How will Berto celebrate its 130th anniversary in 2017?
In 1887, we started producing sails for Venice, jumped into workwear, then into home textiles, shirting and denim. This long path made us enlarge our product offer but also and especially made us become highly flexible and able to offer a variety of products that can be compared to an almost custom-made selection.
Through this whole year, we want to celebrate this anniversary with events, collaborations, and dedicated capsules. We concentrated on three main product categories that made us become the company we have become: yarn-dyed fabrics, shirting fabrics and authentic denim.
For this Kingpins edition, we have just launched our first "Lost in Time” capsule collection. This new capsule can conform with most different interpretations and employs.
Part of this capsule are items inspired by our History collection that became renowned when the French brand Marithé + François Girbaud employed it in the ‘90s and made a bestselling style with it. This fabric was made with a special yarn created for home textiles, though after its application for apparel, became very cool.
Following the path of experimentation for f/w 2018/2019, we also created a new collection that we call Techno-Chic based on the idea of performance wear added with a sense of wellness.
We also decided to meet clients and friends at Kingpins Amsterdam offering them an aperitif, food and wine from the Veneto region, where we come from, as we want to underline our tie with our origin, as we feel proud to be part of the Italian value chain of denim.
Referring to collaborations we also want to potentiate our Berto4YoungTalents project as we want to be always more connected and serve the youngest generation of designers. They are the future and we want to celebrate this future with them.
How did Berto change throughout these 130 years?
More than once we had to change strategy and sometimes also business in order to face market difficulties. Our story started in 1887 and developed thanks to textile know-how and commitment. Much has changed through the years, but not everything. Our courage to always innovate while respecting tradition, for instance, has always guided us. For this, we have managed to find our place in the international market making our craftsmanship ability match the industrial manufacturing approach.
Flexibility and tailor-made service have become our strongest point: We learned how to make tailor-made products for our clients. This way we have become uniquely able to create highly innovative collaborations despite the different segments they were meant for.
Among most interesting examples for this kind of tailor-made projects were collaborations like denim glasses for Ray-Ban and Chanel, armchairs and sofas for Berto Salotti, and seats for Ferrari cars.
How have jeans and fashion markets changed?
Today’s market has completely changed compared to the past and so will the one of tomorrow. With the advent of Millennials, who refuse everything that is conventional, we are facing a moment we cannot recognize specific trends. Still ruling are stretch jeans, though we see a strong return to rigid denim. Skinny styles continue to set the trend – despite many consider them out – though many stores are offering a great variety of boyfriend jeans. We are now in a liquid market where Berto maintains its competitiveness while remaining a creative lab able to create products for every need.
What new evolutions will characterize this market?
We think that the market will be always more global, but at the same time, always more local. It will be a market where many juxtaposed different trends will be living side by side and where the difficulty to make forecasts will become always more evident. It will be a highly challenging market we want to face with a strategy based on innovation, originality and speed. Fragmented targets will make us even more competitive in terms of custom-made products: for each desire we will be offering a specific fabric.
How will your company change in the future?
Down-to-earthness and perseverance are two elements upon which Berto is basing its entire work. For the next years we will not see crucial changes. We see a slow, though constant decline of our own established business model and tradition within a superfast and unpredictable market.
Tradition doesn’t mean that we continue to do things the way they have always been done but rather grasp the true cultural source of how we can do it. We see a future of great innovation but also an enhancement of our own roots.