AUTUMN/WINTER 2017-18 – UNCONVENTIONAL FORMAL
What are the style requirements of the contemporary man? Alberto Guardiani has responded to this question with a versatile and multi-functional collection for Autumn/Winter 2017.
It’s a footwear wardrobe with a great personality, inspired by a very specific observation: the modern-day gentleman’s increasingly urgent need for a versatile range of accessories, which not only have an original design and unquestionable quality, but are also easy to interpret in an everyday key.
The approach is spontaneous and relaxed: but this casual attitude is always balanced by the exemplary skill and know-how of the fashion house. The result is a versatile and practical range of footwear that can be worn 24/7 and dressed up or down. All with a perfect balance of surprising fashion details and a rich heritage of formal references.
All this can clearly be seen in the careful selection of the materials: refined and classic leathers which have been given a unique and contemporary edge by the sophisticated treatments and finishes. Calf leather is worked using the brush-off technique to reveal a subtle decorative motif or washed to give it that pleasurably worn-in look, then there’s the laminated and brushed designs, in a constant study of innovative effects and cutting-edge workmanship. An alternative twist has been given by the textured leathers: from classic Saffiano calf and etched python-look detailing, right the way through to fish scale-effect flock texture and brush-off linen printed leather, the effects of the materials are the key focus of the new collection.
And there’s also plenty of ‘surprises’ too, like bold, marble-effect patent leather, whimsical printed suede – like the tartan proposals – or fabrics like melange wool. All options that add an unexpected edge and bring a new range of decorative combinations to the already rich and varied portfolio of materials. The color palette also moves along the same lines, hovering between tradition and innovation. Überclassic hues like black, natural leather and brown are alternated with more unusual shades like blue, plum and dark green. Whatever the case, the tones are never flat, but variegated colour nuances that are enhanced by a skillful fusion of craftsmanship and materials.
Naturally, this trend towards versatility is also reflected in the footwear designs, starting with One, the new iconic design of the season. A perfect union of active and formal spirit, with a sartorial construction and casual look, One is not a performance shoe, it’s a design sneaker. Conceived as a formal evolution of the sports shoe, it combines the typical running shoe sole with an essential upper made of sophisticated materials, which look although they have been borrowed from the world of men’s tailoring. Curated down to the finest detail – from the technical, 3-part sole to the stitch work on the rubber-coated, calf toecap – the sole features an embossed motif with the brand’s logo; an element that is also re-proposed in metal on the elasticated strap on the upper, which also transforms the shoe into a practical slip-on.
Another perfect example of the transverse attitude of the Autumn/Winter 2017 collection is Heritage, which is a sporty evolution of the classic lace-up. Inspired by a design from the Alberto Guardiani archives, this super-functional, light-weight Derby comes with an ultra-light sole and a leather mid sole. With its square-shaped silhouette and meticulous detailing – like the garnet red spoiler – it has been created according to the highest standards of artisanal workmanship, as can be seen in the hand-stitched accents on the toe. A shoe that is an ambassador of transverse style and the epitome of contemporaneity. Meanwhile, the fusion between outdoor and formal makes a comeback in Forrest.
With its distinctive serrated sole and uppers inspired by the Oxford or the Beatles-style ankle boot, the design has been embellished with British, punch hole detailing, borrowed from formal footwear. Kipling, designed along the same lines, recalls the traditional mountain boot, with its rounded lines and heavy structure. However, in this case, the important sole (constructed in 3 layers, with a shark-tooth tread, rubber insert and leather welt) has been combined with an upper made of luxurious materials or interpreted in a more fashionable key, like the suede and plaid printed version. Another novelty this season is Benson, which perfectly represents the spirit of “Unconventional Formal”. It’s a shoe with clean, essential lines, that effortlessly combines a leather sole with a rubber grip. What makes it unforgettable are the contemporary details, like the diagonal, elastic stripes and unusual materials, like marble-effect patent leather.
Another formal, yet decisively fashionable design is Tom John, with somber, chiseled lines and a super light, flexible rubber sole. Available in both the slip-on and Oxford version, in a variety of precious materials, it has been made even more refined by the accurate workmanship, such as the brushed laminate accents which reveal a variegated array of color hues. The same goes for Phillo, also available in the Oxford or slip-on version, which has been designed with a decisively sporty twist. Made using contrasting materials, this new, ultra-light sneaker with a box sole comes in a combination of soft suede and tartan print or soft calf and laminated leather. An essential shoe that can be adapted to suit a wide variety of looks. Finally, the footwear brand’s two flagship models, Clatyon and Sharkboot also get an upgrade. In fact, the soles of both designs – which have been extremely popular for the last few seasons – have been embellished with a laminated leather insert and a metallic chain element. An innovative touch for these two styles with a masculine spirit, also proving that some of the best things often come from the most unlikely of unions.
Founded in 1947 in Montegranaro (Fermo), Alberto Guardiani is synonymous with footwear that is the expression of the most refined craftsmanship tradition from the Marches. Now distributed all over the world, the Alberto Guardiani brand offers a Men’s and Women’s line, along with the Guardiani Sport collection. A passion for innovation together with outstanding workmanship continues to characterize the company’s creations, resulting in unique accessories that represent Italian made excellence the world over.