23.12.2016 | fondazione zegna

San Patrignano: two scarves to warm the heart

A special Christmas gift prepared by girls in the textiles studio supported by Fondazione Zegna

The Christmas festivities are important at San Patrignano. The windows of the warehouse where the young people in the Community prepare the gift packs now stay lit till late at night. Lights that in this period chase away the shadows from their past even more effectively. Thanks to their new life in the Community in fact, they have all started to grow again as people and reacquire a taste for living through this work experience and sense of responsibility.

One of the gift ideas they are working on is a Christmas pack containing two scarves, one for women and one for men, in extra-fine merino wool hand woven on looms by people who took part in a weaving course funded by Fondazione Zegna.

For four years now, everyday, 30 girls have been weaving and sewing products for the market and thus supporting the Community’s economic independence. The aim of this initiative, coordinated by Barbara Guarducci (, a designer and creative director of textile design projects of social usefulness, is to teach girls the techniques involved in creating and processing noble fabrics such as cashmere and cotton using wooden looms, knitting, crochet and hand finishing. The studio is developing an old craft by updating it to current market tastes in fashion and design.

Set up in 2013, the facility embarked on its first real projects in 2014, including the collaboration with Agnona (an Ermenegildo Zegna private label) which produced plaids and scarves for its autumn-winter collection. In 2015, its tangible results included, in chronological order, 200 plaids, certified “Made in San Patrignano”, for a major Chinese company. Fondazione Zegna has sponsored two annual internships for girls who complete the training and want to work in the weaving sector. And with support from Barbara Guarducci meetings were organized with key figures in the world of fashion and design. This opening up to the market and encountering influential personalities provided the Community with lots of new stimuli, new energy and new ideas to develop together.

Thanks to the manual aspects characterizing their activities, the girls gain direct experience of the value of expertise, the discipline required to achieve goals, focus on perfection in execution and the resulting habit of appreciating beauty, which helps them regain their own interior beauty and self-esteem.