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MILAN — Patience at home and aggressiveness abroad were the prevailing themes at the 37th edition of the Filo yarn fair held at Milan’s Palazzo Delle Stelline.
“The spinning sector is showing a positive yet careful attitude motivated by the slowdown registered in the first months of 2012, which followed the brilliant performances of 2011,” said Alessandro Ciccioni, president of the industrial union’s young entrepreneurs division of the Biella area during the opening roundtable of the two-day trade show, which ended March 8.
Filo saw the number of exhibitors increase to more than 80 this edition, which showcased yarns for spring-summer 2013.
Due to the economic turmoil in the euro zone, the most optimism is for exports outside the European Union, which posted a 12.3 increase last year, according to Italian fashion and textile consortium SMI Sistema Moda Italia.
“The fact that markets are getting bigger and bigger can be challenging in terms of production, but it also represents a positive aspect for sales at the same time,” said Elio Fiorucci. “For example, China is already a big consumer of Italian products, but its potential is huge because in the next years an increasing number of people will have access to high-end consumer goods.”
Ales Rigamonti, product manager of Iafil, said, “The Italian market is perking up, but is completely focused on exports. Our clients are Italian companies but they all sell their products abroad.”
For spring 2013, the Milan-based company presented colored cotton yarns treated with polyurethane to allow a wide range of tones, from powdery shades to darker, deep hues. Iafil also mixed a high percentage of cotton with cashmere to obtain soft blends with lower prices.
“The knitwear component is growing and it’s supporting our business very well,” Rigamonti added. “Conversely, the weaving sector is struggling and even if the Biellese zone is holding on, the Pratese mills are still trying to reorganize their business after the crisis of 2009.”
Iacopo Bruni, export manager at Tuscany-based Ilaria Manifatture Lane, highlighted the difficulties of the market in the first months of 2012.
“Now it’s going better, but we registered a slow start to the year due to the bad performances of knitwear, which represents 30 percent of our business,” he said. “This is linked with this winter’s unusual warm weather, which caused a slowdown in sales.”
Federico Buratti, managing director of Biella-based Filati Buratti, said, “We don’t see the same optimistic mood as last season, but we are confident about the results of the summer sales campaign,” adding that the company is reporting growing exports to Asia, including China, South Korea and Japan.
For summer, Filati Buratti introduced 10 new silk blends with mélange and washed effects, along with yarns mixing silk with wool or cotton with natural fibers.
Botto Poala focused on a “cocktail party” look, adding some Lurex to cashmere and silk yarns for women and combining wool with polyester for a glitter effect for men’s tuxedos.
In addition, a tailoring, Savile Row-inspired mood was evident on mercerized wool Superflorence and Naples yarns.
“The color palette is wide, with ultralight shades of gray for women and deep blues for men,” said Botto Poala development manager Nicoletta Meriglio. “We have also explored woodsy tones for a look inspired by British country gentlemen.”