IN PRAISE OF THE HAND-STITCHED BUTTONHOLE!
I love my country. Despite everything, I find that certain things are possible only in Italy. We are quick-thinking and intuitive, we find solutions that are often unthinkable in other countries, where they claim everything works better.
We Italians have something that others envy us for (aside from our food and art) and that is the vitality of our Workshops and Artisans. The people working with needle and thread on a hand-stitched buttonhole, those who still take the time to patiently weave or combine little pieces of leather as though they were making a mosaic.
I'm also thinking about those who spending long hours on highly precise work, applying one stud at a time to jackets and bags that later become masterpieces, or the technicians and fabric designers who assemble wool or cotton yarns with other innovative materials to make truly unique Italian fabrics.
The Italian fashion industry is built on these people in the background, the people who work quietly day after day. They are not well-known but they have made the name of Italian-made goods around the world. No one knows that Rosetta or Luigi worked on creating exclusive garments.
These are family stories passed down from hand to hand, generation to generation, through men and women who make jackets or accessories unique. I'm not the first to say it, but beauty lies in the details, in an invisible stitch, a patiently created embroidery, a print on leather made after a never-ending number of tests and trials.
The artisan-seamstresses (or "artiseamstresses", as I call them) who I work with every day are quiet, humble, reserved people whose "healthy work" is far removed from the business plan of the brands they work for. They are men and women working with their hands, with years of experience, with what I see as real “technical experience” through which virtuoso style touches can be created, however improbable they may seem. Their experimentations change the fashion world.
What makes Italy stand out is our ability to work with unique, original techniques that survive only here. It's no wonder many foreign brands come to Italy to have their collections made, because only certain details made by Italians can make the difference.
Artisan workshops (I find this term demeaning, so I prefer to call them Italian expertise laboratories) find solutions and solve problems. Without them, my creativity would be meaningless. When talking about Italian excellence, I immediately think of my artisans and of the fact that my success is largely down to them, to good Italian manufacturing, because only a mixture of artisan work and the global economy allows us to remain unique.