Rome doesn’t have the menswear popularity of Milan, Florence or Naples. However there are some uncommon little gems nestled in several elements of the town.
One of the crucial attention-grabbing is Atelier Bomba. Began by Cristina Bomba in 1980, it has a popularity for positive knitwear and unstructured tailoring.
Neither the web site nor suggestions we got actually do the place justice, nonetheless – significantly on the tailoring.
It’s a small, slender store, simply off the massive Piazza del Popolo. However the entire rear half is a working atelier, with drapey jackets, coats and trousers being made to measure.
The partitions are stacked with a surprising vary of fabric. A lot of it’s classic, and all of it’s uncommon however tasteful. The instance under is a classic hand-loomed cashmere. It virtually had Milad and I ordering based mostly on the material alone.
Cristina was readily available, however the day-to-day operating of Bomba is finished by her son, Michele (pictured prime) together with his sister Caterina and spouse Julia additionally intently concerned.
Michele is definitely a skilled bespoke tailor, and makes his personal fits solely himself.
“I made a deliberate choice years in the past to not make that a part of the enterprise,” he mentioned. “The one solution to have finished it could be to outsource manufacturing, to grow to be a supervisor, and I didn’t wish to do this.”
Michele didn’t perceive how anyone might make a bespoke garment with out the cutter, and ideally the maker, seeing the client. That led to an extended dialog about practices amongst tailors and shoemakers, which might be not value reproducing right here. However I suppose may make an attention-grabbing future submit.
After we arrived at Bomba a buyer was having a pair of navy linen trousers made. He was carrying them with a black polo shirt and smooth slip-ons, and regarded very a lot the easygoing half.
The trousers regarded properly fitted. Inside, that they had an terrible lot of handwork – not all obligatory maybe, however most likely half and parcel of the expertise in case you like every part being made on web site.
The jacket I attempted on (under) had an equally spectacular quantity of handwork, and was properly styled. Although personally, I’d most likely want a little bit of construction in a basic DB like this. The lapel peaks have been a bit unruly with out it.
“Typically we do put a bit canvas within the jackets, only one layer of linen,” mentioned Michele, “and no shoulder pads. The items can actually be whichever mixture the client desires – that’s the plain side of getting every part made right here.”
The model of among the jackets was additionally a bit quirky – the jacket I attempted on had two buttons of various sizes. However once more, Michele emphasised that this was only one model, and many shoppers made extra delicate commissions.
There have been beautiful craft particulars elsewhere too. The shirt/jacked pictured above had intentionally matched checks on the buttonholes, for instance, which I can’t bear in mind seeing earlier than.
We didn’t have time to attempt many items – I hadn’t realised fairly how attention-grabbing the store could be, or how participating Michele and Cristina – however I think a shirt/jacket like this is likely to be extra my model. There are additionally lengthy coats, work jackets and robes.
The knitwear was equally beautiful, and might need broader enchantment too.
Apparently one in all Cristina’s early obsessions was knitwear with the look of shetland, however gentle sufficient to be worn within the Roman local weather, so she labored with melange cashmere to get an analogous combine of colors. You possibly can see the vary within the cupboard above. They’re all very gentle and really smooth.
The opposite knit they’re identified for is super-fine merinos. (As in super-fine knitting, not the fibre itself.)
Fairly like Umbria Verde, their manufacturing unit in Como makes use of outdated English looms that the founder took aside and remade, in an effort to get a finer setting. They now work at 45-gauge, which is why the items are so clear (above). Once more, significantly suited to Rome.
Bomba, though small, has historical past and connections. The household was good associates with Vittorio Solbiati, and all the time made use of their linens.
“When the corporate was being bought lately, we received a name to come back and take what we needed from the inventory room,” says Michele. “That outdated fabric had been a part of the sale, however nobody needed it.
“So we drove up in a van and crammed it to the highest with probably the most stunning bolts. We nonetheless have a variety of it behind the store – it should take us some time to get via it.”
They’ve additionally been pivotal in retaining the character of their avenue, Through dell’Oca. “After the pandemic, there have been a variety of empty streets right here,” says Michele. “We satisfied some associates, similar to Patrizia Fabri subsequent door, to take them. In any other case they may have simply grow to be vacationer locations and sandwich outlets.”
These aren’t Fabri staw hats under – they’re by Bomba – however Fabri’s are all made in a bit atelier on the opposite facet of the river. One other little Roman gem.
I’ll positively be again to see Bomba, hopefully this yr. There was a lot to discover, and Cristina and Michele have been so beautiful.
Cristina specifically regarded achingly stylish regardless of the 35-degree warmth, in an white linen tunic, jewelry and sandals. She jogged my memory fairly of the equally fashionable Audie Charles at Anderson & Sheppard.
Each are additionally stuffed with enjoyable. Michele was pleased to have his portrait taken, however Cristina mentioned she’d solely accomplish that if there may very well be some knitwear within the shot too.
The primary picture under is what she gave us. Then she mentioned the knitwear would look higher on the canine, and proceeded to decorate him up.
Michele watched on, arms folded, with a smile.
Bomba just isn’t low-cost, largely a results of making a lot by hand, on web site. The jacket I used to be carrying value €2800, and a piece coat in linen was €1700. The cashmere knits begin at €570.
Through dell’Oca 39, Rome
Images, Milad Abedi