This wasn’t your typical, sparkling beach inspiration. Tuomas Merikoski was thinking more of danger, lust and excitement, he said — his summer feeling has something more of a road-trip vibe. To start with, there was a heavy dose of white — lightweight white cotton shirts, some with sailor blouse collars, and a trenchcoat with wide lapels. Merikoski had also rigged up sails in the showroom — he’s making handbags out of sails, and a stiff, crinkly prototype sat near the window, with round handles. Next to the bags were clogs — a collaboration with a traditional Finnish make called Talla, some with fat bows. But topping accessories was the stingray hat. Imagine a bucket hat with an extended brim, that split and grew stingray tails. It added flair but he meant it to be worn casually — like a real sailor bob that will look good even after it’s bleached by the sun. 

Then there was color — simple cotton T-shirts carried an extra sash of lightweight material with the house’s “bleeding dots” print, drape it in front, drape it in back, or toss it in the washing machine — the silky fabric was actually a recycled polyester. 

And now for the statement pieces. Acid-wash jeans had stark contrasts, which he paired with an airy lime green and orange top. A handsome, bulky-cut jeans and jacket ensemble was made with an unusual color treatment. First bleached, then painted with brown patches, and finally, stonewashed — to soften the look. For a harder-edged flavor, there was a sharp dark suit, with copper buttons and a Corto Malthese-flavored severity. 

Aalto’s proposition is for the style-conscious — luxury daywear, with an edge — super cool and slightly odd. With all the surprises and wonderment you’d expect from a good road trip.

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