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ITALIAN STYLE AND THE RISE OF BRUNELLO CUCINELLI 



There are many countries that take pride in their  men’s sartorial traditions.  England has a rich history of tailoring and iconic suiting shops throughout London.  The United States has its heritage tradition and “prep” style that are currently influencing trends worldwide.  Yet no country’s style and dress are so deeply woven into the fabric of its history and daily life as Italy.  Stylish dressing, particularly among men, seems inherent in an Italian’s being.  While there are stylish men around the world in ever increasing numbers, simply put, Italian men are the best dressed in the world.



In Italy, attention to one’s style and an appreciation for fashion and clothing is a way of life.  Men are preternaturally well dressed at all times, exhibiting their personal style and, more importantly, a flair that is unmatched. 

By Scott Wicken

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 Unique, often quirky personal touches are de rigueur and a sense of effortlessness dominates.  It helps that a culture of dressing up is prevalent in Italy and the country boasts a renowned history as one of the finest producers of clothing in the world. Italy is well known for its tradition of fine tailoring, with its suits rivalling England in terms of quality, style, and luxury.  This suiting tradition includes meticulously hand-tailored suits by dedicated craftsmen, as well as  off the rack and made to measure varieties from heavy hitters like Brioni, Kiton, Zegna, Etro, and others.  Italian suiting is, without a doubt, among the world’s finest.  In addition to a long history of high-quality suits, Italy is also a leader in luxurious sportswear, dress shoes, and leather goods, and also produces some of the finest cashmere in the world.  To say that Italy is a sartorial powerhouse would be a massive understatement; there is simply no finer producer of luxury men’s clothing and accessories in the world.



With the global menswear boom still increasing in strength, Italian menswear producers have enjoyed unprecedented success.  As well dressed men evolve their personal style, interest in luxury goods, Italian-style flair, and more formal dressing has become the next evolution in men’s style.  Among Italian menswear labels, no company has enjoyed as meteoric a rise as Brunello Cucinelli.  Headquartered in the medieval city of Solemeo, the label has grown from a small but well regarded knitwear company to a powerhouse producer of some of the finest menswear in the world.  Epitomizing the essence of “casual luxury” that Italians have mastered so perfectly, Cucinelli’s tailored blazers, trousers, dress shirts, and cashmere enjoy cult-like acclaim within menswear ranks.  Cucinelli’s goods have transcended age groups to enjoy truly drool-worthy status across the board (this writer included) and in particular, the younger, tumblr-loving #menswear set.  Its signature item, a soft shouldered, double breasted cashmere blazer is the essence of the luxurious, timeless, and now modern menswear categoryof which Italy is now king.  Despite the clichéd idea of an obnoxiously dressed Italian American mobster, we should all now be so lucky as to “dress like an Italian”.

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Scott Wicken is a Contributing Editor of MMJ. and an apparel industry professional  living in Los Angeles. He writes his own menswear focused blog Sigtweed & Corduroy, www.sigtweedandcorduroy.com and can be found on Twitter at @sigtweed. 

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