This week, Sportswear International talked to David Bianchi, co-owner of Bravi Ragazzi with stores in Forte dei Marmi/Pietrasanta, Italy. According to Bianchi, super-slim fits are out and cool vintage is in - both for outerwear and jeanswear. Interview by Maria Cristina Pavarini

Tell us about the concept of Bravi Ragazzi.
Bravi Ragazzi store Forte dei Marmi
Bravi Ragazzi store Forte dei Marmi
Our stores address both men and women, though men represent 60% of our clientele. Together with my business partner, David Da Prato, I run our stores since 2003. They initially had a more pure jeanswear and streetwear attitude, though, since 2006 we have given them a more trend-driven direction and started offering different brands, more sportswear chic- oriented due to modified market needs.

Which brands do you have in your portfolio?
Right now we offer brands like L'Autre Chose, Happiness, People, Levi's Made & Crafted and Levi's Vintage, Fred Perry, Barbour, Vintage 55, PRPS, The North Face, Adidas Originals, Sun 68 and Virtus Palestre. Slightly more dressy brands are Sucre and Cold Case.

What are your bestsellers right now?
Among our current bestsellers is, for instance, Vintage 55 with its coated cotton 3/4 outer jackets. People like it for its Cordura-like aspect, though much softer at hand, and its refined leather details. Also successful are other vintage image jackets.

Bravi Ragazzi store Forte dei Marmi
Bravi Ragazzi store Forte dei Marmi
Moreover, for men, bestsellers are checked shirts and bow-ties. I didn't expect it, but it is happening. Most popular are bow-ties in mustard and green. Well-matching are shirts by Bevilacqua, an Italian historical shirt brand from the '50s that offers shirts with checks or fancy prints by Liberty.

In general t-shirts are selling well. Italian t-shirt brand Happiness is still number one thanks to its variety of prints. Also selling well are t-shirts by Moto and All Inclusive - this one is characterized by a wide offer of prints and most popular are styles with Thai motive prints like dragons and carps. It is especially successful because it’s made out of top quality cotton and sold at a retail price of €29.

Customers are also keen for knitwear - especially thicker knits with torchons and different surface motives. Soho is one of our bestselling knitwear brands because of its great detailing such as beautiful buttons and trimmings. Slightly more comfy fits are looked for - super tight fits are out. Cool accessories are small bracelets by Spanish brand Una de 50.

What about denim?
Modern vintage is cool for jeanswear. Among our bestsellers is a new jeans style by Levi's Vintage both for men and women. It is a boyfriend cut with a tight leg end. It is more comfy and modern, though always cool. It is available in two washes - a lighter blue version and a darker one - even if both are very clean and uniform and have a natural aged image - slightly whiter at the knees, as if you had really worn them. In general, clean looks without breakings are hot. It is no longer a super lightweight pair of jeans as in the past, rather about 12-13 oz. Generally speaking, I see a return to jeans after some seasons where I had mostly sold chinos and baby cord chinos. Though I still sell well cord trousers - both chinos and five-pockets - in grey, cream white and washed black.

For women, also other styles by Levi's Made & Crafted are successful, both boot-cut styles or wide trousers as pajama pants, though without any logo and simply refined with small leather detailing.

What are the future trends in your opinion?

Regarding a future evolution, I see that women are returning to a punk-inspired image with gothic elements and skull decors, while men are going into a more smart and elegant direction, mostly the ‘traveler gentlemen’. In general, people are looking more for quality and are willing to find support and advice from sales people. It is a sign that they like to be guided.