ThE ORIGIN OF FLEECES

The latest wool fabric addition to Vitale Barberis Canonico’s H.O.P.E. capsule collection is a declaration of the brand’s devotion to sustainability, provenance and local heritage.

A flock of sheep in Biella, northern Italy, the home of Vitale Barberis Canonico.

There’s more to ‘seasonal change’, in the world of top-tier apparel, than the ephemeral whimsy visible on catwalks. For the largely unsung specialists operating at earlier stages of the supply chain, the phrase — as it did to Upper Paleolithic fishermen and the earliest wielders of primitive scythes in the Fertile Crescent — refers to the rhythms of nature.

A group of individuals who understand this profoundly is the R&D department at Vitale Barberis Canonico. (For the sprinkling of readers who have never encountered this hallowed name, it is an Italian fabric mill established in 1663 in the northern Biella region, 50 miles north of Turin.) These august people know that the sheep farmer is to the designer or the tailor what the vigneron is to the vintner, the local horticulturist to the head chef at a five-star farm-to-table restaurant.

Published

March 2022

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