Things work differently at Stefano Ricci. The elite luxury brand doesn't operate like typical fashion brands, opting to work closely with its clientele of high-powered individuals—Stefano Ricci counts the late Nelson Mandela, Andrea Bocelli and most recently, Michael Bublé as some of its ardent fans—for custom creations.
And when it comes to seasonal presentations, Stefano Ricci avoids the pomp and circumstance of the traditional fashion week agenda. The brand has a presence during Pitti Uomo in Florence every show season, but would rather whisk journalists off to different obscure parts of Italy to experience a collection in the best possible setting, before the official start of each men's show season. Like the seaside resort of Punta Ala before sailing towards the highly protected island of Montecristo, for the brand's spring/summer 2019 presentation.
For spring/summer 2020, Stefano Ricci brought us to Naples, Italy. That's right, the original home of the pizza.
But it was an incredible slice of history that was served up instead. As with every Stefano Ricci presentation, the location is kept secret—no one knew what to expect in Naples. We drove for almost an hour from the hotel and stopped about 34km later to a palace. Quite literally, one of the largest palaces in Europe; bigger than the famous Palace of Versailles, of which it was inspired by.
The Reggia di Caserta took 93 years to complete, and was built under the order of Charles VII of Naples, who unfortunately, didn't live long enough to see through the completion of the palace. Its size is matched only by its opulence—interiors constructed completely out of marble in certain rooms, gold leaf-covered decorations, hand-painted murals and an exterior that extends f0r 120 hectares. It's mind-blowing.
Designer: Filippo Ricci
10-word show review: A sartorial king for a day dressed in luxurious fabrications.
The look: The Stefano Ricci spring/summer 2020 collection is aptly called 'King For A Day'. But to be honest, every Stefano Ricci collection is as luxurious as they come. Over the years, the brand has opted for a more discreet approach to luxury. Creative director Filippo Ricci has played around with more subtle nuances of luxury, focusing more on the touch and feel of Stefano Ricci's clothes.
The colour palette for the spring/summer 2020 season is fresher and brings to mind the colours you'd find on the buildings in Naples—soft sunflower yellows, sky blue, and anchored by summer-appropriate whites and deep blues. There's the conscious effort in making tailoring (a core segment of the business) lightweight by using silk-linen blends and moving towards more of a broken suit look.
As with previous Stefano Ricci outings, the collection includes every facet of the Stefano Ricci man (or in this case, king). Running around the Reggia di Caserta's garden requires the king to be comfortable and elegant in technical silk garments and lightweight trainers. And for the evening galas and black-tie affairs, there's the classic evening tuxedo that's topped off with buttery patent leather shoes. Or an even more luxe offering in the form of a crocodile leather Oxfords.
Look out for: For the first time ever, the spring/summer 2020 lookbook features menswear together with kidswear in some of the key looks of the season. They're effectively mini versions of the corresponding looks; the prince to the king, if you will. And for some reason, the clothes don't look like the kids are trying too hard to look grown up; they just fit.