A man in full

Be­hind the savoir faire and el­e­gant craft of Ber­luti re­sides artis­tic direc­tor charged with ex­pand­ing the la­bel’s of­fer­ings. He tells how he went about cre­at­ing a con­tem­po­rary sil­hou­ette for the new Ber­luti man

Hong Kong Tatler - - Style | Men -

Justine Lee

Can you tell us how you first came across the brand? It was ac­tu­ally when I was still in school; I re­mem­ber I was still a stu­dent in Italy and we were read­ing an ar­ti­cle about Andy Warhol. It cov­ered such great de­tails, in­clud­ing how Warhol had a pair of

Alessan­dro Sartori,

shoes made in 1962 by a brand named Ber­luti. I wasn’t familiar with the French brand at the time, but I made a point of vis­it­ing the store dur­ing my next school trip to Paris. I even­tu­ally went back to buy a pair on my sec­ond trip that very same year. Do you still own them? Be­lieve it or not, yes I do! They’re at home in Mi­lan and they look strik­ingly sim­i­lar to the ones in stores now. I re­mem­ber I styled them with ev­ery­thing from the clas­sic suit to a shirt with jeans or chi­nos. I even wore them a year ago. Let’s fast-for­ward to your time as a designer; how did you get your foot in the door at Ber­luti? It was al­most four years ago and I was in­vited to Paris to have a meet­ing with the cur­rent CEO of Ber­luti, An­toine Ar­nault. At the time, I didn’t know the brand I was in­ter­view­ing for, but I was ec­static to learn that the po­si­tion was for Ber­luti. An­toine and I shared our vi­sions about the mod­ern man, and also our idea for a brand that of­fered both a cu­rated and a be­spoke wardrobe for the dis­cern­ing man. We were both so in sync with our ideas that it wasn’t long be­fore we be­gan work­ing to­gether. What makes Ber­luti’s col­lec­tion of cloth­ing so spe­cial? An­toine and I al­most im­me­di­ately de­cided that we were look­ing to de­sign a life­style. We felt there was a need for be­spoke tailor­ing and even sports­wear in the mar­ket, which also echoes the brand’s her­itage in cus­tom-made shoes. Most brands start with ready-to-wear and even­tu­ally of­fer madeto-mea­sure, a form in cloth­ing con­struc­tion that’s still done in­dus­tri­ally. At Ber­luti, we started at the op­po­site end of the spec­trum. We are the only la­bel that of­fers men a 360-de­gree be­spoke wardrobe— ev­ery­thing from tailor­ing

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