As an American, I was fortunate to discover the riches and beauty of Berlin several years ago. Having lived in a few other European cities, Berlin was a breath of fresh air. Strangely unpretentious, or at least untouched by certain pretensions that infect other major European capitals, its openness was welcome. The history of the city cannot be hidden, nor has it been, and despite the darkness of much of that recent history, the beauty of its traditions also emerges clearly. I fell in love with a city!
If anything, the main hurdle to its accessibility, at least to me, was its high fashion. Certainly, Berlin is famous for its small designers as well as the flashy shops of established designers. Somehow, all of this seemed inaccessible to me, a college professor with a more traditional sense of men’s style. Perhaps “alienation” is too strong a word, but everything about Berlin fashion seemed foreign.
With regret, in the past year (as I am now back in the States), I have noticed that in fact, Berlin is of course home to shops that carry the banner of traditional men style, albeit with a distinctive modern flair that is not flashy yet firm. Shibumi seems to be one of these. It is a strange thing for me to advocate in writing a reason for a “Gutschein”, but perhaps in looking forward to a trip to Berlin in the coming summer, it would provide a type of invitation to acquaint myself with a vibrant, and to me previously hidden, world of a modern and yet traditional sensibility. It would be another reason to discover a facet of a vibrant city.