In 1959 Kruschev took one of his shoes off at the United Nations in New York and slammed it on the table. That shoe was part of a range of accessories and garments that Angelo Litrico had expressly created and produced for the leader of the Soviet Union. We can easily affirm that the Italian Haute Couture designer left his footprint in the international history.
Angelo Litrico was born in Catania, Sicily, in 1927, first of 12 children of a simple family. Financial necessities led him to leave his studies, so he started to work as an assistant in a tailoring atelier in the Sicilian city. Between threading needles and ironing cloths, his passion for fashion began to take shape.
His enthusiasm for this kind of job brought the young Italian talent to move from his native town to Rome, looking for better opportunities to make his desires come true. He found it in a small workshop in Via Sicilia (what a twist of fate!), near the legendary Via Veneto. There he started to create and wear high quality suits and he began to catch the attention of the public. One evening going to the Opera, Angelo was wearing a silk tuxedo, noticed by the Italian actor Rossano Brazzi, who soon became his first famous customer.
Many others followed, and Litrico’s name began to be very known among a selected clientele, representing the Italian tailor-made Haute Couture. This allowed him to buy the small workshop where he had been formed, which he would never abandon as to remind himself of where it all started.
In the Fifties the big Italian fashion houses had already begun to show female garments on fashion shows. Men’s debut on the catwalk was organized by the young and revolutionary Angelo Litrico. In 1957, Italian fashion was discussed in Russia and the Italian designer was asked to take part. Just for that occasion, Angelo thought of taking a coat to Kruschev as a gift. He didn’t know the Party Secretary’s measurements, so he used a newspaper photograph as model. The result was a wonderful suit that brought Litrico not only Kruscev personal thanks, but in addiction to it an expensive camera as a gift and his exact measurements. They revealed themselves useful when, after a few months, the Russian leader asked Litrico for a complete wardrobe, which included… the famous shoes!
The news that Litrico had dressed Kruschev reached the U.S just as the Italian fashion designer was there for a fashion show. Soon he was surrounded by journalists and hundreds of newspapers and magazines spoke about him, in 37 different languages. The colors of Italian Haute Couture had crossed the ocean. By the Sixties, Litrico’s name could already be found in the whole Europe, as well as in South America, Japan or South Africa.
Among Angelo’s customers were actors such as Richard Burton, John Houston or the Italian Vittorio Gassman, heads of state including Tito, Peron, Nasser, King Hussein, Eisenhower, Mac Millan or Nixon. His hard work that had helped Italian fashion industry to spread all over the world, especially for what concern men’s Haute Couture, has been recognized by the Italian authorities with various accolades.
Litrico died prematurely in 1986 but his name lives on through the work of his younger brother Franco and sister Giusi, who had been assisting him throughout his entire career. Never forgetting his founder philosophy – that allowed him to anticipate his customers’ tastes studying them, their strength as well as their weakness – the Italian High Fashion brand goes on success after success.
The company, now run by Angelo’s nephews Luca and Fabio, bears the name of Franco Litrico, which has become now a symbol of Italian tailor-made Haute Couture all over the world. The two young designers are keeping the tradition going, adapting Litrico’s concept and style to the modern society. The customers of the Litrico’s label are in search of the details which make the difference and the unmistakable quality of Italian tailoring associated with the Anglo-Saxon prestigious fabrics, and can find them all in the Litrico’s suits and dresses, as well as accessories.
Next to the High Fashion collection, with a very selected clientele and a production of 200 unique models every year, Franco Litrico includes also a ready-to-wear collection. But the intentions of the brand, as Luca Litrico declared, are of not opening too much to the public. Selected customers and just to flagship store in Rome and Tokyo are the key of Litrico’s philosophy and great success.
Maison LitricoColle Pietra Ficcata, 96
00039 Zagarolo (RM), Italy
Tel: [+39] 06 6992-1472
Fax: [+39] 06 6978-8223
Contact: Luca Litrico