Organized a few days before the Milan fashion shows, which start this Friday, the event is a meeting point between buyers and sellers, but also showcase for the big brands, through impressive parades.
"Pitti Uomo is the hall that sets the pace of men's fashion, here everything happens," says Stéphane Gaffino, founder of the sophisticated brand The egoist, present for the fourth consecutive year.
"We paraded in England, in the United States … but if there is a hall where we have to be present, it's Pitti, because it has a lot of impact … The whole world of men's fashion is present, there are buyers from the States United States, Japan, Korea … we met with large groups that we could not see elsewhere, "says Gaffino.
Most of the fashion shows take place at Fortezza da Basso, a 16th-century fortress that hosts over 30,000 visitors for four days, including 19,000 shoppers. Almost half of them are foreigners or exhibitors.
Clothes, jackets, accessories. The lounge offers everything needed to dress the man from head to toe, whether in classic or sporty style.
The setting, despite being on business, is festive, with small bars and restaurants.
Elegant men expect to be photographed. Many are stylists, creators of small brands and influencers who cover the event.
Since its inception, the Pitti Uomo hall, which has been re-launched with the new Pitti Immagine brand and a new strategy 30 years later, has steadily grown.
"In 1989 there were 400 exhibitors, today we have reached 1,220," says the director, Raffaello Napoleone.
To participate there is a waiting list of 350 to 500 names, according to the director.
Parallel to the parades, Pitti "works a lot with the cultural part of fashion, research, innovation: to be really strong and possible, it always has to be renewed," he says.
The event takes place in the most beautiful places of Florence and its surroundings. In the midst of cypresses and lemon trees, in a typical village, the parade of the French brand Givenchy, the first male parade of designer Clare Waight Keller, artistic director of the brand since March 2017, took place on Wednesday evening.
Florence is today the great international capital of men's fashion, a tradition, since in the past it was also the capital of all Italian fashion, the city where the first parades were organized in 1951, thanks to the visionary idea of businessman Giovanni Battista Giorgini.
Armani, Ferragamo, Prada, Karl Lagerfeld, Carine Roitfeld, Marco de Vincenzo, MSGM and Dirk Bikkembergs, plus other fashion and luxury figures, as well as American artist Sterling Ruby are among the protagonists of the event with installations and parades.
One of the most important moments will undoubtedly be the show set for Thursday night by the fashion queen Carine Roitfeld, who promises to be the biggest multi-brand parade that has ever happened around the world.
"Karl Lagerfeld always said that we should do what we never did," said Roitfeld, a former editor of Vogue Paris and friend of the designer, who died in February.
The show, which will end with a Lenny Kravitz show, will pay tribute to the 1990s with "supermodels" of the time parading at dusk in front of 5,000 people in a square overlooking the Arno River.
Giant screens will broadcast the event in various parts of the city.
From Friday night, Milan will be the protagonist when opening the parades with the passerelle of the Italian brand Ermenegildo Zegna.
Until Monday evening, the capital of Lombardy has scheduled more than 25 fashion shows for spring-summer of 2020, including brands like Dolce & Gabbana, Versace, Fendi and Armani.