KA/NOA: SLOW FASHION MADE 100 PER CENT IN ITALY
TEXT: MARILENA STRACKE
The Italian/Swiss men’s fashion brand KA/NOA merges slow fashion with timeless, elegant style. At the heart of the brand is founder Bruno Grande, whose never-ceasing passion for sustainability, design and Italian craftsmanship has made KA/NOA what it is today.
It all started with a dream with roots in Bruno Grande’s childhood. Watching his father, a passionate tailor, make the clothes for him and his siblings, spending time in the atelier and feeling the precious materials – all of that was the foundation of Grande’s dream. As he got older, he became a frequent traveller. He kept thinking about how handy it would be if he could simply pack his hand luggage in five minutes with high-quality, elegant yet comfortable clothes.
“As an Italian, I am very much attached to my Piedmont roots, a fervent defender of Italian craftsmanship and ‘savoir-faire’,” Grande says with a smile. “One day, I said to my wife: it’s now or never. That’s how it started. First with a personal small wardrobe in August 2016. Then, one year later, with the first KA/NOA boutique in Lausanne.”
KA/NOA is named after Grande’s two children Kaia and Noah, an ongoing inspiration and tribute to his origins and late father’s passion. But it’s also a reminder of why sustainability needs to be taken seriously – not just for our own sake but for future generations.
“KA/NOA is my small contribution to a better and more responsible world,” Grande adds. “A world where people would buy less but buy better, and where slow fashion would be the norm. KA/NOA is more than a brand, it is a philosophy, and my way to raise my children with values and respect for the things well-done, for hard work and for people.”
Made 100 per cent in Italy, from the yarn to the label
We may have seen the ‘Made in Italy’ label many times before, but often this also includes multiple parts carried out elsewhere. KA/NOA is very different, in that respect. Here, everything from development, manufacturing and materials, to accessories and design elements is genuinely and proudly made 100 per cent in Italy by Grande and his partners.
The result is exceptional quality throughout. It may come at a price, but one that can be easily justified. High quality made by humans for humans has arguably become quite rare these days. “It is a project to protect Italian craftsmanship, where people pay the right price and know where the clothes come from and who makes them,” Grande says.
Hence, there are no sales at KA/NOA – a bold move, but one that shows the founder’s commitment to his own values. This is Slow Fashion at its finest.
Mix and match to your heart’s desire
One of the goals of KA/NOA is the creation of a wardrobe made of elegant, comfortable clothes that fits into hand luggage and can be easily combined with one another. Just a few well-chosen items of clothing, adaptable to every situation – from a three-day business trip to a romantic get-away.
KA/NOA delivers on its promise beautifully. It incorporates the principle of a wardrobe built from basics, yet with every item looking superb in combination with another. This effortless ‘mixing and matching’ ensures that whatever items you grab, you are always impeccably dressed – thanks to just a few select pieces. It is a dream come true for frequent travellers: you don’t have to think much about what to pack.
A philosophy that brings people together
For Grande, the relationships with his customers and collaborators are absolute paramount. “The most fascinating aspect of my work is being with our customers, our partners and everyone close to the brand,” he explains. “We all share the same values, the same philosophy, and we feel somewhat connected. We could not achieve what we have achieved without the support of all those involved, and we enjoy every single day of it.”
KA/NOA offers a new perspective on fashion consumerism and presents a much-needed alternative, where quality prevails over quantity. You can visit the boutiques in Geneva, Zurich, Lausanne, Crans Montana, Verbier or Toulouse, or find your new favourite wardrobe online.
Become part of the KA/NOA family.
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