L’usine Gucci à Casellina : Visite exceptionnelle

Usine Gucci - Casellina - Florence

We had the amazing opportunity to discover the world of Gucci and more specifically the house’s factory, in a small town named Casellina near Florence (Italy), where the coveted leather goods are produced.

Usine Gucci - Casellina - Florence

We start by entering a guarded state-of-the-art building.

Forty years ago Gucci left its historic atelier situated in the heart of Florence to settle in a bigger place able to provide the capacities to assure the brand’s astonishing development.

Usine Gucci - Casellina - Florence

Hundreds of craftsmen are working in the factory, producing 50 000 leather goods each year. We’re feeling incredibly privileged to be there as only a handful of people were given the right to take photographs inside those walls.

Usine Gucci - Casellina - Florence

We’re walking down the building’s hallways along with a guide revealing us little by little the secrets of Gucci.

Usine Gucci - Casellina - Florence

The exotic and inestimable animal skins

Our first stop is taking place behind a locked door: the precious animal skins’ atelier.

Usine Gucci - Casellina - Florence

A true library stores skins, offering an access for designers and craftsmen to multiple yet very rare skins. You’ll only be able to see a brief glimpse of the incredible but confidential selection

Alligator, python, lizard, ostrich, shagreen, the range is wide.

Usine Gucci - Casellina - Florence

This skin above is actually five times larger and is from a giant anaconda. (You know like the from this pretty bad movie starring J.Lo)

Usine Gucci - Casellina - Florence

Those skins, that will be used for bags, small leather goods and shoes, are divided into two categories: the ones coming from breeding animal and the ones from wild species.

Usine Gucci - Casellina - Florence

No matter their origins all the skins are treated very particularly: polishing, dyeing, all steps requiring hours of work

Usine Gucci - Casellina - Florence

The result is stunning, a crocodile skin can, after being revisited, take the form of a fabric like neoprene, reminding it us the delicate touch of a wetsuit.

Usine Gucci - Casellina - Florence

The warehouse has an abundance of different fabrics, rough, soft, rigid, natural, colorful, thick or thin…

Usine Gucci - Casellina - Florence

Usine Gucci - Casellina - Florence

…That are archived and made available to the craftsmen

Usine Gucci - Casellina - Florence

Leather and canvas are also there, whether it’s lamb skin, Guccissima leather or the famous monogrammed materials.

Usine Gucci - Casellina - Florence

Usine Gucci - Casellina - Florence

We come across tons of vintage canvases, like this very retro houndstooth shopping bag.

Usine Gucci - Casellina - Florence

We’re continuing our tour by entering a huge room where craftsmen are working on neon-lighted counters.

Usine Gucci - Casellina - Florence

They are checking the skins before cutting them, if something is not right they make last minute operations and then meticulously cut them following a very precise and strict pattern.

Usine Gucci - Casellina - Florence

To work in those ateliers, you need to go through several years of formation. At Gucci, every single craftsmen has at least a ten years experience.

Usine Gucci - Casellina - Florence

We are thoroughly scanning the rooms, looking for robots: there are absolutely none.

Usine Gucci - Casellina - Florence

Everything here is handmade and to be able to see those people working the fabrics with scalpels we can’t help but start to picture them as some kind of surgeons. As weird as it can sound, this sight has something very sensual about it.

Usine Gucci - Casellina - Florence

Usine Gucci - Casellina - Florence

Usine Gucci - Casellina - Florence

Usine Gucci - Casellina - Florence

This machine is used to shine the crocodile leather in order to gives him the needed flexibility. You can also admire this ‘desk’ a la Crocodile Dundee with this customized chair. Swag.

Usine Gucci - Casellina - Florence

The prototypes and the bamboo

Usine Gucci - Casellina - Florence

We continue in the prototypes’ room where are designed the brand’s future products as well as special and made to measure orders.

Photographs being absolutely forbidden in here we can only show you this finished trunk, which required one month of work by two employees.

Usine Gucci - Casellina - Florence

8 to 10 trunks are manufactured each year, the prices ranging from 30 to 240 000 euros (40 300 – 320 000$). Jennifer Lopez, again, supposedly bought one that required 8 crocodiles to be produced.

Usine Gucci - Casellina - Florence

The next room is the one where belts buckles, small accessories, buttons, key holders, and bamboo handles are produced. The latter has became one of the brand’s signature over the years.

Usine Gucci - Casellina - Florence

Only one specie is used, from a Chinese bamboo tree.

Usine Gucci - Casellina - Florence

Alessio picks out half a meter stalks that will then be polished and curved with the help of a blowtorch, giving it this particular color.

Usine Gucci - Casellina - Florence

The stalk is then adorned with a amber painting, each handle being varnished and hand finished with brass rivets.

Usine Gucci - Casellina - Florence

This, once again, show us the engagement of Gucci in offering outstanding goods through the amazing high quality and the fantastic handwork.

Usine Gucci - Casellina - Florence

The factory’s tour is coming to an end and its with amazed eyes that we are coming back to Florence to visit the Gucci Museo, the subject of our next episode.

Usine Gucci - Casellina - Florence

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Mathieu

MATHIEU LEBRETON, ex fondateur

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daaamn!


3 COMMENTS

  1. Jena-Philippe Delsuc wrote, Wednesday, February 29, 2012 at 19:17

    Beau reportage Mathieu.

  2. Su wrote, Wednesday, February 29, 2012 at 23:24

    AMAZING!!!

  3. Yukihiro wrote, Saturday, July 27, 2013 at 21:44

    Truly beautiful and inspiring, it so nice to see things hand made with precision and expertise.

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