Eight designers every dashing man needs to know
From ultra-luxurious eveningwear made from innovative materials, to show-stopping debut collections and daring re-imaginations of much-loved brands, these nine labels offer the crème-de-la-crème of menswear.
Keep reading to discover the brands — from old favourites like Ralph Lauren and Tom Ford, to up-and-comers like Childs and Berluti — that every man should be stocking his closet with.
A pioneer of some of the world's most indulgent textiles, Kiton has once again set a new standard for innovation with a series of ultrasoft silk-lapel vicuña evening jackets in rich shades of brown, green, blue, and burgundy. Because of the high prices that vicuña has historically commanded, jackets made from it were traditionally produced primarily in classic, conservative colours to ensure that they outlasted short-term fashion trends.
Addressing both the growing popularity of this rare material and the demand for more distinctive colour options, Kiton has flouted this practice, offering garments like this rich brown tuxedo jacket, $US27,000 (about $A35,850), shown with wool trousers.
Robert Childs, former design director at Thom Browne, introduced his first collection bearing the Childs name last year — to rave reviews. The New York–based designer renders wardrobe staples, such as trench coats and suits, in smart materials with exceptional construction.
The fused fabrics and roomier silhouettes were designed for comfort and longevity. Childs's impeccable attention to the smallest details is evident in such pieces as this cotton-twill raincoat bonded with wool and cashmere melton, $US2300 (about $A3050), and this super-120-wool pin-striped suit, $US1600 (about $A2120).
The dashing designer — a sartorial exemplar for many well-heeled men — presented this year what he calls a "toned-down" look in his tailored clothing that makes dressing up with confidence easier for any man.
Ford's aesthetic here emphasises a monotone palette, pairing tailored lines with tonal shirts and neckties. This timeless grey salt-and-pepper flannel Shelton peak-lapel fully lined jacket, $US3750 (about $A4980), and trousers, $US1280 (about $A1700), are at once understated and bold — much like the designer himself.
For some time, Z Zegna has seamlessly tailored athletically styled clothes using cutting-edge performance materials. This season, the Italian brand took this approach a step further with the introduction of ski-inspired clothing that can be worn in action on the slopes or at elegant après-ski gatherings. Advanced fabrics make this down-filled wool jacket, $US1295 (about $A1720), both water-repellent and wind-resistant, while its bold stripes make a visual statement.
This year shearling coats abounded, but Burberry's edgy biker-style jacket, $US4295 (about $A5700), stood out from the crowd, projecting some powerful attitude with its high collar and double zippers.
Long known for topcoats that offer effective protection against the elements, the British house delved into its extensive archives, drawing on shearlings of the 1960s for inspiration while lending the new designs a contemporary energy and spirit.
One expects Hermès, which has set the benchmark for exceptional leather goods, to deliver a stellar lineup of leatherwear; but recently, the French house unveiled top-quality leather jackets that also presented the most fashionable silhouettes of the season. This effortlessly elegant belted calfskin parka, $US17,100 (about $A22,700), for example, embodies an arresting blend of artisanship and originality.
Haider Ackermann for Berluti
A designer who assumes the helm of a historic brand with clearly defined codes almost inevitably confronts a challenge. Not so Haider Ackermann, Berluti's new creative director, who exceeded everyone's expectations with his first collection for the highly revered Parisian luxury-goods house.
He delivered a line of clothing that combines the exceptional tailoring you expect from Berluti with vibrant touches of colour, varied textures, and dashes of the unexpected. His standout pieces include this exceptionally tailored wool coat, $US4830 (about $A6410), with a detachable blue fur vest, price upon request.
Despite being a born and bred Brooklynite, Ralph Lauren has come to epitomise the spirit of the American West through his authentically curated clothing and accessories collections. This year, the designer refreshed his classic signature look by introducing Southwestern influences to such finely tailored garments as this unlined black-and-white-print wool jacket, $US4995 (about $A6630). Ralph Lauren's timeless yet contemporary take on menswear is as much at home on the range as it is on city streets.