Dupioni or shantung silk, Swarovski or pearl buttons, double georgette or crepe de chine lined? Decisions like these have plagued that small percentage of women who don couture for decades. Excuse the sarcasm, since having the luxury to have something tailored especially for you in the most exquisite of materials from the most notable couturiers is hardly a plague and more of an extreme privilege. Men have also shared in this pleasure with ateliers and Saville Row tailors catering to the three piece delicacies of gents in the most fluid of wools, crispest of linens and finest of shirtings. However, menswear has always strived to remain that classic and appropriately slow moving well-oiled machine. With that in mind, it's interesting to see how the recent decadence and 'look at me' lavishness in certain parts of modern menswear would translate into this almost sacred arena of ginghams and gaberdines.
The answer appears to be that as long as you keep the aura of luxury, you can get dandy, showcase excess and offer men a taste of the lushness of couture. At least this appears to be the answer for Angelo Galasso. The 20+ year veteran designer honors Italian craftsmanship and the spirit of couture's excellence in fashioning pristine raw materials into wearable works of art and status. His New York debut showcase during Fashion Week was an introduction for the attuned American man to become acquainted with his honed propensity towards opulence, eye for detail and sense of luxury. What better place to hold his showing than in his recently opened high end boutique located in the epic Spanish Renaissance Revival Edwardian Room of the famed Plaza Hotel.
There were classic Angelo Galasso elements on display like his nattily tailored blazers and his lavish dress shirts and eye-catching accessories. Of particular note on display were updated versions of his 'Polso Orologio' dress shirt that he first made in the early 1990's for Fiat President Gianni Agnelli in which the design is meant for a man's wristwatch to be worn over the shirt's cuff. Galasso is the type of visionary designer that appeals to men in all walks of that high life that have a liking to decadence. So angled french cuffs, crystal buttons and other dandy details adorn shirts, jeans, jackets and outerwear in a, I'm going to say it, 'I have money' manner. His dress shoes are also impeccably designed in supple and exotic skins with some of them having covetable suede to leather featured uppers.
The latest offerings for Spring 2013 continue to showcase Galasso's adherence to classic well-built mens tailored clothing. There were perfectly tailored blazers with full rolls and brocaded textures, fun colored blazers and dress shirts paired with preppy shorts and dark & handsome evening attire in colors and textiles evocative of the midnight sky. Most important to note about Mr. Galasso's designs is that he remains classic in his approach. Part of the multi-national appeal among his male millionaire, billionaire and elite clientele is that he adheres to luxury within the confines of classic shapes and proportions of power, stature and success rather than the most forward and covered trends in current mens fashion. That's what his customers expect and feel secure with spending their cash on. After all, their private chefs, luxury car dealers and real estate brokers, not to mention their wive's couturiers, shouldn't be the only ones taking benefiting from all the dividends.
*Fine watches for the presentation were provided by Jacob & Co.