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Bottega Veneta Gloves

Jack Bettridge
From the Print Edition:
Steve Wynn, Jan/Feb 03

Some guys wait for winter's first really cold day and then just wear whatever gloves were left in their overcoat pockets at the end of last year -- matched or mismatched. Others have a sense of glove fashion informed by that first pair of idiot mittens their mothers gave them with the string that attached the pair through the coat sleeves so they couldn't lose them. Others just don't think about gloves that much. If any of these guys sound familiar, it could be time to rethink your concept of hand apparel.

Bottega Veneta has. The Italian maker of leather goods was brought into the Gucci fold in 2001 and has since hired the German designer Tomas Maier, formerly of Hermè's, as its creative director. Committed to creating a separate look within the group, he has emphasized the company's tradition of handcraftsmanship in the Veneto region of Italy. In men's gloves, that has meant a redesign that, while updating the line, harks to its signature technique of weaving leather strips into a web pattern as well as stressing the fine details that bespeak the artisanal quality of the work. Maier's overarching aesthetic direction has been to lighten the Bottega look, which had become heavier in recent years.

The glove selection bestrides a number of fine hides that include peccary (a pigskin), napa (calf), baby lamb and deerskin. The gloves come in a range of colors as well, including chocolate brown, terra, natural and black. Cashmere linings provide exceptional warmth without adding bulk, so you don't have to sacrifice style in pursuit of toasty fingers. Not only that, every time you slip your hands in, that unmistakable feel of cashmere will remind your hands that you've done them a great favor.

Of course, you have to pay for such metacarpal contentment. Sold at a price range from $380 to $660, these are not the kind of gloves you want to leave on the train. Maybe it would be a good idea to hunt down the strings from your old idiot mittens before you go out.

Visit www.bottegaveneta.com.

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