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KITON, LESS IS MORE
KITON, LESS IS MORE. Kiton surpassed the benchmark last spring with a new cloth made from wool fiber measuring only 11.5 microns. With price tags of up to $50,000, customers repeatedly support this assertion with their checkbook. «We don't just sew our label into an existing suit, - explains Antonio De Matteis, Kiton CEO  -  We create the suit from the bottom up. Only then can it meet our expectations» 
Via Monte Napoleone, Milan




film :.
KITON
Made to Measure Jacket Trunk Show

by Tom Dixon



brought to you by Harrods



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film credits:
KITON. Made to Measure Jacket Trunk Show
director: Tom Dixon
starring: Kiton's Made To Measure Jackets
screenplay: Hanna Mayer
music: Robin Stine
film running time: 00:04:17

KITON, LESS IS MORE
11.5 micron. Kiton surpassed the benchmark last spring with a new cloth made from wool fiber measuring only 11.5 microns. With price tags of up to $50,000, customers repeatedly support this assertion with their checkbook.  «We don't just sew our label into an existing suit, - explains Antonio De Matteis, Kiton CEO  -  We create the suit from the bottom up. Only then can it meet our expectations»



CiroPaone, creator of the luxury dressing in Naples, is an uncompromising perfectionist to cloth as known as supreme craftsmanship in tailoring is his most concern. A bespoke poet. KITON suit begins with fabric to meet Paone's maxim of "The best of the best + 1". The reason is unquestionable: mediocre cloth reduces the best tailoring to nothing. Founded in 1968 by Ciro Paone, Kiton is the quintessential example of Neapolitan tailoring: less structured than a Brioni, more svelte and body forming than an Armani.
The inspiration comes from the fact that all garments from Kiton are handmade. No two are exactly the same, even those that are “ready-to-wear” rather than made-to-measure and, obviously, bespoke.
 



Moreover, there are three basic components of Kiton’s sartorial elegance that make these clothes really special:
First, the quality of the fabrics. In a fashion realm that marks change in millimeters, fabrics are the lingua franca for telling a new style story each season. Every premium suitmaker differentiates itself by offering proprietary cloths, but Kiton is the only manufacturer that works with fabric mills to develop nearly all of the fiber blends and complex weaves used for its suits. Kiton developed several exclusive and extremely limited fabrics. One of those materials, conceived in the late 1990s, was called 360 because it blended Super 180s wool with Super 180s cashmere. The company offered it only through Neiman Marcus because the quantity was so limited. About the same time, Kiton introduced 14-Micron, a four-ply wool fabric made from 14-micron fiber that continues to be a best seller because it looks and feels like cashmere but, like wool, keeps you warm in winter and cool in summer and resists wrinkles.
In 2001, Kiton was among the first to offer lightweight wool woven from rare merino fiber measuring a mere 13.2 microns, about the same size as vicuña, a fiber from a South American animal that was an endangered species at the time. That cloth was so scarce that Kiton could produce only 45 suits. A year later, the company produced 20 suits from a limited supply of cloth made from sheep’s wool measuring less than 12.8 microns. Kiton  surpassed that benchmark last spring with a new cloth made from wool fiber measuring only 11.5 microns.
These delicate and rare fabrics are extremely difficult to work with and demand the skills of only the most accomplished tailors, which explains why suits made from them can command as much as $50,000.

This feel is further enhanced by the second component: the internal architecture, especially inside the jackets. A very soft canvas chest-liner enables the jacket to move easily and still maintain its elegant design. It’s costly both because it is cut and stitched by hand and because the preparation of the canvas takes time and attention. This style is a distinct departure from Saville Row clothes, which are more rigid.

The third element. Details of a typical Kiton suit: sleeves that are attached to an unusually small, high armhole; the fine irregular stitching around the buttonholes; the high notch on the lapel that no machine can produce; the slight curve on the chest pocket held in place by two sideways, V-shaped “mosquito” stitches; and the way the canvas inner lining is loosely attached to the interior body so the suit does not wrinkle as the cloth compresses. Essentially, hand stitches permit greater movement. This is particularly important around the shoulder and collar, where the arm and neck move against the cloth. Having a little bit of give and stretch along the seams allows the panels of cloth to move more easily. The same is true of the puckering in the cloth at the shoulder seam, where the sleeve enters an armhole that is at least half the width along the top. “Questo è poesia, certo!” (This is poetry, for certain!) he declared.



 
Kiton launched its 2011 collection inspired by its recent purchase of the renowned Carlo Barbera wool factory near Milan. With a legacy of over 60 years in fine wool production, the Barbera factory is the originator of “millionaire cashmere,” a lightweight and refined fiber. Kiton has used fabric from the Barbera mill for many years, but the purchase gains the company access to Barbera’s traditional techniques. “We have always made sure to have excellent fabric,” sais CEO Antonio De Matteis. “This purchase will allow us to start to make our own fabrics. Kiton features a suit model called LASA from Barbera’s millionaire cashmere. A characteristic of the LASA model, aside from its linen lining, is that each suit is handled by a single tailor, from fabric selection to completion. Of Kiton’s 350 tailors, only 10 tailors are trained to produce the LASA model. Five hundred LASA suits were made for the season, and all have been sold.

From LASA to K-50. "No other branded suitmaker devotes as much time to a single suit as Kiton does to its K-50 model
" continued Ciro Paone. To illustrate his point, he set aside the 25-hour suit and retrieved from the closet the brand’s first K50 model—so named because it requires 50 hours to produce, twice as much time as a typical Kiton off-the-rack suit. “The K50 is made to order by a single master tailor - said Ciro Paone -  who is so skilled that he does not need to use a pattern; he simply chalks the fabric according to the client’s measurements and begins cutting. Quality needs a lot of attention, a lot of love, and control.” Ciro Paone, bespoke poet.

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