Vulpilist Magazine brings you regular interviews of influencial menswear men and women – bloggers, craftmen, businessmen…
Today, let us introduce Stéphane Butticé, blogger, photograph, classical menswear entrepreneur and man of taste.
Vulpilist Magazine: Hello Stéphane, you are known for your blog and photos, as much as a photographer as a model. Can you tell us more about your passion for classical menswear?
My almost maniacal love for what is well done must have come from my grandfather who always dressed with magnificent garments. He owned just what was enough. He dressed elegantly, it came naturally to him. I remember my grandfather in our family cottage wearing a Charvet dressing gown and Edward Green shoes at dawn while trimming roses in the garden.
My grandfather was a long-time customer of the Old England boutique (editor’s note: department store in France and Belgium). What stroke me is that they didn’t sell brands, they sold products, all traditionaly made. Products that age with you and last a lifetime. Craftsmen need man hour as well as rare and fine materials to produce beautiful clothes. The result is pure beauty, objective Beauty. Beauty respects proportions, volumes and materials. It’s the same for cooking, cocktails and women and men…
I had to acquire this taste for Beauty and details to make the Butticé shirts & ties brand happen.
Also, I am a blogger since 2014 on gentlemanchemistry.com. The idea of this blog came after visiting a vintage expert in Paris. I wanted to get the same knowledge, get to know menswear History. I reached workshops, began sourcing.
Soon, I got to create photos and videos for Cifonelli (Private Cifo), Sartoria Ripense (The Wolf of Rome), bootmaker Dimitri Gomez (Chaussure à son pied). I soon got to visit craftsmen in Italy, France, Belgium and England. Tailors, shirtmakers, tiemakers, clothiers. I learned a lot. This led me to write in Dandy Magazine, Monsieur Magazine, Arbiter Italie, The Players Italie, les Hardis, The Rake, les Rhabilleurs…
VL: Beside being a classical menswear aficionado, can you tell us about your daily activities? What were your positions before being into menswear?
I was born on December 3rd, 1986, on Negroni O’Clock, in Blois, France. My father was an Italian military officer. I grew up between Rome, Turin and Bruxelles.
I studied Photograhy in Rome between 2006 and 2009 and Communication in Paris. From 2016 to 2019 I was also a salesman for Holland & Sherry in France.
Since my boxing club was shut down due to Covid I spend most of my time working on Butticé and Podcast Gentleman Chemistry. The podcast began in 2019 and features people who live with style. It’s very insightful for the auditors as well as myself. Almost a life lesson in each podcast! I had the chance to interview, Nino Cerruti (Lanificio F.lli Cerruti), Gregory Lellouche (No Man Walks Alone), Catherine Painvin (Tartine & Chocolat), Laurent Laporte (Where is the Cool), Nicolas Melin (De Widehem Automobile), Christophe Tiozzo (Boxing World ChampionWBA), Pierre Degand (Maison Degand), Arthur Leclercq (SuperStitch), Franz-Arthur Mac Elhone (Harry’s Bar), Alex Rash (Serpent à Plume) and Yves Denis – (Dandy Magazine).
VL: Now that you are on the other side of the interview, can you tell us who were your most impressive encounters?
In general I am more impressed by someone who can lift me intellectualy, who doesn’t try to impress with his money and appearance but with his generosity, honesty, politeness. Someone who takes time to simply answer an SMS.
I have a particular good memory of my interview of Nino Cerruti who didn’t let me bring him where I wanted to with my questions. He is still a man of character and strong will despite his age.
Catherine Euvrard, founder of a headhunter office, astonished me with her humanity, her energy, positivity and willingness.
All the interviews bring me a lot of both know-how and experiences. They challenge me everyday and they contribute to making me a better person.
VL: Can you tell us about what stroke you in the building of your wardrobe? A memorable garment? And also your biggest mistake?
The garments that stroke me the most were a blue mohair blazer from Ferdinando Caraceni, a lightweight Summer check jacket made of wool linen and silk, a Sartoria Ripense tweed jacket, Sartoria Peluso blue flannel suit and a houndstooth vintage Crombie jacket. They all marked me with the level of craftsmanship, cut (for example with high armholes) and style. I also remember a suit made by Sartoria Crimi as I had to go to Parlema several times – a 3-hours trip by plane.
A bad experience? A made-to-measure Neapolitan workshop to make a jacket prototype for my brand. The guy in charge didn’t answer emails or phone calls, didn’t respect my written guidelines. The work was hastly done and the level of craftmanship was mediocre. Conclusion: hand made is not always better!
VL: It is known that you like thrifting militaria and to visit Clignancourt flee market in Paris. What is your experience in thrifting classical menswear? Do you like it and why? Also, why do you thrift?
I do love thrifting. Militaria indeed and watches, Ricard ash-trays or 50s to 70s furniture.
I also thrift menswear. However, vintage bespoke suits do not really suit my taste, I prefer a brand new or second-hand ready-to-wear rather than a second-hand bespoke that needs to be altered in most cases.
When thrifting I tend to wait for a bargain to pull the trigger.
Overall, I find that thrifting is a great way to try out new ways of dressing and new styles for less than the price of brand new garments.
VL: You launched your own shirt and ties brand with a distinctive aesthetic. Tell us more about it.
I founded my brand Butticé in 2020, specialized in Neapolitan-made shirts and ties with a timeless style and lasting materials and constructions.
I like to say that I offer a style and not just clothes. I sell what I would wear myself. It’s garments with a distinction going beyond just a plain grenadine tie and a blue striped shirt.
Our first shirt collection exist in 10 different colours hardly available in main street boutiques. Colourful shirts are my favorite, just like Charvet and British do – though I make mine with Neapolitan tradition and a soft construction. I also favor textured farbrics.
They are made with 8 hand made steps: collar, armhole, quarter shoulder, buttonholes, hand made mother of pearl buttons, front gorge, bottom triangolino, travetto.
As for ties, they are hand rolled and I currently have 52. I draw my inspiration from the 60s to the 90s regarding patterns and fabrics.
I now aim to developp sport jackets, suits, belts, loafers and expand internationaly.
VL: Regardless of the size, could you go to Vulpilist, the Sartorial Marketplace and pick your dream outfit?
- Jacket: Caraceni bespoke gunclub sport coat UK42 (sold)
- Shirt: Charvet – bundle of 2 shirts, size 14.5 / 37FR
- Tie: Givenchy silk tie
- Trousers: Ambrosi Signature Model – Sand Cavalry Twill W35 – IT/EU50
- Belt: Losco Paris black leather belt with saddlelike buckle W33 to W35 (sold)
- Shoes: Edward Green Piccadilly in Black 8 – 8 1/2 E
- Coat: Crombie raincoat 34UK
- Scarf: Lanvin light navy wool scarf, chess game print
VL: Let’s assume you have to spend 3 days in Milan where you will have a business meeting, a vernissage in an art gallery and a cocktail, and a day off with your loved one. Your suitcase can only fit 2 jackets, 2 trousers, 2 shoes, 3 shirts, 2 ties and one pocket square. What will you choose?
I would wear a blue suit adapted to the weather (light or heavy) wearing classic loafers. In the trolley I would fit one or two jackets also adapted to the weather (tweed or lightweight), a Levi’s 501 pair of jeans and a vintage high-rise army uniform trousers. Regarding shoes, red socks, blue woven loafers and All Stars sneakers. Accessories? 3 shirts and 2 ties from Butticé, of course.