Subject 10: Textile – an economic sector in crisis, with some exceptions

Supervisor Mr. Badiali (I)
Students Giulia Ferri (I) | Ludwig Kayser (D) | Mike Sartor (L)
Sara Marcucci (I) | Michelle Reichelt (D) | Claire Pavan (L)


Monnalisa is a company that produces childrens clothes, established by Piero Iacomoni and Barbara Bertocci, in 1968.

The philosophy of Monnalisa is based on a unique combination of entrepreneurial spirit, innovation, establishing new markets, style and a particular attention to the evolution of the company’s resources.

The interior market counts 17 European countries, the overseas market includes Eastern Europe, Russia, Asia, the Middle-East and the United States.

That Wednesday we visited the company and the owner of the factory Piero Iacomoni showed us the different stages of the fabrication of their clothes: from its conceptive creation to the production itself.

He explained why he decided to produce children’s clothes. We interviewed him, and he gave us his explanations via the example of one of their dresses. After our visit, we worked in groups of 3, mine included Michelle and Giulia. We produced a Prezi with parts of our interview. We learned that there are many different stages from textile design to the finished piece of clothing. I was excited to have had the opportunity to visit a factory such as Monnalisa.

Claire Pavan


Lebole was a large factor on the outskirts of the city of Arezzo. It produced luxury clothes until the year 2000. Nowadays, the city and its mayor are looking for redevelopment solutions for the Lebole wasteland. They would like to build an attractive centre for young people and adolescents in its place. Currently, there is a plan for a modern building with stores.

Our group, made up of six youngsters, coming from Arezzo, Dudelange and Berlin also had our thoughts about what would be feasible on this massive piece of land. We picked out and presented some of our ideas, for example, a recreational facility or a sports centre, as this is one thing youth in Arezzo seem to really be missing.

Our aim was to propose a solution with the adolescent interests in mind, which would at the same time be something outstanding in the entire region. Hence, we proposed to build a swimming pool with an openable sunroof with a surrounding sports park, including a climbing wall, perhaps a carting track or a skatepark, on the land across the street which also belongs to Lebole.

Inside the park there could be a kiosk with a large terrasse for relaxing. Further, we also had the idea to build a hall with music rehearsal rooms and a space to organise concerts in.

We created a Prezi presentation in which you can discover photos and a video retracing our mindstorming.

Mike Sartor

Supplementary information

The company saw its day in the fifties thanks to Mario and Giovanni Lebole, two Tuscan industrials, who for many years had been on the summit of European fashion. In the Pietro da Cortona lane, there would rapidly be 200 employees, mainly women, directed by Mother Catherine and developing a more and more standardised production. The old factory cannot keep up with the growth and so the Chiassa Superiore is a first transfer of location. Shortly thereafter, in 1961, the construction of a new factory becomes necessary via Ferraris. It is there that thousands of workers, still mainly women, coming from the countryside, are employed. Around 1968 that employment reaches 5.000 people, a record for Arezzo. This will all come to an end in the mid-90ies. Currently the cost of production is too high for chain clothing. The factory was sold to Marzotto in 1987but kept progressively losing workers. Despite efforts to revive, the inevitable closure comes in 2000. The Lebole brothers left the business: Mario commits suicide in 1983 after some financial misadventures. Giannetto dies of illness toward the end of the 90ies.