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Wool takes over the canals of Venice

For more than 1000 years gondolas have been a primary means of transport along the Venetian canals. Now, Al Duca D’Aosta’s Venetian brand Emilio Ceccato – in collaboration with The Woolmark Company and the Association of Venetian Gondoliers – have created a new uniform, crafted from Australian Merino wool.

The city’s 443 gondoliers will wear the iconic blue and white stripe uniform comprising a T-shirt using Reda fabric, a sweater made from Tollegno yarn and a Marzotto quilted vest as they navigate their way through the Serenissima canals.

Thanks to wool’s natural, inherent benefits – including thermoregulation and superb breathability – the noble fibre guarantees maximum comfort and freedom of movement during physical activity, as evidenced by its increasing popularity of use in sportswear.

“We are proud that, after almost a century, the gondoliers have rediscovered wool for their uniforms," said The Woolmark Company Global Strategy Advisor Fabrizio Servente. "Their job requires high-level physical performance in extremely variable weather conditions. The return to Merino wool usage confirms the ability of this natural fibre to respond to their needs; this is why The Woolmark Company wanted to support this project with the historical brand Emilio Ceccato and Association of Venetian Gondoliers.”

Aldo Reato, President at Association of Venetian Gondoliers, declared: “We are extremely glad for this new partnership with Emilio Ceccato and The Woolmark Company. Wearing wool of high quality as the gondoliers used to do at the beginning of the 10th Century adds value and pride to our profession.”

“Loving Venice and its traditions means investing in quality and teaming up with companies who produce and promote the quality of Italian fabrics,” said Alberto Bozzo Ceo at Al Duca D’Aosta. “Emilio Ceccato’s new collection and the partnership with The Woolmark Company is an example. We are proud to offer to Association of Venetian Gondoliers garments made with the world’s best fabrics.”

Three of Venice’s Emilio Ceccato boutiques will also be stocking the new wool uniform, and it is also available to buy online at

Lisa Griplas has more than ten years experience in the media and communications industry. A journalist by trade, she spent a number of years working at a daily newspaper before moving to The Woolmark Company to take up the role of Global Editor, a title she holds today.