When asked to define his first collection for the Italian powerhouse Ermenegildo Zegna, Stefano Pilati, the designer behind the new couture Men’s RTW Spring 2014 collection, gave a simple answer: “It’s sexy”. Surprisingly enough, Pilati hits the right mark with the use of such a seemingly clichéd expression. There was something so languid about his outfits-the casually closed, double-breasted jackets; oversized, robe-like coats bursting open or cinched tightly; pants cropped well above the ankles’ sleeves pushed up just so or slanted pea-coat pockets on suit jackets-that is almost seemed like a manifesto of some sorts.
True to the brand’s legacy, Pilati kept things suave and gentlemanly, yet there was an element of casual brokenness present; as if reflecting the designer’s conviction that a man who chooses to do suits is not going to bother with convention. It would only be natural for him to do so, for him who has the previous experience at Yves Saint Laurent that taught his textile wizardry and silhouette; and now he can afford to be discombobulating. But then again, according to Gildo Zegna, the brand’s Chief Executive, this is something Pilati always excelled at-re-conceptualizing the familiar and reshaping a brand in something that marries today and tomorrow.
The soul of the collection is in the feeling it evokes thought mixing linen, silk and wool. It is a tribute to grey eminences; the figures behind the King’s throne de jure, but yielding often bigger power and influence de facto. It is a collection for men who have earned their success thought their ability, expertise and culture. It is a collection for men who can afford a price that is higher than the standard price and even then, they take up on the “Su Misura” (made-to-measure) option available at Zegna stores. It is a collection for men who want to have an exclusive personalized label that bears their name hand-sewn onto each sleeve unit, just because. In short, it is a collection for men who go through life with the words “Veni, Vidi, Vici” imprinted in their minds, and they want their clothes to show it.
Together with the new collection, Ermenegildo Zegna has opened a new flagship store in Beverly Hills at 337 Rodeo Drive, a store designed by renowned architect Peter Marino, whose works include such luxurious venues as Chanel Avenue Montaigne and Louis Vuitton Singapore. Alongside with the customary services, the Beverly Hills Global Store also has a designated floor targeted at high-end clients that want to possess the couture pieces out of the new collections, pieces that not only raises the bar of quality and style; but also offers, well, absolute perfection.