The tradition

“You’ve put on a décolleté dress…” (Bovio-Lama)

Neapolitan elegance since 1531

The histories of Neapolitan tailors and tailor’s shops have become entwined like textures of cloth throughout the centuries. These histories and talents are at the origin of the “Neapolitan style”, which is still famous all over the world.

The “Confraternita dei Sartori” – the association of tailors – was born in the church of S. Eligio al Mercato in 1351. The Neapolitan elegance took shape when Naples, at the peak of its magnificence, was the capital of the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies, an important socio-economic centre and a fashion landmark just like London and Paris.

Great tailors in the 19th century

In the 19th century, it was thanks to its great tailors that Naples became such a magnificent city. Kings and Heads of States were charmed by its creativity, unparalleled manual skills, opulent shops and refined cloths. The streets of Naples welcomed the European nobility while Neapolitan tailors decorated their home town with new cuts and colors, leading the fashion of the time. The first was De Nicola on via Partenope, a Neapolitan tailor who enjoyed international renown, followed by the master Raffaele Sardonelli, as well as the Caggiula and Rubinacci families.

20th century: the new Neapolitan tailors

Then, in the new century, Neapolitan tailoring keeps on progressing: the 20th century features the great names of Neapolitan tailors such as Marinella, Kiton and Isaia who were capable of turning small craft shops into great fashion houses that became a symbol of made in Naples elegance. Politicians and showmen took the great Neapolitan tailor’s shops and their style as a landmark, while the famous protagonists of so-called dolce vita chose their glamorous clothes at the boutiques of beachwear fashion in Capri, Ischia and Positano.

Neapolitan tailoring has a timeless history. Its style is still up-to-date since it is made up of natural elegance, passion and the sublime handmade skills of great Neapolitan tailors, which are the ingredients of an unparalleled style, the “Neapolitan style”.