High flying and low riding with the jumpstarted Paris brand showing in Florence
Kenzo's Pitti show venue, the Mercato Centrale di San Lorenzo, was so cavernous it was colder than the fresh air outside of it – but thankfully Humberto Leon and Carol Lim provided everyone in attendance with a wool/mohair blend blanket, branded and printed with the date. Afterwards the streets were filled with impromptu gaucho looks, as they were thrown and wrapped around shoulders. Now that's viral marketing.
It's perceptiveness like this that has turned around the Paris brand in such a short time to such hot property, reinstoring a vitality to the label. The New Yorkers understand that fashion must be connected to the beat of the street, and it's their Vans and New Era collaborations and iPhone cases that connect pricier catwalk looks to the youth that crave it.
This season, we were taken into the sky – pretty appropriate for a creative team that spends so much time en avion between continents, with daytime and nighttime clouds, lighting bolts, raindrops and stars appearing throughout the collection. Coats were double breasted and an Asian warrior silhouette was introduced. Their tiger icon appeared as a clever, tiny repeat print that wasn't obvious until close inspection. Accessories remained strong – Delfina Delettrez created lighting bolt tie pins and metal handkerchiefs tucked into the breast pocket (we were at Pitti after all). After the show? Go exploring. Lim and Leon handily recommend their favourite market spots.
CAROL & HUMBERTO'S FAVOURITE SPOTS INSIDE THE MERCADO CENTRALE, FLORENCE:
Humberto: I love tripe and this is the best looking I've ever seen.
Carol: They have the best mushrooms in Florence and these spreads are incredible with bread.
Dal 1898 Bar Bellini
Carol and Humberto: We love this classic Florentine bar for their coffee and snacks.
Carol: Best spices in Florence.
Humberto: Florence is known for their steaks and the meat looks incredible here.
Carol & Humberto: Best salami in the world.
La Bottega Colosa
Carol: I love the Italian salts here!
Carol & Humberto: The best balsamic vinegar!