Fattobene - Italian Everyday Archetypes

I’ve been following this project for several years now, and I’ve always thought I’d love sharing a mindful story of research on good design and unique histories.


Composition - FATTOBENE / Shop
All images ©︎ FATTOBENE

Founded in 2015, Fattobene is a selection of Italian-made humble masterpieces which made the history of everyday objects in my country.  “Fattobene means well made in Italian. It is an online shop and a platform to archive and sell Italian everyday archetypes that have a long history.”


COCCOINA / Almond-scented glue for paper, fabric, photography, Balma Capoduri & C. Voghera (Pavia), Since 1927

The creative engine beyond that is Anna Lagorio, journalist, and Alex Carnevali, photographer.


SULFUR STICKS / Folk remedy for neck pain and joint aches, Genoa, 19th century

They travel throughout Italy to rediscover beautifully crafted quality items that have been producing the same way for hundreds of years. They tell us unknown stories about objects that are difficult to find anywhere else.


PANEANGELI BAKING POWDER / Single-pack vanilla-vanilla-flavored baking powder, E. Riccardi, Cremona, Since 1932

It’s exciting seeing a collection of pieces I’ve been using and playing with in my life, and to acknowledge I’ve been part of a vivid Italian industrial history as well as my parents and grandparents too.

In fact, this is a project which crosses generations and holds them together through a very contemporary fancy-pop visual mood, the perfect bridge between “now and then”: the result is an atlas of Italian material culture, a journey through real icons of everyday life, over the years.

They are the archetypes of Made in Italy, objects which are so well designed to be able to resist time and fashions.

The collection goes from the most recent we own in our houses, like the baking powder Paneangeli and the widespread Zenith stapler, to the Crystal Ball, the iconic unbreakable bubbles that are still stuck in the mind of 90’s children, or the Coccoina, a marzipan scented glue that smelled so good you would have eaten - mom said -; in fact it was designed to be even safely ingested by the kids.


ZENITH "590 MIX" STAPLER, / Balma, Capoduri & C., Voghera (Pavia), Since 1948


CRYSTAL BALL / Colorful unbreakable bubbles, Burago di Molgora (Monza Brianza), Since 1947


CIFRA 3 CLOCK / Mechanic clock with flap system, Solari di Udine, since 1966


AMARENA FABBRI / Candied and stoneless sour cherries in syrup, Bologna, Since 1915

Fattobene has a great merit: insisting on the memory of common beauty and keeping open a dialogue between the past and the present.

People love something familiar that is passed down from generation to generation, and they’re also caught by a dose of affectionate nostalgia when it comes to habits or identities of a community. All of these products are still in production, but sometimes it’s nearly impossible finding them in the vast distribution market.

That’s why Fattobene exists. People buy these products, allowing them to continue living in the contemporary world, which is the exact thing I did with Christmas presents this year. 

My parents couldn’t believe that I found a bit of their childhood in 2019.


TASSONI SODA / Citron scented non-alcoholic sparkling drink, Cedral Tassoni, Salò (Brescia), Since 1793


MODIANO PLAYING CARDS / 52 laminated French-style cards plus two rogues, Trieste, from 1884


TAMARINDO ERBA / Soft drink with an acidic aftertaste, Carlo Erba, Milan, Since 1898


LEONE CANDY ORIGINALS / Cold-pressed sugar pills in 40 different flavors, with fruit juices, essential oils and natural extracts, Turin, Since 1857


AMARELLI LICORICE / Pure licorice in irregular pieces, Amarelli, Rossano (Cosenza), Since 1731

Fattobene INFO