I have seen many coin purses in my life. Many of them made by very experienced and skilled artisans. Then I saw the FERRO and understood what could be accomplished when you set out to make the best possible coin purse.
After years of wondering whether our customers would pay more to get the best coin purse in the world, we finally decided to show you what we think is the best coin purse in the world and let you decide if it is for you. You should first read about who Peroni is.
I think that the first goal was: “it has to work perfectly, every time.” I put all my change in the FERRO to test it, I closed it, and right there I was sold: this coin purse is designed to stay closed with ease! Next, “is it easy to open?” Yes, easy enough with the pull tab and the amount of force required is the same every time. Next, “do the coins come out of the purse and gather in the cover?” Definitely yes. Even though I had a lot of coins they all gathered in the cover and did not fall out. The coin purse hard edges give me the feeling that it will always operate like this and I can rely on it.
As I was testing the FERRO I could not help but notice how smooth and pleasant the leather was. I am a fan of vacchetta leather, which is very genuine and somewhat raw, but to accomplish this kind of precision in a product you need leather that is smooth and precise. You too will be able to smell and feel the unmistakable artistry of Florentine leather craftsmanship. Quality leather and Italian craftsmanship can be found in other products. What makes the FERRO coin purse stand out is its design. Using a single piece of leather and 37 production steps, the FERRO does not use any stitching.
So pick one up. I doubt that you will see anything else quite like it.
Lately, one bag has been catching my attention as I walk into the office every day: the PIOGGIA by Caterina Lucchi. The thought that comes to mind is: “I’ve never seen anything quite like it before.”
An Original Style?
Granted, I’m not a user of ladies handbags. But I do live and breathe Campomaggi and Caterina Lucchi handbags on a daily basis and Emi loves to wear them every day. Perhaps other designers have explored this exact style before and I am late to the party: even if that were the case, I would not be surprised if Caterina Lucchi’s version is quite original. Besides all these possibilities, I was impressed with the design and I continue to be. The braids are one-of-a-kind and very appealing to sight and touch.
The Artisanship is very remarkable, in my opinion, because it is not so easy to produce those braids, especially using buffalo (instead of cow) leather. When I pick it up and inspect it, the bag looks really well made.
The braids are the result of an intricate pattern of stitches that does not exactly look simple to accomplish, a testament to the skill of the artisans and to the creativity of the designer who came up with a doable way to accomplish it.
Caterina Lucchi uses buffalo leather from time to time. Italy has a growing population of buffaloes that arrived during the sixth century from central Europe and is concentrated around Naples (these are the buffaloes who produce the milk for mozzarella and scamorza affumicata). Italian buffalo leather is thicker, more solid, and more durable than our beloved vacchetta leather. For this reason it is a bit more complicated to work, but it yields a long lasting product. Caterina’s buffalo leather is still soft to the touch but does feel thicker and, consequently, stiffer than her calfskin products.
A Mature, Independent Personality
Caterina Lucchi is a wonderful woman. Her personality is very strong and loving. Like Emi and I, she can be around her husband a lot and get along. She can also go her own way with her brand, which is very innovative, unique, and vibrant. I know Emi loves her products, and apparently so does my little Chiara who is seven. She spent a week at the office last week when school was closed and she said she liked the PIOGGIA… Perhaps it is a sign that we are going to bump heads when she’s a teenager, but for now she still laughs at all of my jokes.
Recently I got a request to compare Campomaggi Backpacks to figure out how they rest on your back to see which ones are most comfortable. My customer said that she is a bit short and would not be comfortable with a backpack that sits very low. Having always carried a different Campomaggi backpack on our overseas trips I definitely have some first-hand experience on the subject. In addition, many of our customers have shared their experiences with their Campomaggi backpacks. So, let’s try to spot the most comfortable ones.
There are a few different major uses for backpacks today: shopping, commuting, traveling, and hiking. Shopping is different from commuting in that, when commuting, you might need to get in and out of the bag frequently. When shopping, you might benefit from more space and you do not know how much stuff you will want to carry. The main difference between traveling and hiking is that when you are hiking you don’t get to set the backpack down a lot and if it starts to get heavy then it is definitely going to be an unavoidable pain. When you travel, instead, the backpack might end up sitting on a luggage rack inside a train car for considerable stretches.
The most common concerns about backpacks are: weight and comfort, space, and ease of access to contents. Campomaggi backpacks meet the needs for different uses and different concerns. When it comes to weight, canvas backpacks are lighter. But comfort is determined more by the type of strap than the weight of the bag, which ultimately depends on what you put in the bag. The more spacious backpacks are at greater risk of becoming heavier for this reason. Also, a spacious backpack with a single compartment can make it quite difficult to find what you are looking for.
To keep things simple I picked three Campomaggi backpacks to compare: The ZAVATTI, queen of all backpacks; the VOLTA, darling among Marcopolonites; and the FONTANA, full of tricks up its sleeve.
