Italy’s Vietti Shop group founded in 1952 by Maria and Vittorio Vietti continues to play a leading role in the Italian retail panorama. With its four boutiques in Italy and one in Switzerland, it has evolved and still garners attention from contemporary demanding consumers of all ages. Such a result is possible thanks to Gabriele Vietti, CEO of the group and son of the founders, and the intense research that he and his team focus on. High-quality fashion and new online projects involving cool fashion curators are setting the tone for this longtime insider’s future.
What is your present vision of the fashion market?
In the last few years there has been a real revolution in the fashion world. Trends are discovered on the streets, new brands become famous through Instagram, the biggest influencers are below the age of 25 and Thursday drops have turned into a sort of religious ritual. All this at the expense of quality, research and originality: all that matters is having everything, now. Even brands with a long heritage are conforming to this reality and focus on designing collections that are anything but lasting, aimed to reach a high turnover and only made for commercial reasons. Fashion enthusiasts, an always younger audience, most of the time ignore the history of a brand, but want to own a piece at all costs.
How is Vietti involved in this process?
Vietti Shop is against this approach to fashion, especially because we believe that fashion is more than just a product. It has also a cultural value. We support both brands with a long history and newborn ones whose main characteristic isn’t just a big logo: product research, innovative technologies and authenticity are what we believe in. We look for cool, unique and new items set to become part of the collective imagination and expected to leave a mark on the whole society. This is exactly why we decided to explore this concept of fashion from another point of view and involve some protagonists of the industry.
In fact, we have recently started out new project “In Talks with...” and released our first drop of opinions and images by Daniel Pacitti. He is very young but his style is forward-thinking. Sneakers and tech garments are his favorite items. For him fashion isn’t about showing off a brand. He prefers labels that do research and opts for high-quality items, which he mixes in super cool outfits. We met Daniel to find out more about his aesthetic and his inspirations and now want to share this with our consumers. In a few days we will launch a second similar project that will involve Christina Paik.
How often do you want to offer such projects?
All our projects start to be planned only when the idea comes. We don't want to bore our customer but also we don't want to lose our connection with them. Our aim in to explain what is Vietti about and where we are based–including our store in Switzerland, in Crans-Montana. The project “A talk with” is a concept that allows us to show our favorite fashion curators and what fashion culture is for us. As mentioned before, we don't have a specific planning or strategy as we will show our next project only when the idea is clear and we love it.
Do you also sell via e-commerce? What feedback do you get through it?
Our online store debuted in 2015. Right now we are getting great attention from our Japanese customer base and are thinking to develop a specific area dedicated to them.
What about your brick-and-mortar stores? What are the current bestsellers of your store and why?
We have four stores in Italy and one in Switzerland. Referring to our store in Domodossola, our bestseller brands are Gucci as number one; Stone Island is our preferred outerwear brand as it is an Italian craftsmanship brand highly focused on innovation; Needles is a Japanese brand with very limited distribution as it is only sold by us and another store throughout the country–plus it’s one of ASAP Rocky’s most favorite brands; Prada is now living an incredible revival as their shows are attracting the whole world–even the youngest; for this f/w collection Undercover is strongly inspired by the movie 2001: A Space Odyssey and collectors are going crazy for it; out of our sneaker brand mix, Asics is the bestseller and matches well with our whole store’s selection; also Burberry is working well as it has been among our bestsellers for years. All these brands represent our taste and have been getting excellent feedback from customers from all our surroundings.
Do your customers buy according to their favorite brand, style or impulse?
Many of our young customers buy according to fashion trend, while others buy according to taste and style and because they trust our selection.
Our ability is to create stories and a taste that deeply attracts our customers who love our brand selection and store layout.
Where do you order from? How do you inform yourself about trends?
Our company started in 1952 as a family-run business. Thanks our expertise and heritage we know how to offer products that reflect the newest trends and know how to mix them with our aesthetic.
We generally don't like to buy brands just because they are on trend but because we always want to create a brand mix that identifies with our own insignia. Trend and brand research is spontaneously done by the whole family. Instagram is an important source of inspiration, though especially useful are traveling and a constant scout for new subcultures. Moreover, we evaluate brands according to their history and distribution strategy.
How important is the communication with regular customers? How do you communicate with them?
Our salespeople are responsible for keeping relationship with our special customers by informing them personally about our new arrivals. Alternatively, we keep customers updated via Instagram and newsletters.
What are most important trends, in general, for s/s 2019?
For casual- and streetwear, colors like frozen yellow, tie-dye techniques, nylon and activewear pieces worn as lifestyle are hot. For high-end fashion there is not a single trend as all these important brands offer products that are so different from each other. Moreover, all the recent changes of creative directors, logos and brand image will bring many surprises and novelties. What I personally think is that they will all bet on a less formal and relaxed style.
Did you add any new labels to your assortment?
Starting from s/s 2019 we will also offer Balenciaga, Christian Louboutin, Saint Laurent, Studio Alch and South2 West8.
How does your store differ from other stores?
In some ways running a family business is difficult because we have to get along with everyone but it is the family that makes our company unique. Also the area where we are located–Lake Maggiore and the beautiful landscapes in the middle of the mountains surrounding us–makes our aesthetic unique.
What do you like about your customers?
Generational transition: we see entire families passing from our store since their childhood until when they get older. Moreover, our young customer base is growing a lot.
How important is the interior, the atmosphere and the whole package?
Fashion together with art, design, music and lifestyle all belong together. As art and design are our great passions, we pay attention to the smallest detail about interior design in our store. Moreover, we are always willing to transform our boutiques into new attractive locations. Our next goal is to create a future-minded store.