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Cool Wool continue to draw influential audience globally
24
Jun '14
The vibrant and exciting trends seen at the latest Pitti Uomo show in Florence followed the path etched last season by the directions demonstrated in The Wool Lab, and the various predictions about fibres and fashion for SS15. The main story was the rise of natural fibres in all areas of fashion and the importance of the exploitation of the full value of such quality materials.
 
Cool Wool became an important part of the summer offer at this important menswear exhibition, which continues to attract an influential international audience. Cool wool isolates from its many attributes the particular quality of wool which enables it to be worn successfully in the summer, providing a comfortable climate for the wearer and actively providing a cool ambience. 
 
It is no mean feat to explain to buyer and consumer that a fibre originally extolled for keeping people warm, can with equal ease provide a feeling of cool comfort, due mainly to its natural origin - sheep thrive in a variety of climates thanks to wool’s thermo-regulating properties.
 
However, the message has evidently got through clearly. Jackets were important in all areas, from classic Italian collections to rock and jeans labels. Unlined jackets were colourful, often with textures such as slubs and irregularities lent perhaps by a proportion of linen, bright in blues, greens, salmon and ginger and tempered with steely industrial greys. Blazer checks abounded in configurations from micro designs to larger white windowpanes on a coloured ground giving a jazzy effect.
 
Blue was the most favoured colour of the summer, from mid to bright, with a more restrained grey/blue in traditional birdseyes and micro-checks in many interpretations. Brunello Cuccinelli, Digel, Hardy Amies, Cantarelli, and Neopolitan tailor labels such as Kiton all played about with high-quality fabrics from Merino wool, cotton, linen and silk sometimes in combination, selected for shine, slubs, handle or texture. Bright yellow sometimes appeared as a bright accent colour or for single garments for maximum effect (Z Zegna).
 
As the young mix and match their suits with different fabrics for trouser and jacket it’s clear that there is still a demand for the formal suit, but reimagined. Often dressed down, this season they came in both single-breasted and double-breasted with short jackets and accessories like colourful leather belts, silk handkerchiefs and with the skinny cut which has become the norm. These were seen in lightweight wool, sometimes with a little silk or linen for a different hand. These seemingly conventional two-piece suits, single breasted with one or two buttons, were often unlined or half-lined to make them ultra-light and airy.

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