Pharrell hats.

That’s what they’re called. They’re not over-sized bowlers. Neither should one confuse them with feral cats, though feral cats wearing Pharrell hats could make for some interesting memes.

Emporio Armani is, in theory, the more sporty, younger-oriented, and only slightly more affordable little sister to Armani’s signature collection. Yet, what we see for fall/winter 2014 is not quite as sporty and much more masculine than what we’ve seen from the label in recent seasons. Hats are just the beginning. Masculine-tailored suits, sometimes paired with shirtless collars and ties, dominate the first several looks down the runway. Even when we finally begin to see some skirts and dresses, the dominating portion of the look remains very male-centric in its approach. Not that this is a bad thing, mind you. Women have a way of wearing men’s suits better than men do. Men tend to find the look attractive, alluring, and even sexy, especially when she’s not wearing a shirt under that suit coat.

Of course, we’ve seen masculine looks before, those are nothing new. What is a bit different is to see a collection so heavily dominated by the look. All the way through to the very end, there are at least traces of masculinity in almost every look shown. Hints at ties, buckled suspenders, and pseudo-vests come through with delightful creativity. As if to cement the look, Armani chooses this collection to bring back the coat dress, for better or worse. Some have panned that look in the past, saying it is too drab and boxy. With Armani’s careful tailoring, though, I find it totally workable and probably a good look for a number of women.

Color is rather absent from this collection, though. Where we saw a lot of shiny and printed blues and greens for the spring collection, this season is a lot more monochrome, heavy on black and white looks. There are a few ensembles with touches of light blue, but the vast majority of this huge collection (almost 60 looks by my count) are done in black and white with some grey tossed into the mix. I think the color palette helps reinforce the masculine look of the collection, one which Armani seems strong on preserving.

What I think women will enjoy most about this line is that the trousers a very full, but not too long, generally stopping just above the ankles. While most of the shoes shown this morning were flats or low-heeled, one could easily pair an ankle-high boot with these looks for a bit of added warmth and they still look absolutely wonderful.

Armani gives us so very many wonderful choices in this Emporio collection. Take your time and enjoy shopping, mixing and matching the separates, making the look your own. Just watch out for those hats; they really may attract cats.

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