Chez Tod’s, Peter Beard revived on the Italian Peninsula
Few individuals had a more romantic life in the past half-century than Peter Beard, the photographer, playboy, artist and lover of Africa who inspired the latest menswear collection from Tod’s.
Once descried as "Half Tarzan and half Byron," the strikingly handsome Beard was also an occasional fixture at haute couture shows in Paris and mega fashion events in New York.
He was famous for his brilliant images of wild animals in Africa, captured in his artistic diaries and giant prints, with handwritten texts, many of them literally written in Beard’s own blood.
His influence was apparent in the key garment of Tod’s Spring/Summer 2022 collection, the safari jacket, composed by the house’s creative director Walter Chiapponi.
"I was heavily inspired by Peter Beard and his newly published book. I loved how he combined the world of safaris in Africa with the world of elegance," explained Chiapponi in a pre-show Zoom.
His first look was a modernist safari jacket made in rough canvas and finished with beautiful leather details. Other jackets combined the house’s iconic gommino rubber studs as padding on the elbows. Even a classy white linen jerkin got a leather trim and piping
Next spring, Tod’s men will go on urban safaris in parachute-like fabrics cut into draped pants, or variations on Breton fishermen's tops. They will also march in lots of striped sneakers, where the stripes reach the bottom of the sole.
Chiapponi also developed a snappy new T-shaped logo clasp, seen in chunky boots and uber-smooth leather satchels.
Using an inclusive yet patrician cast of Adonis-like models, Chiapponi had the show video range about the finer spots in Italy. Drone shots featured crashing waves, lush gardens and poker pine-lined avenues. Italy as so many sophisticated travelers hope to discover it.
Entitled Under the Italian Sun, the Tod’s fashion flick also underlined how much the brand has moved under Chiapponi.
"I started from the idea of beauty and elegance. That’s the path I have chosen for Tod’s," concluded Chiapponi, a designer very much in charge of his studio and his ideas.
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