Heard about new Berluti scene for Autumn Winter 2012? Expect you have. Have a shufty if not (click). It's a fully blown ready to wear collection and a revamp of all the Berluti shops. Antoine, son of Bernard Arnault (CEO of LVMH) is in charge. It's a complete work of passion for him, is the word on Luxury Street. He's been working all day, all day, all day.

I've seen it, touched cloth and tried bits of it on. I like it. It's got a handwriting already, like an opulent character from a thriller set between Berlin and Paris, or something. The images and styling are really good. The knocked back colour scheme is resonant, the older models, and the almost 'between the wars' look to the images work. Love a bit of 'robe-shouldering', as you well know. Much of the tailoring is without structure in the shoulders, cut with small armholes like a Scholte shoulder, as per tailors Anderson & Sheppard. The fabrication is executed like there's always been a house of Berluti making clothes. Being part of the LVMH crew cannot hurt on that level I'd hazard. Regardless, it's good. Wonder what it'll look like in the shops?

Now the story goes that Bernard bought Antoine a pair of Berluti shoes for his 16th birthday, and explained how 'important' they were, special patina et al. This ignited a love of the French house and it's been Antoine's ambition to take it to a new level of prominence, while extending it's realm to luxe-clobber. He's got Alessandro Sartori, an Italian from Zegna, on board as design director. French with an Italian accent eh? Much like the original Berluti set up. Or was it the other way round? Regardless, the whole thing looks pretty convincing at this point. I wonder how many people have to flock and spend dollar to make the thing work? They always say with these things it's all about the long, long term, don't they. Wonder how long? I hope to meet the fellas and have a chat about it for the FT HTSI. Want to find out exactly how passionate the Arnault son is. Wonder what his brief from Dad is? Cat's little film sheds some light perhaps. Take it..

Rhythm really was a different kettle of fish then. Do like the couple pretending to be on date despite The Boy Stevens jigging about next to them, tugging his mic cord then singing. Do clock the Mod dancers who look pretty, pretty cool. Cool. Worried that Cat looks a trifle Austin Powers, or is it the other way round? While we're in the Sixties, Berluti have heroed a couple of existing shoe styles, mainly The Andy, which has been restyled and is available in new colours. I can shed no light at this stage on the  rumour that Olga Berluti is locked in the cellar of the Rue Marbeuf shop with a ton of last until she confesses what her and Picasso really got up to during their 'free-thinking' periods, and if he indeed did devise a new way of seeing shoes and The Cubist Chukka boot with her. A trip to Paris is in order to uncover more truths. What would Olga's Grandfather Torello Berluti make of the brave new plan for the house? Reckon the pioneering family of old would have been bang up for it.

The Arnault's vigorous embrace of the situation bodes well, what with the power they wield, so reckoned Torello would be up and down the Champs-Élysées robe shouldering it in the new gear as we speak. He could have retired early and become a full time Flâneur. This gear has something of the hands-on Flâneur about, non?

Right, am off out for a spot of Flâneuring up and down Chatsworth Road I think.

Stubbs out.

P.S. My sister Julie who does edit the spelling on this here blog was a massive Cat Stevens fan. Met him a couple of times and she did drink a bit of champagne with him. Still goes to see Yusuf now. Still got the cup eh Ju, non? Thing is, Julie can't answer back as the machine thinks its me typing. She could however make me say something mental. I'll, go steady I think.

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