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‘If Salvatore was here today, he’d make wearing a mask dapper. He just had this inherent style,” says grandson Sam Borg, who today is COO of the company.
“He’d regale stories of his travels when I was a child and I so wanted to grow up to be just like him. Confidence, he said, was key to success, even if you weren’t quite sure of what you were doing, oozing confidence made the difference to those surrounding you.
“But how do I get confidence, I asked, and he looked at me, stood up, opened his jacket and said, “with a well-cut suit, hanini.”
Early pictures of us as a family, show me, in a suit, with waistcoat, always with a waistcoat, even with jeans and even when I wore short trousers, I’d have worn one playing rugby if I could.
This tip of being well dressed is something that drove my folks mad, even though we are a ‘fashion’ family-businesses, by the age of 14, I was already a connoisseur and wanted to spend hours in department stores looking at cuts and colours and fabrics. Style within movies and books have a big impact on my life and when I saw “The Talented Mr Ripley” it struck a chord and although a little dark, the style throughout the film, and Italy as the backdrop, cemented my view that confidence in your appearance is key.
Today, I still don a waistcoat or gilet most days and in fact these have been incorporated into the Gagliardi range. Like my grandfather, influences have been gathered from travels, from collaboration with the team and from trends we align our collections to.
A waistcoat does not need to match your jacket, having it co-ordinate and in a different pattern / colour way, actually gives you presence and makes you memorable. It also enables you to add accessories like cufflinks and scarves in a colour you may not want to wear a whole suit in.
We buy the majority of our suiting fabric in Italy and this means our family business is supporting other family businesses and hoping to make an impact on your life too.