Hailed by the Financial Times as this generation's most inventive image-maker", this
Puglia-born tailor is known for his opulent fabrics, Polso Orologio and signature "watch-cuff" shirts. Sir Michael Caine, David Beckham, Tony Blair and Sir Paul McCartney are among the brands celebrity patrons: Legatto Lifestyle sits with Angelo Galasso to discuss past, present and future of menswear.
L: Who is Angelo Galasso? Tell us about your journey into the fashion industry.
Angelo Galasso succeeded in transforming a game for boys into a job of the adults.
When you do something pursuing passion and pleasure, this can then become a proper job.
It is often said that a game for boy turns into a job of the adults. For me everything started as a game, indeed. I started a bit as an outsider and I wanted to buck the trend, I wanted to go against the formalities typical of an urban centre as small as my hometown (Villa Franca Fontana) was. My father was the chief policeman, a role that at that time was highly appreciated by the community, so as you can imagine, I had the constant feel of being in the spotlight.
I did not go to the church while everyone else did. When there was the trend of the low waist trousers, I would design a model with the high waist when there was the trend of the cigarette
trousers, I would design a bell-bottoms model. Angelo Galasso style found its inspiration from that, and since the beginning it has always been a bit out of the ordinary. A brand that is always in juxtaposition and that always goes countertrend. Like a sort of criticism to the ordinary and the classical, which are less and less appealing. It is exactly when people get fed up with something that they are subconsciously getting ready for a change.
H. Can you give us an insight into the world of Angelo Galasso... What is it that makes you tick? And where do you find your inspiration for the new collections?
My inspiration comes from the self, from the opposition to the rules and to the general judgment. The small village seems to arrange for everything and set you on the path to perfection, as to prevent you from any criticism; but this is only a trick. Well, being this situation, you may as
well buck the trend and do what you really like in your life, without wasting your time worrying about what others may think about you. The street is where I find the inspiration for my new collections.
I remember the early afternoons in the small centre where I used to live people used to take a stroll down the main street and we used to sit and watch them coming and going. noticing every single detail of their clothes. It was during those afternoons that the idea of designing garments that I thought people may have liked, but they were just too afraid to dare and therefore to be criticized. Within everyone there is a big desire of change and we all want to appear and stand out of the crowd; yet at times it is like if we were hold back for fear of infringing the rules.
I walk down the streets, I go to the parties and I find my inspiration there. I see a thing and I immediately start to think about what I could do to make that thing unique, different from all the other things. Every time you succeed in creating something unique you know that is the result of a perfect mix between the classic and the innovation. A classic background interpreted with an
international and innovative taste. And people love it. Only a little fantasy is left to the new generations for them it is so easy to get access to everything they want, so I think they have lost a bit of sense of desire. That is why when they see something original, they are so longing of it.
How would you sum up the Angelo Galasso brand in one sentence?
If I was to describe the Brand in one sentence, I would definitely say "Tradition in Evolution".
What have been some highlights of the last two decades for both yourself and the brand?
In 1990, when I presented my watch cuff to Mr. Gianni Agnelli (the former Fiat president) and gifted him a shirt. Another epic moment for me was when I first met with my friend Al Pacino.
What is your outlook on the future of menswear? Do you think casual-formal will play a big role in the years to come?
As I said before, I think we are all fed up with the classic. My shirt, for example, is something different and absolutely particular. It has a high neck, which allows you to be impeccable either in a casual or in a formal situation. With my shirt, you can be amazingly stylish, even without a tie!
As a brand what are some of the international markets that are most important to you now?
Our product being so new and different already appeals to an international market. Our clients come from all over the World. For example in our Milan Store, we have a lot of Chinese clients.
Being a frequent traveller, what city do you enjoy visiting and what is it about this city that captivates you?
It may sound funny, but London, where I live with my family is my favourite city Unfortunately I don't go explore it so often. I would like to have more time to walk around, explore and discover all London's treasures. It really is a city where you can discover something new every single day.
How do you keep on top of your daily routine?
I think that the only way to keep on top of all my appointments is by doing a scale of priority, without forgetting anything. For sure, having a prepared and reliable staff is a great help. Similarly important is the ability to delegate. This is the most complicated yet important thing of all In this way you can assign roles, functions and duties.
When you're out of the office, how often do you spend your leisure time?
I spend all my leisure time with my family: my wife and my children.
Can we expect to see any exciting collaborations/developments from Angelo Galasso in 2016 and beyond?
Yes, sure! We have a lot of working progress and I am really excited for them. For example, at the moment we are working on a new collaboration with Aston Martin, at our NYC store at The Plaza Hotel, for the presentation of the DB1.