How did La Ferramenta start?
It started after working for three years at Back Door Bottega, our other retail store for basketball apparel and limited edition sneakers in Bologna. There came a point when I felt the need to express my style and my passion for fashion in all its aspects: clothing, shoes, glasses and accessories.
How did you end up in fashion?
I have been dreaming of working in fashion since I was a child. Growing up, I used to spend a lot of time at my grandma’s store or at various shoe stores. I experienced what it felt like to be one in charge of a store. I used to try selling shoes even to my mom, my older brother and even my dad. Since I was young, I have loved understanding people’s personal style, trying to find them the more suitable pair of shoes or piece of clothing. My passion for sneakers started thanks to basketball, a sport I’ve played for almost my entire life. I started buying - and dreaming of buying- all the Jordans. There was a sort of natural segue from collecting rare and particular pairs of sneakers to the similarly meticulous world of fashion.
What is the concept behind the store?
It encompasses everything I like! I like to discover new brands and present to clients a selection that reflects my own style and taste.
How do you decide what items to buy and curate each season?
I try to select everything I would like to see hanging in my closet. I don’t follow the fashion trends, and I am not crazy about brands that I find too commercial.
Describe the Italian aesthetic, and how it might differ from the French, British, or American.
Attention to detail and high manufacturer’s standards when it come to making clothes. Italy is a country where people are aesthetic. Italians love to distinguish themselves from others. In order to do that they pay a lot of attentions to details, and they try to curate a unique look.
Tell us about Sprezzatura, this old Italian term that loosely means planned carelessness - or subtle nonchalance. How does it manifest in Italian culture and aesthetic?
In a way, somehow, Italian’s find a way to be cool even when they don’t invest a lot in their look. There are a lot of people who look like they do not pay a lot of attention to their look, but actually they make careful choices regarding color and clothes.
Tell us about Bologna.
You already know! Bologna is the best city in all of Italy to live in! Its architecture is astonishing. Every single angle and detail of its center has a story to tell. It is such a small city you can navigate it just walking around. It was Europe’s Capital of Culture in 2000. It is a city full of museums and historical places to visit. Most importantly, it has the oldest university in the world. People here are very friendly. It is very easy to make friends with someone from here. Bolognesi are very open minded people, always ready to make foreigners feel welcome. I guess it has a lot to do with the fact that here there are a lot students coming from all over the world. The food! Most people that try our typical food will fall in love with it. Recently, Bologna was nominated as one of the foremost culinary locations in the world by the New York Times and Forbes. Is it that obvious that I love my city?
Where or who do you draw personal inspiration from?
I don’t have a specific muse. I like to observe people that I meet on the street or during my travels, regardless if it is for work or for pleasure. We can be each other’s inspiration. Everyone has got something to give. Everyone has personal tastes and a story to tell. My job requires me to draw influence by what transpires around me. My job allows me to travel and meet different people and learn of different ideas and tastes.
Tell us about the collaboration process with Guillame Philibert of Filling Pieces and creating a La Ferramenta specific shoe silhouette.
Our collaborations started in a bar in Paris during men’s fashion week. I have bonded with Gui since the first time he came to the store. It was then that we started talking about creating something unique together. I have always wanted to design shoes. I was incredibly honored and excited when Gui asked me to help design this collaboration. After a year of back and forth, we managed to create a truly unique silhouette. We have combined two iconic models of Filling Pieces. At the base of the Low Top, we have removed all leather items along the sole, and on the top and around the laces we have applied the detail that made the Mountain Cut their second most popular model. I have tried to used the typical colours of Bologna (red), Amsterdam (orange), and of the Italian hardware store (la ferramenta). I love them. (Seen on the right).
What are some of your favorite brands right now?
Without a doubt my favorite brands right now are Ami, Our Legacy, Paltò, and Laneus.
How has social media changed fashion and your business model?
Social media has allowed any store to reach a vast majority of clients and to showcase their items instantaneously. Anyone nowadays can stay updated with the newest fashion releases. Though I believe this is a positive development, at one point, to step foot into a store and try on the new items the fashion industry is offering is the most rewarding experience.
What are some of your goals for the near-future?
My goal is to create a more efficient online store that can allow me to export my creations outside of Italy.
Your favorite city and why?
In Europe, I fell in love with Copenhagen. It is a very cutting-edge city when it comes to fashion and technology. As far as the U.S., I love LA. I would move there tomorrow!
Your favorite color and why?
White! I would always wear white. It is the most elegant color and it is never banal.