First I need to define what a comfortable backpack is for a couple of different uses and body peculiarities. If you plan on using the backpack for travelling you want to pay particular attention to bag weight and strap comfort. I would definitely pick a canvas backpack that is spacious.
From the attached pictures you can see that the VOLTA is the bag that sits comfortably on the shoulders and rests high. The other backpacks sit low and there is no way to shorten the straps past their tightest setting. The VOLTA is very adjustable and you get to make the straps as short as you need them. I really like it also because the straps are very comfortable (wider at the top), it is easy to put on and take off, it has a lot of pockets outside, and the top is high grade canvas which is lighter than leather. I would rate the VOLTA as the most comfortable for hiking and traveling.
The ZAVATTI is the most stylish, still, after all these years. It is very popular for commuting to work, where it looks professional and researched: there is no other backpack quite as high quality when you take a close look. The two large pockets are ideal for storing today’s large phones and other somewhat large items like an eyeglasses case.
The FONTANA is also in the stylish category that would do well when commuting. It is a different style than the ZAVATTI and appeals to a different taste that appreciates certain design features such as the braided straps. It feels more spacious than the ZAVATTI and it would be my pick for shopping out of these three, although there are other Campomaggi backpacks that I am not going to review today that would do better in that arena.
Ultimately, my customer liked the design of the ZAVATTI only so I had to discourage her because it was going to sit too low on her. My recommendation for comfort would have been the VOLTA, which did not cut it for her. This is a good example of the advice you can get from Marcopoloni. Instead of being sold a product you will find someone whose first priority is to listen to you to try to understand your needs. When I showed her the pictures she was able to make an informed decision.
Do you have a Campomaggi backpack? Please share your experience in the comments to help other customers. I plan on reviewing the other backpacks that we currently carry next time Chiara comes to the office on a school holiday. She took the pictures for this post. Good job Chiara!
Fall is always super busy for us because we make sure to stock up for the Holiday season and try to have lots of new products to introduce. Add to that that we try to add the Fall/Winter collections during fall, not the beginning of summer, and you can imagine that we have a great number of products to introduce. In the past we noticed that when too many products arrive at the same time we do not have the resources and creativity to properly present each product. That has caused many worthy products to go nearly unnoticed for a while until customers started to dig them out of our catalog.
To prevent that we are now spreading out the arrival of new products by Campomaggi across multiple shipments. This week we received one such shipment and it was very exciting because the bags and accessories that we picked for this winter are really beautiful.
One new design is the distressed leather with a grid pattern of small multicolored brass studs. The TOALDO Campomaggi bag is a great example of this. Another is the VERATTI: a spacious bag with a myriad of small pockets in front and strong magnets securing the closure flaps.
Another line is represented by the FERRARI: canvas bags with large leather components such as a full front flap.
Some products become part of our DNA. I have been wearing my Nicola on my belt every day since July 2, 2014, and I am becoming more and more attached to it as time goes by.
There was one unfortunate day a few months ago when I decided not to wear it. That was the day I dropped my Samsung Note 3 in the toilet.
I will spare you the details, but it was because I didn’t have my Nicola with me, and that was extremely upsetting. Since that day I have doubled-down on my loyalty towards this belt pouch. So much so that it has become an extension of me–it is part of my morning routine and now always works hard to keep my wallet always safe and my phone always handy.
Although I consider it a necessity, I have gotten compliments for its style, and, thinking about it, I wouldn’t wear a belt pouch if it wasn’t as stylish. Instead, both men and women stop me to compliment me about it. As to its practicality, I have already discussed it in my previous post, so I will only add that, once you get used to it, you no longer run into things with it.
Needless to say, I highly recommend the NICOLA. Make sure to connect with us and sign up for our newsletter (the most I’ve sent is 5 in a year, although my goal is to send 6).
On Friday Chiara’s school was closed so we took Chiara to the office while we shipped orders and took care of just the most pressing issues. Luckily Chiara loves to read and can entertainment herself for a few hours. But she also takes interest in the family business and hopes to design our bags some day.
When she saw our sample butterfly leather hair clip she said that we should take pictures with it to help the business. We were more than happy to comply, except we opted for the model that we actually carry: the rose. As we went outside and she put the hair clip on. I was very impressed when I saw how beautifully the leather rose adorned my daughter’s hair.
Unlike most of our products, this is one I cannot test drive myself (my hair is way too thin and short). So I cannot testify for comfort or practicality, but I can report what I have witnessed. Chiara wore the clip all day long. If it wasn’t comfortable we would have heard about it every five minutes: she never complained. We did have to adjust it a couple of times throughout the day, which is probably to be expected, or it was the result of Chiara not sitting still at all while Emi put it on. As I said, I was very impressed: on someone with long hair (Chiara’s hair is not thick but it hangs past her shoulders) it should look really good.
If you own one of this, I would love to know your thoughts.
Travel. Close your eyes and think of a destination. If you have a Pinterest account your mind is probably full of exotic destinations you would like to explore, some day, maybe soon. Maybe one of those amazing spots is within driving distance and you picture yourself getting ready to get in the car or SUV with your dear ones.
