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Executive MBA (Fashion) visits Milan, the Capital of Culture, day one

The group on the rooftop at la Rinascente
The group on the rooftop at la Rinascente
The group on the rooftop at la Rinascente. Photo by Sue Dean
Written by
nrichmondswift
Published date
23 July 2015
Mantra Seta in Como, after a factory visit and presentation by one of the co-owners, Lucia Mantero (centre). Photo by Jonathan Gander

Mantra Seta in Como, after a factory visit and presentation by one of the co-owners, Lucia Mantero (centre). Photo by Jonathan Gander

LCF’s Executive MBA (Fashion) students, accompanied by tutors including EMBA course director Dr Jonathan Gander, travelled to Milan and neighbouring Como for a stimulating three day excursion to the cultural capital. The energy injected by 2015 World Expo, and the creativity of the new Fondazione Prada, has brought a fresh air of optimism. This was intoxicating, as Milan restores its position as a leading fashion capital.

Fascinating ‘behind the scenes’ tours and boardroom presentations brought to life numerous stages of the fashion value chain. This city really has recovered its position as a leader in the world of luxury style and innovation. We caught up with the highlights of the first day.

‘The most prolific thing that stands out for me was the resurgence of old family owned businesses once again building back their business.’   Valerie Ball, EMBA Candidate

A textile testing and finishing laboratory in Como. Photo by Jonathan Gander

A textile testing and finishing laboratory in Como. Photo by Jonathan Gander

One of the many machines used to test the wearability of material. Photo by Jonathan Gander

One of the many machines used to test the wearability of material. Photo by Jonathan Gander

Day one highlights

During a day in Como, the historic centre of silk production, the group visited Mantero, a family run vertically integrated weaving factory and printing house. Modern day Italian silk makers are importing raw silk from China, and completing the final stages of production in Como. Supplying the world’s major luxury houses, Mantero demonstrates how the craftsmanship of screen printing is preserved and passed down to a new generation. The company has adapted to a new era of retailing, speeding up production through digital printing. Continuing its services as partner to many leading luxury houses, Mantero has diversified through forging business with fast fashion giants like Zara.

‘What was exciting to experience during the Milan visit, was the overall sense of pride and passion to the quality, craft and detail of each stage of the production of luxury goods and dedication to the ‘Made in Italy’ statement.’ Julie Man, EMBA Candidate

Meticulous attention to detail, vital in the luxury industry, was demonstrated during a fascinating visit to CQT Qualitex. This company provides fabric inspection services and logistics for fabric producers and garment manufacturers.  The group marvelled at the painstaking degree of checking for flaws. Through a tour of the independent company, Lab Solution the group saw many processes of conducting chemical textile and environmental analysis, based on international compliance standards.

‘Coming from a science/engineering background, I appreciated seeing fashion intersect with engineering.’  Melissa Snook, EMBA Candidate