Why do we love Paul Smith so much? The sixty-something British fashion designer (who was knighted by QE II in 2000), gives us clothes that are elegant, stylish, and well-made but not too serious. You can always find his wit hiding in the details. [[Paul Smith is in the details]] His classic black suits look tailored and proper at first glance, but surprise you with a silk, navy & white polka-dot lining and a single sleeve button tied in red thread (he does cut for thin men, bless him: tall sexy British thang Ian Bostridge wears Paul Smith a lot). Men's shirts are offered in the most outrageous prints -- florals, animals, stripes -- but never garish or painful, always playful. His printed leather goods are collectibles in the OC household: leather wallets and make-up bags stamped with flowers, lipstick containers, and his iconic rainbow swirls (we even bought the disposable camera wrapped in swirls). It's Sir Paul's take on iconic brand identities (like Fendi and YSL have monopolized) while doing with a thoroughly anti-logo approach.
He's been around since 1970 and he's still kicking -- the avid biker just spoke to the FT's How to Spend It and gave Milan a shout-out:
"A recent find is a little cycling workshop in Milan on the exterior wall of the velodrome, called Masi [via Arona 19 Milano 20149]; it's been there since 1949, and the owner restores the bikes of all the old 1960s cycling icons. That was a joyous visit."