Brand history: Pal Zileri, classical tailoring and contemporary style Featured

Total look menswear from bespoke suits to the latest trends
by 31 March 2010

“A classic never really finishes saying what it has to say”. This quotation by writer Italo Calvino could be an ideal description of Pal Zileri, a company based on tradition but that reaches into the present. The consistent stylistic perfection of Pal Zileri products is based on impeccable quality and workmanship, reinforced by attentive service. Dedicated to timeless elegance, the brand selects certain modern ideas and incorporates them into its products, which become sophisticated garments suitable for any occasion.

For Pal Zileri, quality means not taking short cuts. Making a classic suit takes about 180 operations and over 6 hours work. For each collection, about a thousand different fabric patterns are used, sourced from the highest quality wool textile manufacturers exclusively for the brand. However, the best guarantee of quality lies in the staff’s mens suit tailor crafts skills, which is based on the remarkable heritage of expertise in the hands of the 850 employees working in the two factories, along with another 300 external staff. The company has consistently invested in its workforce, taking care of housing, transport, and practical solutions such as crèche facilities for working mothers.

Today, the company based in Quinto Vicentino (north-east Italy) distributes its products in over 70 countries, and it has developed a consolidated reputation as a luxury menswear marque. Its business vision reflects the same integrity of the company’s hand-tailoring origins. Today, the numbers that describe its production are very impressive: 230,000 jackets, formal and informal, per year; 250,000 pairs of trousers, 35,000 waistcoats, 220,000 shirts, 160,000 knitwear garments, 100,000 outerwear garments, and 250,000 accessories items (shoes, ties, scarves, belts etc.). Above all, the Group’s business model is superbly structured, with several well-coordinated labels, and an efficient distribution network of own-brand, flagship and multi-brand boutiques that reinforce the brand image. Pal Zileri is advanced and innovative in its communications work, utilizing a well-orchestrated mix of traditional and new media.

History

The company’s history began in 1970, when Forall Confezioni was founded as part of a project engineered by a group of business people who already had considerable experience in the clothing sector. In the 1980s, the partners decided to upgrade their identity and market positioning, and created the Pal Zileri brand. Turnover reached 67 million Euro per year, of which 19 million was made up of business from outside Italy.

Throughout the 1990s and into the new millennium, Pal Zileri progressively expanded its international presence, attaining a consolidated turnover of 110 million euro of which over half was represented by foreign trade. Its product range was also extended, so that today, as well as its classic tailor-made suits, there are now the label Pal Zileri Concept for the leisure time, and the younger brand Lab, launched in Spring-Summer 2005, which have been expanded into total look ranges by means of coordinated accessories including shoes, belts, pens, suitcases, watches and perfumes. This diversification has enabled the company to reach a turnover of over 130 million euro in 2009.

Lines

Gruppo Forall’s most important brand is Pal Zileri, sophisticated menswear, suits, jackets and overcoats. The label Pal Zileri Concept range is for men’s leisure wear, with original detailing as well as distinctive designer cuts and consistently high quality. Bomber jackets, pea jackets, trousers, shirts, sweaters and accessories are all perfectly coordinated as regards texture and colour.

Pal Zileri’s luxury range is named Sartoriale, in which the most exclusive textiles – cashmere, guanaco, vicuna, pure Super 200’S wool – are meticulously tailored to create unmistakably impressive garments.

Pal Zileri Abito Privato is a service tailor-made for customers for whom bespoke menswear is an important part of lifestyle. It is much more than just a made-to-measure service. Each Abito Privato garment is designed to measure, with a creative process that focuses on the customer and wearer. Only the finest materials are used, such as wools made in Italy, England and Scotland, with a choice of colours ranging from glamour to discreet good taste.

The selection of textiles available is renewed every season. The tailors take no short cuts. Bespoke custom suits begin with meticulous tailor measurement operations and have hand-stitched open cuffs with four real buttonholes with reinforcing stitching. Linings are in Bemberg twill. The right-hand pocket is specially sized for airline tickets, and has a fastening flap in fabric. The label is personalized with the customer’s name. All this – and much more – means that each Abito Privato garment requires 12 working days to make. Dedicated teams at the company work in close cooperation with retailers, who are kept up-to-date on procedures and wearability. Therefore a garment can be ordered at any Pal Zileri store worldwide.

Lab is a range of casual menswear, for high-level consumers of good, youthful taste; men who are conscious of their own style and select garments and accessories personally. The variety of materials, colours and models in the Lab range offers a highly dynamic total look, permitting great originality.

For each of the Pal Zileri brands, there is a range of glasses, watches and bags, as well as perfumes.

Boutiques and flagship stores

Pal Zileri’s distribution network is designed to reinforce the consumer experience. Flagship stores, as well as an extensive network of multi-brand outlets, feature minimalist interiors designed to enhance the garments to the full. The furnishings feature discreet lighting, surfaces in glass and Plexiglas, and neutral colours, generating a total look for stores that are pivotal in increasing sales revenue as well as reinforcing corporate identity.

Pal Zileri has flagships, directly owned or directly managed stores in Milan, Venice, Vicenza, Bolzano, Taormina, Hamburg, London (four stores), Paris, Hasselt, Las Vegas, Mexico City and Tokyo. It has 36 owned shops, 210 franchises and 1.300 multibrand shops worldwide.

Pal Zileri, then, is a marque that has succeeded in giving its business structure the same superbly-tailored organization that it applies to its garments. Its discreet, classic, contemporary style hallmarks all aspects of the Pal Zileri world.

Click here for a list of Pal Zileri flagship and own-brand stores
Click here to read more about the Abito Privato service