Southern Italy is wooing Americans, and not just tourists. Apparently the heel of Italy’s boot is an untapped resource for textile and leather manufacturers, who are eager to stamp “Made in Italy” on U.S. designs. At a press conference Tuesday at New York’s Metropolitan Pavilion, a group of representatives from Pit9, an organization of manufacturers from southern Italy’s Salento region, stated their firm’s interest in building an American clientele. And they are intent on doing it Italian style, complete with plenty of sweet talk and a leisurely pace — 30 minutes after the scheduled 5 p.m. start time. Domenico Delli Carpini, director of America Oggi, joked that the conference would begin in “10 Italian minutes.”
Once under way, the panel — Silvio Astore and Caterina Mastrogiovanni of Pit9, Remigio Venuti, mayor of the city of Casarano, Giuseppe Petracca of the Lecce Chamber of Commerce and Delli Carpini — made a case for Salento’s network of small family-run operations that specialize in handmade products, from socks to swimsuits to shoes to textiles. In between emphasizing Italy’s amore for America and how happy he was to be in New York, Venuti explained that Salento is home to hundreds of small factories, many of which have worked with high-profile Italian labels such as Valentino and Moschino, but aren’t equipped to approach the American market independently. Pit9 is working to change that. Mastrogiovanni estimated that over the last six years Pit9 has invested 60 million euros to support the region’s companies and develop their production capacity. “They’re ready to be in the U.S. market,” she said.
Steve Aoki held a presentation, a runway show and outdoor concert for his men's line Dim Mak. Here's a look from his spring 2018 collection, which was titled "Paradise Found." #wwdfashion #wwdmens (📷: George Chinsee)
"It's really hard sometimes. I think I have a reputation for being really tough and aggressive and pushy but I really am a very shy person who wants to be liked, and that's the conflict constantly. There's something that takes hold - I want people to like me, I don't want to be mean - but if I see something that just cries out to be answered, I go for it," says renowned NBC News correspondent Andrea Mitchell. (📷: @axeldupeux)