Today I touched down in a painfully hot Florence (complaints about the weather have actually managed to surpass comments on the clothes amongst sweltering attendees!) to check out the goodies on offer at this year's Pitti party. After a charming flight - sat next to the lovely Christopher Raeburn - I headed over to the Pitti palace where in one quick lap I discovered a stall which puts an end to all existing male summer footwear dramas (sandals? surely not? brogues? what about socks?). The solution? These espadrilles-cum-embroidered-slippers from Italian brand Manedbi. Productive!
Other highlights from the day include a beautiful presentation from jewellery talent Delfina Delettrez - so surreal it could give old Schiap a run for her money - as well as Valentino's S/S 2013 menswear offering (full review up shortly). I also popped into the unashamedly opulent Peter Pilotto womenswear presentation, where I was greeted with not just some natty fashion but also a banquet that would make a Tudor monarch proud.
Already I'm struck by the overwhelming sense of luxury at this year’s Pitti. Maybe it’s just more obvious when directly contrasted with the chirpy make-do-and-mend ethos displayed in London – where no one bats an eyelid at a frayed hem or showroom-cum-warehouse setting – but it seems that Italy wants to make a real statement with its fashion. And what’s the final message? Raw talent or just money and power?