Dedication, Respect, Loyalty, Word of Honor and Hard work are some of the values that represent the foundation of this Italian craftsman family. Consider by many to be responsible for making the best boxing gloves in the world, don’t bother going to is small workshop in Turin, Italy to buy them, because If you will like to order one pair of these beauties now, you will need to wait six months until you have it. We talked to Filippo Di Nardo himself and try to discover when all started and what make is gloves so unique. Dive in!
JabtoJab: Take us through the history of the Di Nardo label? How all happened?
Filippo Dinardo: I belong to a family that from generation to generation always was involve in the tailoring businesses. So, I study until the primary school and after I decided to start working. I was fourteen years old when I went to work as an apprentice in the workshop of my father. So… I learned the trade of the family. In my family we are three, two brothers and one sister but I’m the only one that continue the trade of the family. I’m the last one, basically. Because my father is dead and my mother is old, so I’m the last of this generation. So at the age of twenty I started boxing and the passion for boxing just explode and I wanted boxing to be my life but obviously Italy is not the capital of boxing , so I was immediately exclude. First because of my age. I was already old and second boxing doesn’t get paid that much here in Italy. They have to have a second job to survive. One night I was dreaming, myself in the workshop creating the gloves. Then I just wake up in the middle of the night and I said: I’m going to put my skills on the table and create the best boxing gloves in the world. It was very hard because I’m not in a capital of boxing. So all the gloves that are in the market most of them United States, Mexico, United Kingdom. So you are in the capital of boxing and it is more easy to come out and say: look I’m here. But I’m in Italy and it was very, very hard for me to come out and say to world: look I’m here. I’m the best glove maker in the world. It takes long time. I started in 2006, creating prototypes. I had economic collapses two times in 2008 and 2012. The solution: I just get up again and work, and work and work… Dedication! And I’m still here today you know. So that’s the story, basically.
I was really fascinated by the story of Steve jobs. I bought his book. His biography inspired me so much. it gave me lot’s of clues and input’s. so… I start to work. dedication….
What inspire you to make a new pair of gloves ? Basically, when I decided to put my tailor skills and create the best boxing gloves in the world it was a moment when all the Apple products start to arrive in Italy. The ipod, Iphone, Apple computers… I was really fascinated by the story of Steve jobs. I bought his book. His biography inspired me so much. It gave me lot’s of clues and input’s, so I start to work and dedication. After lots of attempts I create the first prototype. I decided to test, make a few pairs and test the market. The local market, just tested inside my country. It was my first brand. Amazing. Lot’s of people heard about Mason’s boxing gloves. It was starting to become huge because I was working a lot with the United States. Through an American company that distributes my products in all United States. But not so long after I start having troubles with this company and we broke up basically. They made lot’s of damage to the brand. So I decide to close Mason’s boxing Gloves and stop working with retailers or distributors and work on my own. Change the politics of my company and stop branding the gloves name of the invention and decided to use my own name, Di Nardo, and that’s what inspired me to be where I am now.
What type of materials and equipment you use ? Has I said I’m from a family that was always involved in tailoring business and all that process. Obviously I decide to use the best leather. In Italy it is were the best leather in the world come from. Most of the prime material on the planet. For example all the components, all the inside interiors of exclusive German cars like BMW, Mercedes, Audi come and are made from Italy and then they finish the cars in Germany. Just to point out that all the primary materials in the planet come from this country. From Italy. I decided to buy the best materials in the world. And the cost of the material wasn’t bothering me at all. The only things bothering me is that I want to give my costumer the best. Not a cheap product but something unique. When I go out to buy material I never asked how much it cost. I just want top quality. No matter the price, just give me that. I work with the best leather, special product like lining, microfiber flag, rubber from poly retro foam. Only the best prime materials in the planet. And obviously that make my product unique.
When I go out to buy material I never asked how much it cost. I just want top quality. No matter the price, just give me that.
Talk us throw the difference stages of producing a Di Nardo boxing glove for a professional fighter? From the buying the materials to shipping the final product. To make one pair of boxing gloves it takes twelve hours. Just one pair. So when people see boxing gloves, two, three pairs that are attached together, that is not what I do. All the other brands make gloves on a easier way. They don’t care about details. They just care about the outside of the glove. I care about the inside of the glove like the outside of the glove. To make a boxing glove has I make it takes 70 pieces of different products. So, to make one pair, left and right hand I use 70 pieces of different pieces each. It is a long process to start the making. Cutting the pieces, putting them together, then you can star sewing the glove. Then, after that it comes the padding preparation. Then the holding process with your hands. The holding must be good. Then the padding to put inside of the gloves to make the shape of the glove. Then printing. Branding the glove. And some type of customization. All this process is to make just one pair. Twelve hours!
The most recent achievement of the Di Nardo company? It is the launched of my sportswear’s line. It is been already two years since I’m working on this but only recently I launched. I was also waiting for the economic resources to launch it. Finally, now the Di Nardo sportswear’s line came out and I can honestly say it is a success. Obviously, the prices are affordable for everybody. So this was the biggest achievement of this year. But I can talk about other things that for me are achievements. Like for example when I find another special material like new leader or when I make a new design. Then this new material gain shape, becomes a glove and for that, is alrady an achievement too. All the certifications the gloves gain with the international associations are also a big achievement for me. Specially for a small craftsman like me. Then all the boxers and promoters that I work with is an achievement for me too. And then everybody knows I work a lot and I don’t have employees. I do everything with the help of anybody. So that’s the true.
Everybody knows I don’t pay anybody!
And bad moments? During my professional life, I had good moment and bad moment. I have been disappointed with boxers. From people that cooperated with me. Very unfair attitudes from few boxers that I work with. Anyway, this is part of the business and I’m fine with that. I learn to accept. Everybody knows I don’t pay anybody! All around the world they pay boxers to use gloves. They give the product plus money. I don’t pay nobody. All the boxers use my gloves because of the prestige and because they are unique gloves. The Ferrari of the boxing gloves! Just to say that most of the time I have a few disappointments with boxers. When a professional boxer starts to grow up in his career then all the other companies run and offer money. It is all part of the game. Today, I don’t complain. This happen also this year. It is alright. It is the part of the bad moment. Because, when you invest in something and you believe in somebody and you get repaid in this way…. has I say this is part of the game. But I have many achievements. Beautiful cooperation’s with beautiful boxers, huge boxer,s huge names and they respect me, my work, what I’m doing for them. For me it is enough. I’m not looking to have all the boxers with me. I could not afford that. In terms of production, you know. Has I said I’m working alone. Only equipped for small to medium quantities. I cannot satisfy so much requests you know. The waiting for one pair of my gloves it is around 180 days waiting!
For more details on Di Nardo Gloves click here