MILAN–Effortless elegance is something that is often innate and not taught, but we can possibly provide you with the next best thing… We caught up with the co-founder of men’s Made in Italy e-commerce Cardano Club. Roberta Frattini shares her view on what it takes to dress like a real “Italian Gentleman.”
BACO: What are some of the things that are a MUST for the modern Italian gentleman?
RF: It s always difficult to say what is a must have for the Italian gentleman but here’s my list:
1. The artisanal tie
2. A 100% silk pocket square
3. Silver cuff links (possibly customized).
4. Handmade shoes with matching leather belt
5. Navy blue knee-length “filo di scozia” fine cotton socks
6. A bespoke suit
7. Bespoke white shirt with initials
8. A customized shoe care box
9. A one of kind shaving brush
BACO: What are some non-tangible qualities a modern gentleman must possess?
RF: Knowledge: we believe that real exclusivity is not driven anymore by price or big brands but the knowledge of many meanings behind an item. Exclusivity: craftsmanship is by its nature a limited edition business. Let’s be honest you don’t want a tie sold in 100 items or more. We have “one of a kind” ties. The important item in a man’s wardrobe is a sense of Timeless Elegance, never trendy.
BACO: What are some of the brands you carry with the most interesting artisanal or family history and traditions?
RF: All our brands have a strong artisanal history , in some cases it is a very long story (Marinella, Maglia, Merola, Valobra, Acqua di Biella, …) in some other cases it is much shorter (Passaggio Cravatte, Marfin , Sciamat) but not less interesting. We want to support young artisans and help them to emerge. It is our mission and we are genuinely enthusiastic about this.
BACO: What items are a must for this summer?
RF: This summer the must is definitely a handmade extrafine panama hat by Tesi and an elegant swim short by Petronius1926 with the same ties prints and mother of pearl button.
BACO: What is a must for Pitti?
RF: A pair of handmade sunglasses by Bob Sdrunk
BACO: Never ?
RF: The sockless phenomenon. We hope this trend fades….it is not that elegant and not very Italian.
BACO: LOL. You aren’t the only person who thinks that. Ok, always?
RF: Handmade vintage sunglasses by Bob Sdrunk in June and a handmade umbrella by Francesco Maglia for Pitti’s January edition.
IN THIS ISSUE: Africa’s Mens Wear is Ripe for Growth, PITTI PREVIEW: Stars of Constellation Africa, Making Men’s Wear In Rwanda, Cardano Club: Dressing Like A Real Italian Gentleman , Pitti Uomo Accessories Preview, Modernizing Artisan Allure at Pitti