When it comes to naming the best shirting fabrics in the world, connoisseurs of men’s fashion and those who know high quality shirts will automatically think in terms of Italian and English manufacturers, and for good reason.* At Philippe Perzi Vienna, we use only the finest fabrics to make our signature shirts and for quality, vibrancy and luminosity, you will not find better fabric than that produced by Thomas Mason, owned by the Bergamo-based Albini Group. Think English tradition combined with Italian flair – a marriage made in heaven!
We’ve previously blogged about the importance of using Egyptian cotton for high quality shirts and in fact, Philippe Perzi Vienna uses only the best of the best Egyptian cotton, Giza 45. It is true that the makings of high quality shirts begins with high quality cotton, but Egyptian cotton alone is not enough…
The choice of fabric mill is paramount to producing high quality shirts and many cheaper shirt manufacturers will use sub-standard cotton and/or use a fabric mill located India, Pakistan or China, where quality control and indeed the working conditions of the personnel are questionable at best.
So what makes a fabric mill like The Albini Group cream of the crop? We list some factors below:
1. High quality shirts start with high quality talent
The Albini group has a deep bench of product researchers, stylists and creative minds who are constantly able to create fabrics where the harmony of graphics and colours are enhanced by the right choice of structure or weave. In addition, the Albini family has an active presence in the direction of the company and is truly passionate about the fabric they produce and the high quality shirts they contribute to making. This extends to the raw materials used i.e. Egypitan cotton; They have a link with the land, with its knowledge, cultures and manual labour sent down through the generations.
2. Research and Development is integral in the manufacture of high quality shirts
High quality shirts are differentiated by durability, softness and an intensity of colour that will prove resistant to fading, even after repeated laundering. In order to maintain this gold standard, The Albini Group are continually coming up with new and innovative ways to use yarns, dyes, weaves and finishing processes. In order to improve the quality of fabrics, the Albini Group has a strategy of vertical integration, that starts with the control of cotton fields in Egypt, through a Made in Italy spinning, with the aim to obtain precious and thin yarns. It’s the research and development into perfecting these processes that make the Thomas Mason collection from The Albini Group unique in it’s class.
3. An extensive and harmonious range of colour and graphics
The Albini Group’s extensive range of fabrics is second to none. Whether its plains, stripes, checks or prints, each season we are astounded at the choice we are presented with and that’s why our collection of shirts is so large. It’s very hard to choose! The Albini Group have a certain style that differentiates them from other fabric mills; the collection from Thomas Mason for example, never fails to impress us with the harmony of graphics and colours that goes to the heart of Italianism.
4. Hi-tech = high quality shirts
Cutting-edge technology and experienced and highly skilled personnel are key features of a good fabric mill and essential to producing high quality shirts. The Albini Group has many cloth inspectors and technicians who are carefully trained and meticulous in their attention to detail. In addition, they have cutting edge technology and laboratories to ensure every metre of fabric is perfect. You can read more about quality control on the Albini website. For many years, craftsmanship and attention to detail coupled with mastery of the complexities of the industrial production process have catapulted the Albini Group into the top ranks of fabric manufacturers in the world.
5. A Heritage dating back to the 18th Century
We love that to this day, the history of English textile doyen Thomas Mason has been respected and that frequently, the creative minds at Albini are able to draw inspiration from as early as 1845, since they still have Thomas Mason fabric swatches in their archives from 150 years ago! It is the long history of quality, exclusivity and sophistication associated with the brand that makes it the fabric mill of choice for Philippe Perzi Vienna’s high quality shirts.
6. Respect for the Environment and it’s stakeholders
Unlike many other sub-standard fabric mills, where costs are kept to a minimum, no matter what penalty the environment pays, The Albini Group ensures that respect for the environment is the guideline for every action the group takes. Their systems and production methods are constantly improved in order to continuously reduce the environmental impact. Additionally, the quality of life of those who work so diligently within The Albini Group are at the forefront of their thinking – ensuring a happy employee produces high quality fabrics and hence, high quality shirts.