Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Throw in extra texture for interest

Brioni pleated silk tie
(Was: $335, Now $195)


Brioni, one of the top men's suit-maker with made-to-measure options, also have exquisitely unique ties that my friend, Manuel, simply loves. Manuel showed off his Brioni tie to me on Sunday and I simply had to spread his enthusiasm for Brioni. (See Forbes slideshow of top men's suit brands).

As you can see from the picture, the key is texture. Brioni's silk tie is pleated and put together by hand in Italy. This makes for a thicker tie than usual, but it also gives the tie an extra layer of depth and detail that would hopefully translate to an extra bout of confidence and strength in your man. The tie I post here is from Brioni's spring 2009 collection and is on sale at

Bottega Veneta
Tornabuoni woven leather bag


Here's another item similarly from Italy, similarly hand-made, and also packed with an extra twist of texture (quite literally). In fact, I posted about this bag back in February and I'm really excited that it's out!! I couldn't see the detail well enough in the runway pictures, but it's clear now that the extra twists added to weaves were made into a pattern instead of overtaking the entire bag. It has the look of vines growing from overhead. Exuding classic romanticism, it is also almost $500 more than the usual Veneta Intrecciato bags. I would still take this over the ubiquitous Intrecciato bags any day. After all, texture is one of the key elements when I make bag decisions!~


I caressed this bag in excitment at Nordstrom today and at first contact, it was extremely disappointing because the bag is very stiff and not the soft/supple Bottega Veneta weave we have grown to love and worship. I simply had to ask the salesperson why that is so. Apparently, the Tornabouni bag was treated with a coating for a harder finish. This was done such that there will be more of a 3-dimensional effect in the twisted strips of woven leather instead of limp little bumps across the bag. Makes sense! I still don't like the idea of a stiff Bottega, but salesperson insists that the leather will soften up upon repeated use not unlike the Intrecciato bags except to a lesser extent because of the stiffening treatment. This reminded me that the braided edges of an Intrecciato bag tends to show a lot of wear and tear because of its incredibly soft leather. Perhaps this inevitability would be avoided with the tougher Tournabouni. Hopeful, but I'm unfortunately unconvinced.

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