As I write this I am starting to imagine taking a short vacation to Lake Tahoe (about a four-hour drive from Silicon Valley, double that with traffic but I am not allowed to think about that right now) with my family. We are going to meet our friends who also have kids the same age as ours and we are going to have a great time.
I picture myself offloading the bags from the trunk in the chilly air and I see the wheeled, hard shell suitcase that works so well in airports… not so well in the snow. Plus… It’s not my style. Rewind.
Now I see myself reaching for the PARETO, who packed this thing? I have to finally use those muscles, luckily I also have a full GIRAMONDO to balance me out. It’s snowing, but I waterproofed both bags using the best leather cream in the world. I greet my friends, they notice my bags. I refuse their offers to help: maybe they can get some of the small stuff.
I get to our room, begin unpacking, “these bags are great” I think to myself. “Who’s hungry for dinner?” I proclaim as I take out a bottle of my favorite wine and bring it to the kitchen. I have something memorable in mind for dinner, it’s getting dark, the fireplace is crackling, the kids are playing, laughter erupts. I start cooking with my friends and think: “it’s going to be a good night.”
We have always claimed that our leather cream is the best one we have ever tried. This is because it works really well and its qualities are superior: it is non toxic, it is made of all natural ingredients that do not affect the pores in full grain leather, and it really works to protect and waterproof your leather products, especially good quality Campomaggi leather that you do not want to compromise with sprays full of chemicals.
In the video below you can see how to apply the cream (including how it is perfectly safe to get it on your hands if you want), how the leather darkens significantly when you apply the cream, and how the color almost goes back to normal after an hour (it will, eventually, go back to its original shade). Ultimately, we show how pouring water on the untreated part causes the water to be absorbed by the leather, while pouring water on the treated section results in the water simply rolling off the bag.
This is pretty impressive performance that you can expect on your quality leather products. Make sure to get one next time you buy a Marcopoloni leather product. We stand by it 100%. We are planning more Marcopoloni products of this caliber. Stay up-to-date by signing up to our newsletter and don’t worry: we only have time to send up to six newsletters a year.
As a parent, kids shoes drive me a bit crazy. On one hand, you don’t want to spend too much on shoes because you know that your child will quickly outgrow them, but you know that the cheap ones will start unraveling within a week, and doesn’t your child need something decent on her feet?
I have inspected the signs of wear and tear on Chiara’s shoes and for a while become convinced of torturous games going on at the playground. In my case, when Chiara was four she started coming home with sand and pebbles packed at the bottom of her shoes. I started envisioning a bully dragging her across the sandbox. Luckily one Saturday I got to watch her and her friends take their shoes off and fill them with sand.
But another question remained: why are the frontal parts of her shoes all scraped? Except for seeing her dragging her shoe-tops while riding her scooter, I have no idea how it happens. Whatever the dynamic, it is definitely one of her favorite activities, and most shoes give in like cheese through a grater.
In an effort to do better, a year-and-a-half ago we gave Chiara a pair of sneakers and a pair of sandals. I did expect for them to last longer, but I did not expect them to last this long. The sandals are practically new and I will probably hand them down to somebody who is interested. The sneakers are scraped in front but the leather is holding up and I don’t foresee a hole forming.
Giudi has figured out how to deliver stylish product that are in tune with the American consumer. And our American customers are responding.
It had been a long time since last time we had to beg one of our suppliers to anticipate a shipment by a month because we had run out of their products, in particular the Conto, which is literally selling like a hot cake.
We had seen a rising trend at the beginning of the year and had made our best efforts to keep the CONTO in stock. But starting in September, we began selling it far beyond our forecasts. Now we have practically run out but expect to get more by next week thanks to Giudi splitting our order and preparing what was hot first. The first question that comes to mind is: is this success going to continue?
Obviously it is impossible to tell what the future will bring, but the CONTO has “le carte in regola” which means something like “it has its ducks in a row” although, literally translated, it means that it has its paperwork properly filled out–revealing the bureaucratic lifestyle that still dominates Italian work life. First of all it is well designed for the American market where guys prefer a small wallet that can fit in the front pocket. The CONTO does that, even though there are some who feel that it is still too big. You can’t please everyone, but the CONTO obviously pleases the majority. The majority also has lots of credit cards and does not want a coin compartment (which makes things bulge by default.) The CONTO delivers very well on this count. Finally, the leather. Although thinner than Dionigi or Campomaggi wallets, it is still high quality Italian leather and it lasts a long time. Plus thinner leather means a thinner wallet with more card slots.
Finally the price. It currently sell for $56, which is a tight margin for us but we want to try to keep volumes high. The stronger dollar has helped us keep the price down. Let’s hope it continues!
Please let me know what you think about the CONTO. If you want to stay up to date on Marcopoloni developments, please also sign up to our newsletter. We only send out up to six every year.