Rules of Style: Z Zegna's Paul Surridge Wants You to Experiment With Pastels

"Less is more. I find reducing the look down to the essentials helps modernize traditional menswear."

Image courtesy of Z Zegna.

Z Zegna's creative director, Paul Surridge, who will unveil a new vision for the brand at Pitti Uomo in Florence this week, took a break from getting his collection ready to chat with us about how to make traditional menswear look modern and what colors to try on this summer.

1. "Less is more. I find reducing the look down to the essentials helps modernize the sartorial codes of traditional menswear. Try not to overexperiment with textures or patterns. Mohair blends can update the sartorial suit with a modern impact, more so than a classic fabric. Shorter lengths also help modernize the silhouette."

2. "For me, summer is navy. I love a sharp, crisp navy or sapphire blue. This summer, experiment with sorbet pastels that bring a softness to darker shades like navy. In particular, lemon."

3. "For a sandal this season, a simple Birkenstock—the monk style is my favorite. It's important to feel comfortable in sandals, and I love the ease of this style."

4. "The qualities of a shirt should include a good, slim cut, a well-balanced collar, and, most of all, the perfect construction."

5. "When layering for summer, keep it lightweight. Look for cotton blends, don't wear the clothes too slim, and remember that wearing layers can also be a great opportunity to embrace a graphic style."

6. "A great-fitting sweatshirt that replaces the knitted sweater is an urban style staple to have."

7. "Milan's new restaurant Ceresio 7 is a great place to take an early-evening cocktail by the terrace swimming pool. The Antonia shop in Brera has an interesting mix of products and a beautiful interior."

8. "Visit Tokyo. Its energy is unique. Tokyo is truly dynamic and the only place I feel far from home. For me, it represents the future."

—Andrew Villagomez is a men's lifestyle and travel writer and a Details Network contributor. Follow him at @VeeTravels.

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