Pushing the limits of luxury suit making is critical to the success of Naples, Italy-based Kiton, a company that continuously introduces new tailored-clothing shapes cut from microscopically thin wool, cashmere, vicuna, and other rare fibers. The company’s owner, Ciro Paone, fittingly refers to Kiton’s signature suits as “conforme al corpo,” or second skins, because they are constructed as close to the body as technically possible. Although such a close fit may appear restrictive, the cut is surprisingly more elegant and comfortable than the seemingly roomier designs of other suit makers. Moreover, the hours that the company’s tailors spend on a single garment—often as many as 50—show in the suit’s details, which include hand-stitched buttonholes, boutonniere stays under the lapel, and sleeves attached by hand to give the shoulders their distinctive Neapolitan-style shearing. In a nod to the brand’s heritage, this spring Kiton began testing a new model called Cipa (after founder Ciro Paone) that draws inspiration from a 1960s design found in the company’s archives. The suit has a more structured shoulder than Kiton’s typical soft-shouldered designs and is made from lightweight lamb’s wool, Harris tweed, English worsted wool, and other retro-inspired fabrics.
Owner Ciro Paone’s ancestors were cloth merchants who sold fine fabrics to custom tailors as far back as the late 1800s. Today Kiton is the only clothing manufacturer that works with fabric mills in Italy and England to develop 90 percent of its own exclusive fabrics, including such rare blends as cashmere/linen and cashmere/silk.