M.J. Bale’s Italian weaving partners are not just considered to be the world’s finest in terms of producing luxury worsted and knitted cloth, but they are also global leaders in textile sustainability. Located across Piedmont and Lombardy, our partners are ISO-accredited for environmental management and renewable energy-powered. Additionally, our wool weavers only source the fibre from growers who adhere to strict non-mulesing practises.
Located in the Piedmontese region of Biella, Vitale Barberis Canonico (VBC) has been family-owned since 1663, making it one of the world’s oldest continuing textile mills. VBC has been M.J. Bale’s single-source wool partner since 2015, creating exquisite worsted cloth entirely from wool grown only at the carbon positive Kingston farm in the Tasmanian northern Midlands. VBC is also the partner of M.J. Bale’s world-first methane-reduced wool trials, weaving over 1 tonne of this pioneering fibre to be created into carbon neutral blazers in our Japanese atelier.
We’ve been been working with a small but expert tailoring atelier in the Iwate Prefecture of Japan since 2010. Known for its culture of artisanal craftsmanship and exceptional hand-finishing skill, the workshop boasts about 70 cutters and tailors that create our Collection and Custom suits. Each garment is the result of over 50 hours of craftsmanship. The jackets alone go through over 200 separate stages of production, including a full-canvas construction and hand-sewn armholes, collars and cross-stitched buttons.
The construction of our Made in Japan suits begins with cutter with Inari-san (below left), who traces with chalk the garment’s measurements on the fabric and then deftly cuts the cloth by hand. From there, hand-finished highlights include the shoulder (reinforced with layers of thin canvas then hand-stitched to provide more flex and comfort), the armholes (initially sewn on machine and pressed together using hot steam, with lining attached by hand), and a full-canvas construction that runs down the length of the body. The jacket collar alone involves 41 different stages.