Lino Ieluzzi – he’s arguably one of the best-dressed men walking the face of the planet. But Italy’s beloved owner of Milanese boutique, Al Bazar is neither a model, famous actor or coddled TV personality dressed by a suite of stylists. He’s a man with the kind of innate eye for elegance and style that can’t be learned out of books or in Fashion College. Deeply influenced by his rakish father and filled with equal amounts of balls and entrepreneurism, in 1969 Lino Ieluzzi took a jeans store and turned it into a high end men’s boutique, at a time when the masses were eschewing traditional sartorial standards – talk about guts. However his sense of style and devotion to bringing back classic elegance paid off in spades, as he is now considered one of the true icons of men’s fashion, a celebrity in his own right, celebrated by street style photographers and fashion bloggers all over the world. No Pitti Fair would be complete without him.
So, how does he do it? How does one Milanese man develop such a cult-like following from fashionistas all over the world? Well, let’s take a look at Lino Ieluzzi’s signature look in more detail.
Lino Ieluzzi’s colour palatte
Whether he’s strutting around the Pitti Uomo fair or enjoying a passeggiata down Via Monte Napoleone, Lino Ieluzzi somehow manages to stand out like a proud peacock amongst a flock of pigeons. But he doesn’t do this by wearing bold, brash colours. No, Lino Ieluzzi respects the first pillar of dressing well; understanding which colours enhance your complexion. Much has been written about colour coordination and dressing for your skin tone, Alan Flusser in particular, addresses this topic well in his book “Dressing the Man: Mastering the Art of Permanent Fashion” but all you really need to know is that, if you have a high contrast complexion (dark hair, light skin) then you should wear high contrast clothing combinations. Conversely, if you, like Lino Ieluzzi have a low contrast complexion (light hair and light skin) then you should wear clothes with a low amount of contrast.
Observe Lino Ieluzzi in the following photos – Lino favours neutral colours (but never dull – he loves a good windowpane, plaid with overcheck or houndstooth pattern) in his suits; fawn, beige, tan, grey, powder blue and often pairs them with a white or light blue dress shirt – a classic low contrast combination to ensure his visage is regarded in the most complementary light. Often his tie and accessories will add sufficient contrast to keep his outfit interesting – more on that later. Lino Ieluzzi is blessed with cobalt blue eyes and wearing blue dress shirts certainly play up this feature. Consider wearing shirts and ties in colours that echo your skin tone and eye colour to really lift your face. The Philippe Perzi Vienna collection has some great options.
You’ve heard the catchphrase “fashion comes and goes, style is forever” right? Well, those men who are known to be amongst the best dressed abide by this old adage and need never worry whether the suit silhouette is becoming slimmer or whether the look this season is a wider tie, because they know that the answer lies not in what the latest trends coming down the runway are, but their personal architecture. Lino Ieluzzi recently said in an interview with Pelliano, “I don’t like fashion – you don’t have to change every six months just because fashion tells you so.” Lino Ieluzzi knows how important proportions are when dressing for his physique and what’s more, his clothing choices are based on a specific set of physical trademarks, not the latest fads or vicissitudes of fashion.
Lino Ieluzzi’s long time love for the double-breasted suit has seen a resurgence in popularity, especially amongst younger style conscious men, as we reported in our Pitti Uomo blog. As stylish as Lino Ieluzzi is, there is method in his ardent partiality for 6×2 button double-breasted jackets. With a smoothly draped chest, fitted waist and wide, longer lapels that extend through the waistline, double-breasted jackets give Lino extra height and flatter his build. The peaked lapels of the double-breasted suit with the upswept pointed ends accentuate height and the slanting lines elongate and narrow the frame.
Lino Ieluzzi’s trousers (he equally dons jeans for a more sporty or off-duty look) are usually slim cut and on the shorter side, with the smallest of breaks if any at all, to show off his shoes. The overall look is one of refinement mixed with stylish swagger and gives him an elegance, authority and panache that an otherwise single-breasted suit might not deliver. In Lino’s own words “The double breasted coat is a strong look. It is like having a little more power without being ridiculous.” Bravo Lino – we like your audacity.
Lino Ieluzzi and the cutaway collar shirt
It is rare to find a photo of Lino Ieluzzi where he is not wearing a cutaway collar shirt – although he confesses to wearing t-shirts when he’s on holidays in Formenterra. Indeed, the cutaway collar shirt is part of his signature look. Lino Ieluzzi knows all too well that the cutaway collar shirt is the most elegant and stylish of all dress shirt collars and flatters his facial features. As we’ve previously written in our blog, the cutaway collar shirt really should be a staple in every man’s wardrobe. A mainstay of both power dressing and smart casual outfits, it is because of the cutaway collar’s versatility and classic elegance that Philippe Perzi Vienna’s online store only sells cutaway collar shirts. (Our flagship store in Vienna sells a larger range of collar styles). Shop our collection now for a wide range of cutaway collar shirts in vivid colours and classic hues.
Lino Ieluzzi shows us the art of sprezzatura
Sprezzatura, dégagé, nonchalance or whatever you call it, is something Italians do quite naturally. The uncontrived, carefree sartorial rebellion is about breaking the ‘rules’ or injecting some personal flair into your outfit to create your own individual signature. Just remember “It is not elegant any more when you make something too self-conscious or too extreme”
As impeccably dressed as Lino Ieluzzi is, it’s the little quirks, individual flourishes or in some cases peccadillos or imperfections that have inspired a cult of devotees to emulate his look.
Lino Ieluzzi wears the arms of his jackets on the shorter side and usually leaves a few buttons undone. Partly for practicality, partly for show, this enables him to show off his beautifully made suits (only the best suits are able to have the buttons undone) and his collection of watches – again, only the best will do. He is a fan of Patek Philippe and Audemar Piguet.
Leaving the top buckle of his double-monk-strap shoes open began as just an easy way of slipping his shoes on and off, but this trend has since caught on in Japan. What better evidence do you need to say you’ve made it when you can say you’re big in Japan.
Lino Ieluzzi’s ties with the number 7 embroidered on the front have been a best seller in his Al Bazar boutique. Why the number 7 you ask? Well, that’s the date of his birthday and his lucky number. In addition, Lino also recommends never using a mirror when you knot your tie, just to make sure it is imperfect and unselfconscious. It’s this kind of insouciance that separates the Italians from say the English or Americans who just want to be dressed ‘correctly.’
A number of other little touches make Lino Ieluzzi’s bespoke look a little bit rock ‘n’ roll – a chain attached to a money clip that hangs from his pocket, a number of leather bands adorning his wrist, the metal tips on his leather belt – like a Texas ranger and leaving the French cuffs of his dress shirt undone and exposed underneath his jacket. Round that out with a cigarette (not that we encourage smoking) and some cool sunglasses and you have yourselves a style icon.
Lino Ieluzzi is undoubtedly one of the best-dressed men in the world. Known for being impeccably well dressed with just the right amount of ‘sprezzatura,’ Lino Ieluzzi’s inclusion in our style icon series is worthy because the man respects the fundamentals of dressing well, whilst adding his own touches of individual flair to create a classic but distinctively modern look.