Moving their show to Milan and launching handbags weren’t the only headlines for Peter Pilotto this season; the London designers also debuted men’s wear as part of their electric-hued, beach-to-ballroom collection.
“It came from a really natural place of having our girls’ boyfriends want to wear our clothes, and being male designers and wanting to be able to try them and feel what’s right ourselves,” said Pilotto, who designs the line with Christopher de Vos.
In addition to the new categories, they also debuted a more separates-driven vision.
“In London, we were doing a lot of more elevated cocktail wear, but coming to Italy, and launching the men’s wear and bags, we wanted to do more daywear,” the designer explained, noting that their Made in Italy fabric development started with finding the terrycloth jacquard used on the collection’s hero piece: a hooded men’s abstract-floral terrycloth beach robe, worn with surf shorts, a matching printed floral tote, satin beach slides and bucket hat.
Altogether, it made for a lineup that was relaxed and commercial, though lacking a bit of the print artistry for which the London colorists are known. Still, the oversize damask jackets, surfer-style shorts and utility pants in liquid-look florals should be hot sellers — if the prices are right. The new sense of ease extended into an expanded offering of cool knitwear, including a Lurex stripe tube skirt and crop top, and a citron-and-orange patterned, sarong-style skirt and crop tank.
Tropical-looking bowling shirts and punchy-hued intarsia knit polos with belted sash volume skirts or asymmetrical minis spoke to a new sporty femininity for evening, while a smudge-floral silk dress with draped bodice and open midriff was elegant enough to go from the sand to the disco.
The new handbags ranged from backpacks and totes to leather bags designed to work in a modular way. One could wear the ice cream-colored, crescent-shaped mini satchels double-decker style, for example, as they were shown on the runway, or unsnap them and use them solo. One scoop or two!