With the new limited edition Geoffrey Kent Safari luggage range launching in July, we wanted to let you know why we chose to manufacture our product range in Italy and the quality assurance it provides us as a company.
A global leader
Over the course of time, Italy has been deemed the global leader in tanned leather goods, with exports today reaching the ports of 125 countries worldwide. Despite strong competition, Italy’s history of quality tanned leather production and strategic geography as Europe’s Southern flank has enabled them to capitalise on a strong import and export position- in 2017 leather exports stood at approximately €4 billion… impressive, right?
Made in Italy – it’s in the name
Italian craftsmanship, or ‘artigianato’ as it’s called on the boot, is undeniably one and the same with the cultural image of Italy. From the hand-made pasta you can see being prepared in the restaurant windows in the back streets of Rome, to the hand-made shoes you can buy from boutiques in Milan, the history is there, right in front of you.
In an age where you all too commonly see garments being mass produced in a fully automated factory in China or Pakistan, we wanted to stay aligned with our founder’s vision of giving his clients only the best. On his travels, Geoffrey Kent has seen first hand the lack of quality and care that comes from mass production and feels strongly that if you want to produce something of great value, specialist knowledge is of paramount importance. We therefore decided to make our luxury leather goods in a place where passion for crafting the best products outweighs the manufacturer’s short-term profit goals.
With the evolution of modern technology there are thousands of different processes to tan leather, most using a range of chemicals. We’ve found the best Italian crafters that use an all-natural and traditional liming and dying technique which results in a better and stronger leather than those that are mass produced using chemicals.
Turning the leather into the finished product
Although large amounts of Italian leather are exported around the world to be manufactured, some of it stays in the country to be turned into the finest luxury shoes, bags and furniture. In the modern day setting, the Italian craftsman creates a hybrid approach to manufacturing bags or shoes. Technology provides important scalability and the cutting edge production methods needed to compete on a global scale. However, they stay true to their routes by incorporating the emotion and passion into the finished product by hand. Detailing and creating the bespoke finish of each item ensures the ‘Made in Italy’ stamp of quality rings true to its name.
It’s no wonder then that we chose to produce our new product range in Monza, Italy- a strategically placed city just north of Milan. The city is a hub for manufacturing and trade activities and also boasts one of the most famous race tracks in history. With our company headquarters in nearby Monaco, we are easily able to oversee the production of our goods- something you won’t get with production lines far overseas.
Later in July we will be making a trip to the production line and will update you with a blog in which we will share the intricate details of the manufacturing process, and introduce you to the crafters themselves. Stay tuned.