“There are dinner jackets and then there are dinner jackets…” Brioni certainly describes the latter, and while these suits may not come with James Bond’s body, they’re sure to suggest his debonair charm. From 1995-99, the company designed the jet-setting spy’s bespoke wardrobe and introduced the public to the beauty of sartorial refinement, but their bespoke craftsmanship and attention to detail have been present since their beginning.
Indisputably one of the top fashion houses for men’s bespoke garments, Brioni has always catered to the individual. The brand’s master tailors, trained by its own Scuola Sartori Nazareno Fonticoli, understand the lines of a man’s body. The school, created in 1985, continues the legacy of Brioni’s co-founder Nazareno Fonticoli, expanding on his vision from the tailor’s own hometown of Penne, Italy. Abandoning the superfluous accents of 1950s and 1960s fashion, Fonticoli streamlined glamour. Following the same approach to menswear, the program, his namesake, ensures a continuity of Brioni’s signature style. After years of research and practice, each tailor learns to recognize the effect of a client’s posture, and whether it’s a certain swagger or lean of the shoulder, every suit is sure to accommodate its owner. Carefully measured, a Brioni jacket fits as a second skin. Meticulous, the Brioni tailor makes certain that every stage of construction undergoes strict regulation with the help of the company at-large. While the fashion house offers the intimacy of a personal tailor, it assures the experience of a much larger organization. As Todd Barrato, COO of Brioni USA, explains, the brand values “style over fashion, quality before compromise. We invest a lot of time into exclusive fabric research and development. As we work internally with our own Brioni factories, we can control every aspect of design and quality to ensure that each Brioni product has a consistent look, feel, and expression.”
Concerned with the utility of their designs, the employees of Brioni thoughtfully compose each piece, so that “there are many elements in the collection that are season-less; such as waterproof silk outerwear, feather weight cashmere knits, unconstructed blazers, and elegant suiting in the finest super 180’s and 200’s wool.” In line with such expectations, fabrics are tested for elasticity before being used in any garment, and such statistics are then applied to insure the fit of less supple material, such as silk, mohair, and linen. In its creation, a single garment will go through 220 distinct steps to meet the fashion house’s “standard of perfection,” one which Barrato assures has “always been a source of pride for those who create and those who wear Brioni.”
It should come as no surprise that Ian Fleming’s Hollywood hero would come to Brioni for his personal fitting. Perpetually 40, James Bond has been the long-time symbol of elite style. As with all their customers, the tailors at Brioni designed for Bond a classic wardrobe, both discreet and elegant. Perhaps best described by Barrato, each Brioni tailor works with the understanding that “good taste, exquisite quality, and elegance never go out of fashion.” This creed is then espoused with the irreplaceable rapport between tailor and client. As a result, after 22 hours of work with 5,000 to 7,000 hand-done stitches, each suit promises to be one of a kind, from fabric and patterns especially woven for Brioni, to the particulars of the design.
An exclusive service, Brioni’s bespoke tailoring sets the standard for men’s eveningwear and redefines the nature of simple sportswear. Fully aware that “the Brioni customer is a global traveler,” Barrato assures that the company’s worldwide expansion intends to serve “him/her in every corner of the world.” And with “distribution in several points throughout Asia and Europe, including openings in Shanghai, Tokyo, and St. Petersburg,” the fashion house is well on its way to achieving such an ambitious goal.
Aware of the precedent set by its past collections and assertiveness of its style, Brioni “translate’s [its own] history into a modern collection.” The brand’s confidence is well-founded; few combine wool and silk with such sophistication. Theirs is a tradition of strong lines and tactful design, work that provides a cinematic grace to the worldly man.
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