If anyone’s still not convinced that excellent craftsmanship survives and indeed thrives all over Italy, here’s another sublime example. Actually, this is craftswomanship, white earthenware production to be precise, and of the very highest order, as accomplished by Costanza Paravicini. She’s been at it for more than 20 years, in her own backyard in the heart of old Milan, creating bespoke pots of a type and quality apparently consigned to memory lane by industrial production. Laboratorio Paravicini is still known to few, devoted customers who prefer their tableware very fine, completely handmade and custom-decorated. That said, a line of contemporary print designs in limited editions, which debuted more or less when Costanza’s designer daughter Benedetta Medici joined her in the atelier, outed the brand and made a splash during Design Week 2015 with a Collection signed by artist Vittore Frattini.
The Paravicini workshop makes its own extra-thin, white ceramic biscuit – pottery after its first firing for those not versed in such matters – in a series of profiles. These pieces are then decorated freehand, using printed designs, or even impressed while still soft. They’re then glazed and fired at high temperature to make them safe and suitable for everyday use, even dishwasher-proof. It’s a time-honoured process that makes for a brilliant white earthenware and intense colours, and that goes for entire dinner services or unique centrepieces. You can visit during the morning, Monday to Friday, without an appointment, but call to arrange an afternoon meeting. And if you’re in town for Design Week 2016 (April 12th to 17th), don’t miss a surprise event called Play Plate launching a new collection, on Wednesday 13th in the evening, at the Paravicini atelier. Laboratorio Paravicini could be one of your stops on a Milan walking tour: visit Milan Experience Tours and contact us for more information.