War and Peace: Valentino Spring/Summer 2014 Men’s

War and Peace: Valentino Spring/Summer 2014 Men’s
Five looks from Valentino's Spring/Summer 2014 Menswear collection.
(Patrick Kovarik/AFP/Getty Images)

In a relatively short amount of time, Valentino’s Pierpaolo Piccioli and Maria Grazia Chiuri have defined the house’s consummate man. He’s a traditionalist, but one who isn’t afraid to add slick wardrobe flourishes and luxe touch-ups, as needed. For spring, these sartorial accoutrements came dark and dashing in navy-blocked chambray, leather pocketing, monochrome camouflaging and a particularly lovely toile pattern. 

But first, a note on casualness, a big topic at the resort 2014 collections that seems to be blanketing the spring menswear presentations as well. Here, Valentino’s gent evaded the nipped and the pin-tucked for oversized T-shirts, straight-line outerwear, and the slightest of waists on blazers and jacketing. The eveningwear – a closing trifecta of midnight-blue tuxedos – was the most form-fitting around.

Shades of steel, ocean, midnight, and washed-out black gave way to a brilliant set of olive coats, banded at the abdomen with gun-mental stripes, our first hint at the encroaching military-lite vibe. For example, an epaulet-adorned flight jacket on still-hot model Clement Chaubernaud later read very Royal Air Force chic, and head-to-toe camo motifs soon thereafter were all street warrior.

But then there was the countryside verve, quaintly elucidated by a toile-print series, most sharply so on trousers. They lent a vintage tint to this otherwise very contemporary, laser-focused presentation. The only miss? Flip-flops.