Batman, cowboys and Norman conquerors inspire men's fashion in Milan

Sun Jan 12, 2014 7:12pm EST
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By Isla Binnie

MILAN (Reuters) - Inspired by Batman, cowboys and Norman conquerors, fashion designers in Milan showed casual and vibrant outfits alongside sharp tailoring for male shoppers who are looking beyond the classic suit.

Italy's fashion capital on Saturday kicked off events on 39 catwalks spanning four days for a men's fashion market which consultancy Bain & Co says is growing faster than womenswear globally.

At Iceberg, designer Federico Curradi drew on the sporty brand's history of using cartoon images to create clothes intended to be as suitable at the office as at a party.

"The focus for me was to think about one fantastic cartoon and I thought about Bruce Wayne," Curradi told Reuters after showing long tunic tops under mohair sweaters, blazers and bomber jackets, mostly in black and grey with flashes of red.

"In the day he was like a really traditional man, wearing a beautiful English style, but at night when he became a hero he changed totally," Curradi said.

Men now represent 40 percent of the luxury goods market, according to a Bain report published in October and trendy sportswear and denim are growing in importance alongside classic made-to-measure tailoring.

"There's certainly a gentleman that likes to be suited up and that's his lifestyle but I think we're also seeing an entirely new generation of people that have a bit of a relaxed lifestyle," Ken Downing, fashion director at U.S. luxury department store Neiman Marcus, told Reuters.

Italian label Versace sent models down the runway in leather chaps, shirts fastened with bootlace ties, thick-heeled cowboy boots and motorbike helmets emblazoned with Versace's Medusa-head logo.   Continued...