Founded in 1663, Vitale Barberis Canonico is the family-run Italian mill that’s world-renowned for its pure wool flannel and mohair-blend cloths. Based in the Italian province of Biella, 13 generations of the Barberis Canonico family have washed, spun, dyed and hand-finished the world’s best raw materials into its much-celebrated fabrics.
With over three centuries honing its technical ability, Barberis is able to reinterpret its vast archive of fabrics with subtle adjustments in weight, handle and design to match modern trends and tastes – and, as a result, has the world’s leading menswear designers lining up to use its signature cloths in their collections.
Its most famous output is its flannel wool cloth. Robust and insulating, flannel has natural drape and warmth as well as a wonderfully soft brushed finish. In Barberis’ hands, it’s made from super 120s wool and is complemented in suiting with a softer shoulder construction typical of more laidback Italian style.
Also of high regard is Barberis’ mohair-blend cloth. Sheared from the Angora goat, mohair is revered for its smooth surface and fine handle. Used by Barberis, it elevates a wool-blend suit into something quietly special with its natural crease resistance, lightweight insulation and a beautiful lustre and sheen.
Every Barberis suit comes in traditional half-canvas construction across the shoulder and lapel that enhances the cloth’s drape and allows it to mould to your frame over time. Waistcoats also nod to heritage style with elegant lapels that look refined layered under a suit jacket.
Other hallmarks of a Barberis suit are its finely crafted finishings – Italian style might be intended to look effortless, but closer inspection reveals precise care in the details. Look out for horn buttons, contrast undercollars and fine pick stitching.