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Beyond the Bale : December 2017
For more than 1,000 years, gondolas have been a primary means of transport along the Venetian canals, and the classic blue and white stripes of the gondoliers’ uniform have long been used to dress these iconic Venetian boatmen. After an absence of almost a century, wool is once again being used in the uniforms. The official supplier of the Association of Venetian Gondoliers, Emilio Ceccato (owned by Italian apparel manufacturer and retailer Al Duca D’Aosta), in collaboration with AWI’s subsidiary, The Woolmark Company, have created the new uniform, crafted from Australian Merino wool. The gondoliers’ job is strenuous and undertaken in all weathers, so they will be thankful that their uniforms are now being made from such a performance fibre. Merino wool’s natural, inherent benefits – including thermoregulation and breathability – help ensure maximum comfort and freedom of movement during physical activity. The city’s 443 gondoliers will wear the iconic blue and white stripe Merino wool uniform, comprising a polo shirt made using 100% Merino wool fabric from Italian manufacturer Reda, a jersey made from 100% Merino wool yarn from Italian manufacturer Tollegno, and a quilted vest from Marzotto with 100% Merino wool fabric and wool wadding. The Woolmark logo, owned by Australian woolgrowers, is displayed on the sleeve of all the apparel. The new wool uniform is available to the public to purchase from the three Venice stores of Emilio Ceccato; it is estimated 60,000 tourists visit Venice every day. The iconic gondoliers of Venice are once again wearing wool, thanks to an initiative between AWI and the exclusive supplier of the Association of Venetian Gondoliers, Emilio Ceccato. WOOL RETURNS TO ICONIC VENICE The gondoliers’ apparel is also available to buy online at www.emilioceccato.com (shipping worldwide). “We are proud that after almost a century the gondoliers have rediscovered wool for The Emilio Ceccato store near the Rialto Bridge in Venice that sells the gondoliers’ Merino wool apparel. The apparel is also available online at www.emilioceccato.com Venetian gondolier wearing the 100% Merino wool polo shirt and jersey. their uniforms,” said AWI Global Strategy Advisor Fabrizio Servente. “Their job requires high-level physical performance in extremely variable weather conditions. The return to Merino wool confirms the ability of this natural fibre to respond to their needs; this is why AWI wanted to support this project with the historical brand Emilio Ceccato and Association of Venetian Gondoliers.” Aldo Reato, President of the Association of Venetian Gondoliers, declared: “We are extremely glad for this new partnership with Emilio Ceccato and The Woolmark Company. Wearing wool of high quality, as the gondoliers used to do at the beginning of the 10th Century, adds value and pride to our profession.” CEO of Al Duca D’Aosta, Alberto Bozzo, added: “Loving Venice and its traditions means investing in quality and teaming up with companies who produce and promote the quality of Italian fabrics. Emilio Ceccato’s new collection and the partnership with The Woolmark Company is an example. We are proud to offer to the Association of Venetian Gondoliers garments made with the world’s best fabrics.” MORE INFORMATION www.emilioceccato.com OFF FARM 5