MILAN — Mario Caraceni, a legend of the Milanese tailoring squad, died on Wednesday at age 95.
The mastermind behind the ‘70s success of the A. Caraceni tailoring atelier in central Milan, Caraceni was born in Naples in 1926. He was the son of Augusto Caraceni, member of an Italian household of tailors, who had moved to Paris to arrange his atelier within the Metropolis of Lights.
When World Warfare II broke out, Augusto closed his Paris location and returned to Italy. Opening a boutique on Milan’s By way of Fatebenefratelli, he was joined by his son Mario in 1946. Mario inherited the household enterprise in 1972.
Mario Caraceni spearheaded the atelier’s success between 1972 and 1998, renaming it A. Caraceni as an homage to his late father. He helped outline the quintessentially Milanese suiting fashion, loosening up designs and broadening lapels to comply with the final pattern of Italian clothes towards softer materials, lighter inside building and luxury.
“It’s a part of the Italian character,” Caraceni advised WWD in 2000. “We’re light folks, so it’s solely pure that — whether or not we’re dressed by Neapolitans, Romans or Milanese — ultimately, we’re all carrying smooth fits,” he stated.
Beneath his lead, the A. Caraceni atelier dressed Austrian barons, Italian counts and trade titans, in addition to Milanese millionaires. He was the tailor behind a number of the impeccable fits sported by the late Fiat president Gianni Agnelli, an Italian fashion icon on his personal phrases.
Agnelli’s grandson Lapo Elkann, who inherited a number of fits crafted by Caraceni from his grandfather, stated, “Caraceni’s loss of life is a superb loss for Italian tailoring and elegance. He was and can at all times be a real icon of males’s fashion. I’m notably grateful to him as a result of he allowed me to get pleasure from and rejoice in carrying fits that belonged to my grandad Gianni.”
Upon his retirement in 1998, Caraceni handed the baton to his daughter Rita Maria and son-in-law Carlo Andreacchio, who proceed to helm the corporate, together with their sons Massimiliano and Valentina.
“I stood by his aspect for 40 years and for sure, he was an distinctive man in each means,” Andreacchio advised WWD on Friday. “He had three loves in his life: work, household and religion. He was indefatigable and requested all of us to remain on the atelier till late at evening. He was very strict when it got here to work, he anticipated the perfect from us, and that has helped the atelier thrive all through these years,” he added.
Andreacchio recalled addressing him with the formal “lei” somewhat than the intimate “tu,” otherwise you, for 20 years till one evening throughout a cocktail reception on the Principe di Savoia resort in Milan, Caraceni — clad in a tuxedo and sipping champagne — requested him to start out utilizing the acquainted “tu.”
“We began crying whatever the formal scenario….This anecdote epitomizes the person he was, he needed to ponder issues earlier than letting himself go, however at that time I knew he thought-about me the son he by no means had,” stated Andreacchio, noting that he at all times supported his workers additionally exterior the workspace.
Worldwide vogue designers additionally flocked to Caraceni’s atelier within the Golden Triangle luxurious purchasing vacation spot over time to have their fits crafted from the knowledgeable fingers of the tailor.
These included Karl Lagerfeld, Ralph Lauren and Gianfranco Ferrè — who praised the atelier’s capability to interpret his signature fashion with “beautiful mastery,” in addition to Calvin Klein, who used to ship thanks notes to the atelier for “essentially the most good fits on the planet.”
In 1975, the tailor minimize and stitch the tailcoat worn by Italian poet Eugenio Montale to obtain the Nobel prize, and in 2004, he was bestowed with the “Order of Benefit of the Italian Republic” honor, which acknowledged his painstaking dedication to work and contribution to the nation’s entrepreneurship.
Nino Cerruti, president of the Lanificio Fratelli Cerruti woolen mill, which has equipped the A. Caraceni atelier, praised the tailor’s experience. “The Italy of artisans is usually a land of princes, equivalent to Mario Caraceni: A prince, artist and tailor,” he stated.
A public funeral service can be held at Milan’s Chiesa di Santa Croce on Saturday at 11 a.m.