Men's Style (Australia) - - Contents -

Our chat with Luigi Lar­dini, founder of lux­ury Ital­ian menswear brand Lar­dini

Acheck of the In­sta­gram page of Luigi Lar­dini con­firms that the man who founded his epony­mous la­bel in Italy’s La Marche re­gion back in 1978 not only shapes the brand, he lives the brand.

In Aus­tralia re­cently, where Lar­dini is sold through lux­ury depart­ment store Har­rolds, Creative Di­rec­tor Luigi and brother An­drea (who man­ages the tech­ni­cal side of the op­er­a­tion) re­flected on the jour­ney which has taken them from a teenager’s dream to create lux­u­ri­ous menswear rooted in the tra­di­tions of Ital­ian tai­lor­ing to a brand with an in­ter­na­tional rep­u­ta­tion for push­ing sar­to­rial bound­aries within a frame­work of metic­u­lous work­man­ship.

As seen in Luigi’s own ensem­bles on so­cial me­dia, this means high­qual­ity gar­ments with a fo­cus on fab­ric and de­tail­ing, ex­em­pli­fied most notably by the fa­mous fab­ric flower Lar­dini works onto the but­ton­holes of its beau­ti­ful blaz­ers.

In a world of in­creas­ing ca­su­al­iza­tion and the move­ment to less for­mal ‘ath­leisure’ wear, be­spoke jack­ets and blaz­ers re­main the core fo­cus of Lar­dini and will al­ways do so, says Luigi.

“It’s im­por­tant to know how to dress for the right oc­ca­sion and in some in­stances the jacket cre­ates the el­e­ment of el­e­gance,” he tells Men’s Style. “We be­lieve that a suit jacket will el­e­vate the out­fit, which is why our roots will re­main in tai­lor­ing.”

Lar­dini re­in­forces his claim by ob­serv­ing how men have changed their ap­proach to dress­ing since his fam­ily founded the com­pany in the late 1970s.

“There is a bet­ter un­der­stand­ing of so­phis­ti­ca­tion now [among men],” he says. “Men are aware of their style, the im­age they want to por­tray and the looks which com­ple­ment their shape. Our client has also de­vel­oped a fur­ther un­der­stand­ing of qual­ity, which has im­pacted on their pur­chases.

“Men in gen­eral are be­com­ing more in­ter­ested in the idea of be­spoke. These are the men who are at­ten­tive to way they dress and ad­mire the de­tails. These are the el­e­ments which make a man more el­e­gant.”

That “un­der­stand­ing of qual­ity” is re­spon­si­ble for the suc­cess of Lar­dini and in­her­ent in the fam­ily-run, ‘Made In Italia’ busi­ness, with Lar­dini’s pro­duc­tion fa­cil­ity at Filot­trano hav­ing also pro­duced gar­ments for the likes of Burberry, Etro, Valentino and Ver­sace. De­scrib­ing its menswear as “el­e­gant but in­for­mal”, there is a pal­pa­ble lux­u­ri­ous­ness in both fab­ric and con­struc­tion to the suits and jack­ets seen on this page.

De­sign col­lab­o­ra­tions with the likes of in­ter­na­tional menswear in­flu­encer Nick Wooster and Gabriele Pasini have helped in­tro­duce Lar­dini in­ter­na­tion­ally to a younger au­di­ence via so­cial me­dia.

“So­cial me­dia has cer­tainly broad­ened our clien­tele and with it, has changed the world of fash­ion and de­vel­oped the ‘now’ cul­ture,” says Luigi. “So­cial me­dia and the dig­i­tal world have also played a sig­nif­i­cant role in how con­sumers are in­spired.”

We end our chat by ob­serv­ing that in a world in which many fam­ily busi­nesses, in­clud­ing in Italy, are sold to larger cor­po­rate in­ter­ests, it must be a source of pride to re­main a gen­uine Made In Italy com­pany in which four sib­lings hold key po­si­tions.

“Yes, and that is clear from the pos­i­tive sign that the com­pany has grown over the years, a growth where we have been able to se­lect cus­tomers,” says Lar­dini. “Our clien­tele have an in­depth un­der­stand­ing of what it means to dress.”

Avail­able through Har­rolds, Aus­tralia’s Lux­ury Depart­ment Store; har­

‘A suit jacket will el­e­vate the out­fit, which is why our roots will re­main in tai­lor­ing.’ Luigi Lar­dini ( LEFT)

Looks from the Lar­dini S/S18 Col­lec­tion (left, and below).

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