It's nice to be home after 11 days away in Europe. International travel is far from normal, with some significant challenges. There were painful delays, long queues and cancellations, but nonetheless, it was great to be travelling again. In each city, I visited our team of suppliers and partners and was excited by what I saw. There was plenty of inspiration and I look forward to sharing more in the next 6 months as I complete our incoming Summer 2023 collection and continue working on Winter and Summer 2024.
Thankfully, I made the call to pack very light and limit myself to carry on. It was definitely my saviour, along with some great reading material from Unity Books. I also test drove a number of items from the new collection, and they all performed well in very hot conditions.
Footwear always catches me out as it adds extra bulk and weight when travelling. This trip, I opted for a suede loafer and wore it nearly every day. It cannot be beaten in terms of comfort and it is versatile enough to wear on any occasion.
This trip also ended my coffee sobriety of 8 years. I will blame the jet lag, but I think it had more to do with Milan and its coffee culture drawing me in. Now that I’m home, I will add it back into my morning routine and it will serve as a nice reminder of one of my favourite cities. The pandemic enforced absence has definitely made my heart grow fonder for this wonderful city. It is an important centre for fashion, especially menswear, and everywhere you go you can feel the wheels of industry churning.
In Italy everything is slightly wrong yet so right. It is fast-paced and crazy. There isn’t a bike helmet in sight, and the cobble-stoned streets are treacherous. Walking is the best way to see the city, with so much to view in terms of architecture and significant art history - visual cues that have influenced so many great designers and creatives.
If I had to choose the best of Milan, it would be art and culture closely followed by commerce. Milan has long been a hub for merchants and artisans, and their craft remains at the very heart of what makes this city great. From tailors to printers, cake makers to shoemakers, they are all here doing what they do best.
Everyone should visit Italy at least once in their life, and when you do, make sure to include Milano in your itinerary. I’m feeling refreshed and look forward to catching up with clients. It’s back to business as usual with a highly anticipated new season around the corner.