Make like an Italian and stay cool when the weather heats up.
Moss - tailored fit white seersucker suit



Words: T. MacInnis


Home to countless designers, models and unmatched craftspeople, Italy is undoubtedly one of the most stylish countries in the world. From having good taste to understanding fit and tailoring and dressing for the weather, Italians are on another level when it comes to clothes.

Whether you’re having a negroni in a Milanese piazza or wandering along the canals in Venice, read on to find out what you need to look like a local.

What defines Italian style?

It’s tough to nail down exactly what makes Italian men so stylish, and that’s part of the appeal. It’s about looking effortless and having an innate understanding of what works (and what doesn’t). So, it can be challenging to replicate. But, with the emergence of quiet luxury, honed by several Italian brands, we do know it’s important to focus on quality and the more subtle elements. 

It’s a simple but well-constructed overshirt with a great pair of cuffed jeans. Or, a double-breasted blazer layered over an open-knit polo. Focusing on more neutral pieces while not overthinking your look is a great place to start. If it fits well and it’s easy to wear, you’re probably on the right track.

What kinds of fabrics and patterns do Italians gravitate towards?

It tends to get very hot in Italy come summer, but if you visit in July or August, you’ll notice the locals never look like they’re struggling. That’s because they understand what works on the hottest days, and pay attention to the fabrics they know will get them through.

Linen is a good choice, thanks to its breathability and laid-back appeal. You can go head-to-toe in a linen shirt, as above, and a pair of linen shorts or linen trousers on the hottest days and you’ll be comfortable. Seersucker is also a great option, it’s lightweight and breathable nature ideal for warmer days.

Italians love a good pattern, but it’s got to make sense in the context of the outfit, and it should be the focal point. Think: a pastel paisley print or a geometric dot. Nothing overly bold, but still eye-catching and unique. 

What accessories you need to round out your Italian wardrobe

Finding the right finishing touches is essential if you’re trying to replicate an Italian wardrobe. They should be timeless, made with high-quality fabrics and add an element of personality to your look. Try a patterned pocket square or a striped tonal tie, as below. And, if you want to take more of a risk, try tying your tie a little haphazardly. A slightly loosened or uneven tie can add that nonchalance you’re after, and dress down your look a little for those more casual events.

A lot of what it takes to put together an Italian wardrobe is styling what you already have and adding a few well-made basics and extras. And as always, make sure the final look reflects your personality and fits you well.