Brioni Comes to Life

Men from real life modeled the label’s fall collection at Milan fashion week.

If life imitates art, then the Brioni man is sartorially prepared. During Milan fashion week, the venerable Italian brand gave buyers and editors an unexpected treat. Rather than display its fall collection on staid models striding runways with blank stares, artistic director Jason Basmajian cast real men from different walks of life—an Oslo police chief, a boxer, French perfumer/Cognac heir Kilian Hennessy. Once they got the right guys, they put them in the right situations, with tableaux vivants depicting moments in a man’s life when Brioni does the trick. There they were in a boardroom meeting wearing razor-sharp double-breasted suits that command respect (above); then in a smoky bar dressed casually in dark denim and sleek leather jackets. To see the clothes in action like this created a new kind of energy for a fashion show, as if to say, “It’s as exciting to get dressed as it is to live your life.”

Editor’s Picks

Formal: Navy Super 180s wool-and-silk tuxedo with shawl collar ($9,900) or gray velvet paisley dinner jacket ($6,800).

Casual: Reversible brown deer-and-cashmere blouson jacket ($5,000) or black Oslo calfskin suede blazer with printed silk lining ($5,000).