Caterina Fabrizio is leading the textile house of Didar into an authentic future

    Legendary Italian textile house Dedar was founded by Nicola and Elda Fabrizio 46 years ago in Milan when the city was establishing itself as a center for fashion, art and design. A year ago, Italian fashion designer Giorgio Armani also chose Milan to launch his namesake company.

    Al Fabrizios, who each came from families with experience in textiles, started their own artisan textile company with a team of 12, and Dedar has grown by producing contemporary textiles for curtains, tapestries, and wall coverings, and by developing process, materials, and patterns that influence global trends.

    To be closer to its textile production facilities, the company moved about 30 miles north of Milan to its manufacturing areas near Como. Here, artisans and textile specialists blend techniques by working with specialized factories and creating a network of experts.

    Over time, the small, passion-driven, family-run business has evolved into an international business, gaining relationships with some of the world’s best designers and brands such as Hermès.

    Italian textile house Dedar not only produces high-quality fabrics, but also develops process and designs that influence global trends.

    Italian textile house Dedar not only produces high-quality fabrics, but also develops process and designs that influence global trends.Damon Johnston

    It currently has 197 employees and the founders’ daughter Caterina Fabrizio is the CEO. She takes on the commercial and marketing side while her brother, Raffaele Fabrizio, serves as creative director.

    “We discuss everything,” said Caterina Fabrizio. “Each of us has the freedom to do things we feel convinced of. We leave room for expression.”

    When they see their fabrics at Tony’s Paris or a high-end restaurant in New York, she says they feel right at home and know it’s a piece of them. “It is the achievement of high quality, innovation, creativity and sharing a passionate love of curiosity, belonging and technical aspects,” explained Fabrizio.

    “Because fabric is not a finished product, we sometimes find that our fabrics are used in surprisingly different ways than we imagine,” she said. “This is part of our dialogue with the rest of the world.”

    Each year, the company selects a site or architectural structure to inspire a new collection. “Some of the new fabrics fit in here, but some don’t,” she said. “There can be two personalities and they both give value.”

    She added that the creative path leads to exploration and mistakes, and mistakes are interesting.

    “Obviously we want to be authentic with ourselves. We were one of the first and first in Europe to use technical fibres,” explaining that Dedar has also gained respect by creating weaves on very wide looms typically used for translucent and by breaking other industry standards.

    Italian textile house Dedar not only produces high-quality fabrics, but also develops process and designs that influence global trends.

    Italian textile house Dedar not only produces high-quality fabrics, but also develops process and designs that influence global trends.Damon Johnston

    Fabric makers at Dedar have enhanced the functionality and practicalities of silk by spunning high-quality polyester threads. “Everyone thought this could only be natural fiber,” Fabrizio said. “We have seen something that can fulfill different technical requirements and allow more freedom of use. We want to expand our vision.”

    Over the past five years, boucle fabrics, popularized in the 1930s and 1940s, have seen renewed interest.

    Boucle is created by having high tension on one of two loops of yarn, creating a small surface reminiscent of a lamb. This construction is well suited for delicate furniture upholstery such as Jean Royer designs.

    Today’s caterpillar’s elegant design trends combined with the irregular feel have created a great demand for the technical qualities of the fabric as well as the tactile qualities.

    Dedar has enhanced the boucle revival by introducing Karakorum fabric that is soft to the touch and durable. External version made of solution-dyed polypropylene or acrylic. Pet and ice cream safe, it opens up a whole new world of identifying opportunities.

    According to Fabrizio, about 75 percent of Dedar’s production is produced in Italy. A small percentage of France.

    When the fabric has irregular threads, it provides antique craft looms needed by expert craftsmen. For handwoven work, they look to India. The wallpaper is screen printed in Italy.

    “From a young age we understood the pleasure of touching something beautiful,” said Caterina Fabrizio. “We love the texture of the walls because it has a depth that you can’t find on paper. We want people to surround themselves with that warmth.”

    Dedar’s new project, Papier Francais Wallpapers, can restore and reproduce archival wallpaper designs on a variety of high-quality foundations. The custom-made model reduces waste while still being able to produce quickly. If the pattern has already been restored, it can be sent in two weeks.

    Not only are there hundreds of patterns out there, but more can be created in a custom color palette.

    Dedar is known for its wide color displays. Nicola Fabrizio often joked with his daughter, “You will destroy me with all these colors.”

    “Color is pure emotion,” said Caterina Fabrizio. “When we think of linens, we think of lightness or something a little dusty or muted. Silk is a material in which you can best express its luster and luster. You can have the brightest colors and it will always be very elegant. We love velvet because the color is so deep.”

    – Damon Johnston

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