In conversation with Daniele Alessandrini
What do you think is missing in the wardrobe of urban men?
I would say the fur coat, a garment not so common on the streets, maybe a little more common on the catwalk.
Do you think over time that the Italian fashion style of studied carelessness has taken the backseat to the more straight jacketed polo-necks, sports blazer casual formal style the Americans promote?
I don’t think that style and Italian fashion are going through a crisis and I believe in different styles. Italian style is renowned for quality and that inner elegance that everybody around the world has always envyed us for. Also, the fact that the techniques and know-how were transmitted from generation to generation always made the Italians excellent in what they do. This being said, I’m not into a “conservative” kind of style: fashion has to dare, together with those who love and wear fashion.
A fair chunk of men is torn between sticking to subtle casuals and eye-catching fashion. Do you think this collection manages to tow the middle path?
I think that this is exactly the essence of the capsule collection I’m introducing. It’s a mix of casual and elegant garments that can express perfectly the personality of those who wear them when mixed together. I’m told there are 25 pieces that you have designed in this capsule collection.
Would you say these are all wardrobe staples or would need frequent seasonal adjustments?
The idea of this 25 pieces capsule collection comes from the need to tell a story not just about the fundamental garments of all the Daniele Alessandrini collections, but also to put together must have garments that would ideally become everyone’s basics.
According to you who are the people who influence fashion for men?
I believe that men are looking more and more for comfortable shoes and clothes to wear. Let’s think about managers often wearing sneakers together with elegant and classic suits when at work. At the same time, men take a lot of care about their look: we live in a digital era and a lot of inspirations and ideas come directly from the internet, and from those who have an influence on people: let’s think about the power that footballers have on the kids.
When we talk about classics for men – more often than not the conversation moves to formals – what’s your take on this?
I believe there’s no timeless classic like the sartorial blazer. That’s one of the garments best representing me and the one I’m more linked to. Just like all classics, the man’s blazer can live many different lives season after season and depend on the occasion it’s worn it.
What according to you are classics every man should own?
The wool jacquard tailored blazer, to be worn day and night, mixed with a tee or a shirt depending on the occasion and a five pocket denim or a classic pant.
The leather jacket: is there any more iconic and versatile piece?
The five pocket slim cut jeans to be worn in the evening with a tailored blazer for a contemporary mismatched suit.
In times when most urban men worth their salt are sucking in their stomachs and willing themselves into skinny pants, where do you seek to establish the difference?
I really believe quality worths the investment. It’s not time to buy trendy but badly made clothes: investing means both indulging in a special self-treat and paying attention to the materials, yarns and the manufacturing quality.
What is your take on how Indians dress?
I think that poor Indian people have an inner elegance which is probably linked to their culture and spirituality. The simple garments were worn by Indian people enhance this natural elegance often making it a source of inspiration for the European and American designers.
For most of us, even in Urban India, the blazer continues to be something which is not everyday wear – so what do you think is the easiest way for Indian men?
Wearing it since the morning time! I like to think that – I use to say it quite often- a man’s blazer is something a man can mix and match more than any other piece. A blazer can be worn with a tee and a pair of jeans for a more informal look, or with a shirt and classic trousers for a dinner out. Try to believe.
Are there any specific Indian design influences in this collection?
I would say the shirt with no collar, a garment is often worn by Indian people; to match with – why not!- a leather jacket and classic jacquard trousers