UK Enterprise Awards 2021

234 | UK Enterprise Awards 2021 La Sartoria, The Italian Textile Company LTD Situated in the heart Reading, La Sartoria serves the area with high quality tailoring and clothing alterations. We speak to owner and founder, Ilenia Mocci, about her passion for the industry and how the Covid pandemic brought about a new business venture. La Sartoria – The Italian Textile Company is Reading’s leading and most experienced alterations and tailoring service, with more than 30 years of experience. With a vast background in the fashion industry, owner Ilenia Mocci established La Sartoria (literally meaning ‘the tailor shop’ in Italian) in 2016. Born in Sardinia before spending most of her childhood between Milan and New York, Ilenia wiled away many years at her mother and grandmother’s sides in their respective atelier studios, which still operate today. When she opened La Sartoria – which translates to ‘The Tailor Shop’ – in Reading, Ilenia brought with her the talent and passion for tailoring that was embedded into her very DNA. It is her vision, a place in time that fosters individuality, combining creativity and independent expression. Today, Ilenia is accompanied by a team of successful and experienced tailors and seamstresses who, under Ilenia’s expert eyes, can create almost anything, carrying out the most impeccable work. “We do many different types of alterations and repairs from leather garments to evening dresses, not forgetting men’s tailoring,” explains Ilenia of the services offered. “Our Bridal Studio is well known for its professional attention to detail, and we are recognised for our meticulous attention to detail, reasonable prices, and we take pride in always providing excellent customer service.” La Sartoria’s clientele consists of both private and business customers who have become very loyal over the years. But the shop does not only provide simple tailoring and repair services, it also has customers who seek out advice on finding outfits that are suitable for their individual style and shape. “This kind of trust makes us even more humble,” Ilenia says. “Looking after our customers in the way we do is our solid base for everything. To put it simply: We care.” However, it is not just the clientele that are looked after, for Ilenia also places a large emphasis on the contentment of her dedicated team and works hard to ensure that they are happy. “Without our great team, there is no La Sartoria,” she enthuses. “We are like family where everyone works towards the same goal: success of the company.” All of La Sartoria’s staff share a similar background and many match the strong heritage of clothing industry experience that Ilenia had when growing up. “This attitude is embedded in La Sartoria. It is a place in time that fosters individuality, combines creativity and independent expression.” Going forward, Ilenia’s main specific industry- based challenge is finding fully qualified seamstresses and tailors who can work independently, fast and in an efficient manner, and who understand the responsibility when working on the customer’s garment. “The young generation sadly do not have this experience therefore finding fully qualified staff is rather challenging,” she explains. “This trade truly is a high skilled trade but sadly not appreciated as such. We find this situation hard to overcome but just now our situation is manageable.” During lockdowns, La Sartoria lost a lot of business, like so many other businesses did, but luckily it was also able to reinvent and reinvigorate its online services by quickly creating an online shop to sell the shop’s own locally produced masks and other small products. This then led to Ilenia expanding the shop’s tailoring services online too and suddenly a new ‘Tailor by Post’ service was born! “This service is aimed to our customers all over the United Kingdom and for those local customers who are not able or do not want to leave their home. This new service, Tailor by Post, brings our tailoring services directly to the customer’s door. With just a couple of clicks, you can get your garments altered or repaired at the comfort of your own home. Our highly skilled tailors can replace zips and buttons, make size adjustment, shorten and lengthen hems and any other tailoring you need, just within a week or so!” It is partly due to this adaptation to her services, and the sheer resilience of Ilenia and the team to carry on despite the pandemic, that La Sartoria was recently awarded the prestigious accolade of Best Bespoke Tailoring & Alterations Business – Berkshire. “In 2021 we are determined to keep our business growing with the set-up we have at the moment,” she says. “Once life is back to normal and we have caught up to the situation we were before the pandemic, who knows – there are always several ideas in our mind which we want to turn into reality.” Contact: Ilenia Mocci Company: La Sartoria, The Italian Textile Company LTD Web Address: Jun21124 Best Bespoke Tailoring & Alterations Business - Berkshire