With a few weeks of delay, Milan is finally blossoming, trees are green again and summer seems to be finally coming. The time to make a choice about the look to wear on the beach this year is approaching, and with it the birth (and fast death) of many aspiring and unstructured swimwear fashion brands. But one seems to be different from the others, and has its roots in places very close to where we all study every day.The startup I want to tell you about today is Chiaja, born from three Bocconi students, Alessando, Umberto and Gabriele, with the dream to re-invent the way men’s swim shorts are worn and used.
“Last summer we looked around ourselves, while on vacation in some of the most exclusive Italian destinations, and with a critic eye we acknowledged that the quality of the swim shorts, their shape, was superficial at best” says Alessandro, “men looked mostly sloppy; this held true not only for non-swimwear fashion brands, but also for the most famous luxury swimwear brands, where colorful prints tried to cover the lack of attention for details”.
From this point on, these three friends embarked on an year-long journey made of hundreds of emails and thousands of kilometers traveled to find the best – Italian – suppliers to help them realize their vision: men’s swim shorts able to convey the elegance of the Neapolitan tailor tradition yet laid-back enough as summer is. Swim shorts able to convey unconstrained elegance, versatile and smart enough to be worn not only for swimming but also at pool parties and exclusive summer aperitifs, or while dining by the sea in the best restaurants.
No details were left to chance, from the name Chiaja, pronounced “kiaia”, which is the neighborhood that hosts the most renowned Neapolitan tailors and derives from the Spanish word playa declined in the local dialect, to the help of Neapolitan tailors to draw their most iconic product, the tailored, based on the traditional design of a man’s suit trouser according to the Parthenopean sartorial heritage.
For the wonderful designs of their first collection, they hired a talented and experienced designer who took inspiration, lots of it, from Capri, Amalfi and Positano.
Consistently with their image of craftsmanship, all the swim shorts are handmade in Italy by skillful artisans, and of course, the packaging is simply wonderful.
We want to wish these three Bocconi friends all the best for their endeavor (their only shortcoming is that they don’t have a women’s swimwear line – just yet, reassures me Umberto) and thank them for the gift code they made for us, for a 20% off your first purchase: CHIAJABS4F.
Bocconi Students for Fashion