Paris Fashion Week has always been seen as the pinnacle of the menswear show season. While luxury couture brands of behemoth proportions usually steal the headlines, ready-to-wear brands often surprise us the most. Even though The Rake champions discreet luxury, which is defined by the details often found in bespoke goods, ready-to-wear brands are nevertheless omnipresent in our favouring, and this season has us excited about one brand in particular, AMI Alexandre Mattiussi. Whilst AMI might not boast quite the same heritage as the likes of Louis Vuitton, Cerruti or Berluti, it nonetheless produces beautiful, wearable, honest and desirable menswear. Despite being a modernist brand that was founded in 2011, it’s charm, energy and pleasing aesthetic is reminiscent of an age-old Parisian fashion house.
Although relatively new to The Rake, AMI is a firm favourite amongst the less sartorially inclined and Row frequenting Rake staffers. This is because each collection is season-on-season, an improvement on the former. All parts work beautifully together in tandem and are brought together in a simple, restricted colour palette, which doesn't seek out the approval of others. Expect to see classic wardrobe staples from relaxed tailoring and overcoats, to fantastically soft knitwear, slim fitting trousers and shirts, all of which work in harmony. Then there are the subtle details that add an element of considered cool, and inject a dose of youthfulness into any man’s wardrobe.
Alexandre Mattiussi, Founder and Creative Director of AMI, is a Parisian who’s well aware of the current tectonic shift in menswear that’s shaking the classical foundations we celebrate. Thankfully, he’s very mindful of how men (and women) should dress in this day and age and he has masterfully perfected the intrepid balance of creating effortless contemporary clothing that is classical, timeless and easy wearing in a modern era. Whilst this AW17 season has produced some collections filled with garments that are to say the least, curious, in London, Milan and Paris, AMI is one we are itching to see, buy and eventually wear. We spoke to Alexandre ahead of his show later tonight.
What has been the inspiration for this collection?
This AW17 collection is a logical evolution on from last season. Each collection naturally takes off where the previous one ended – I see it as being a continuous journey, that revisits familiar elements and incorporating new and inspiring components. From the outset I wanted to explore the idea of infusing the collection with a sense of athleticism, a relaxed silhouette combined with a dynamic colour palette. This collection has been a work of instinct and desire, meaning that the design inspiration has been found in a number of different places.
How would you describe the collection’s aesthetic?
I would describe it as joyous and upbeat, spontaneous and instinctive. It’s generous, offering a wide range of elements that together create a vibrant universe. Athletic, energetic and poised.
Who is the AMI man?
The AMI man is everyone, from my closest friends to the people I meet every week, and the guys I see walking in the street. The AMI man appreciates and embraces positivity, with a natural and effortless elegance. His style is honest and genuine, never forced or exaggerated.
What’s been your key focus for this collection?
I’ve been really focused on the collection’s materials and on developing exclusive fabrics and colours that have refined the collection to better reflect our distinct AMI message. Working on a wardrobe-based collection, it is important to cover many different areas of products and to make sure that there's both variety and consistency at the same time. It's a challenge that ultimately results in a more diverse collection.