Luxury Italian Outerware: MONOBI

Monobi Varick_7Discovering a new menswear brand with which most people may be unfamiliar is often one of the great joys of running OTC.

We love to tell you about companies and products that are the best at what they do. And, when that brand makes some truly remarkable products, it only adds to the moment. Such an experience helps to remind us that around the world, in places starkly remote and suffocatingly urban, there live people obsessed with creating unique, finely crafted goods designed to make your life that much more comfortable, stylish, and interesting.

Italian outerwear label MONOBI is such a story. MONOBI is located in Prado, Tuscany, a center of Italy’s textile industry. The brand was founded by Beste, a family-owned fabric and garment manufacturer, as an in-house luxury menswear label that reflects the best in innovative, urban inspired design.

Since 1992, Beste has closely worked with leading fashion companies including Burberry, Louis Vuitton, Georgio Armani, Prada and Yves Saint Laurent, crafting their visions into reality, developing innovative textile solutions, and scouting the market for new materials. By blending technical capabilities with a family business environment, Beste has become a byword for the best in luxury textile manufacturing and innovation.

Monobi Varick_6Their MONOBI line is geared to high-end outdoor wear; jackets, coats, and lightweight active wear options. Regardless of material and style, this fabric-focused company creates exceptional products with a minimalist design and a serious focus on detail. Though deceptively simple in design, these garments have the drape and construction of runway ready clothing.

We reviewed the Varik Windbreaker, an impossibly lightweight and compact garment that you could almost lose if stuffed in your messenger bag. it’s traditional active wear design is comfortable, allows for ease of motion, and breaths well even on long runs.

The stovepipe hood provides full coverage and smartly placed vents cool and allow good airflow. The elastic wait and wrists are extremely comfortable and keep the Varik secure without the binding or tension often association with elastic.

What really sets the Varik apart is the lightweight fabric. It is fully water resistant and a very effective wind blocker. It is manufactured in a way that allows for all the seams to be bonded flat, making them strong and nearly invisible. Even the zippers are custom designed to lay flat and blend into the garment, while at the same time feeling strong and sturdy. The jacket also sports a collection of clever interior pockets that add virtually no bulk even when in use.

All this quality and exceptional design, construction, and materials do cost more that you might expect. At US$650.00, the MONOBI Varik is no doubt expensive. However, given all the work and quality that goes into this classic piece of practical outerwear, if you have the funds, we highly recommend the investment.

And, of course there’s the added cache of exclusivity. Chances are, you will be one of the few people who know of, let alone appreciate the excetional quality of, Beste and MONOBI.

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