French luxury fashion house Saint Laurent has opened a new ‘Centre of Excellence’ for the development and production of the brand’s accessories and leather goods in Scandicci, Florence.
The L’Atelier Maroquinerie spans almost 309,000 square feet and will employ more than 500 skilled artisans and technicians as Saint Laurent looks to elevate and develop its growing leather goods and accessories businesses.
The facility will be home to Saint Laurent’s extensive research and development activities, “fostering innovation in materials and components to create pieces that express the timeless legacy and contemporary allure of the Maison”.
It will produce all of the brand’s prototypes and samples, as well as bespoke items for Saint Laurent’s VIP clients. Production activity on the site will be limited to these highly specialised items and complex projects that it states, “require the greatest degree of technical skill”.
Francesca Bellettini, chief executive officer of Saint Laurent, said in a statement: “Bringing together the development of both accessories and leather goods, the atelier will be an environment for sharing expertise, generating ideas and encouraging experimentation.
“L’Atelier Maroquinerie will help us realise our ambition to develop the most desirable leather goods and accessories in the world.”
The atelier will also be the brand’s centre of excellence for repairs and after-sales support, providing repair and refresh services for clients in Europe, while training colleagues at our worldwide repair centres to ensure globally consistent quality and service.
In addition, Saint Laurent has included a specialist school within the facility to train new hires and provide advanced courses for experienced personnel.
Bellettini added: “We are very glad to have relocated and expanded the atelier in Scandicci, as we have long since recognised the artisanal and managerial skills of the people here – and the heritage of the region for outstanding craftsmanship. L’Atelier Maroquinerie will combine generations of knowledge with new levels of innovation.”