Who is Ivan Aloisio, Founder of the Fortunale Project

“My story begins forty years ago, in a provincial town called San Chirico Raparo, nestled in the mountains and surrounded by greenery, with forests, centuries-old oaks, broom and their perfume. A place of the soul for me, because I was born there, in my grandparents’ house, and the family business, the knitwear factory, was also born there, thanks to the courage of my parents who were able to realise their dreams.

I grew up among the spools of yarn and scraps of fabric, played among the textile machines and the ironing machines with their vapours. The knitting mill was my home and over the years it became my passion. Over time this passion grew, it became commitment and dedication. Today I still have the burden and honour of running the family business.

Over the years, the company expanded and moved to the Apulian manufacturing district of Cassano delle Murge, a southern Italian town surrounded by nature and the beautiful Mercadante Forest. Our collections improved a lot, we exhibited at international fairs in Paris and Dusseldorf, and our garments were bought by major European buyers. It was an incredibly fruitful period for me, I had the opportunity to travel a lot and to meet dozens and dozens of suppliers and customers. During this time I was unfortunately also able to clearly see the negative aspect of the fashion world: the pollution of the textile industry. Just think of the toxic materials used in dye works, the spills of dyes into river waters, the thousands of tonnes of synthetic fabrics and plastics that we wear every day. This awareness created a very strong conflict in me, which finally exploded with the birth of my son Jacopo.

An immense joy, accompanied by an ever-growing sense of responsibility and an incessant questioning: what could I have done for its future? That was the turning point, I decided to create a different kind of knitwear, one that would focus on the quality and value of Italian-made products and, at the same time, respect nature and the environment and protect the health of workers and consumers.

I would never have imagined it, but five years ago, together with my son Jacopo, the Fortunale project was being born.”

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