BOOK REVIEW – How four generations built Italian fine jewellery brand FOPE


By David Brough

VICENZA, Italy – A new book, “Four Tales of Beauty,” tells the story of how four generations of the Cazzola family built up the Italian luxury jewellery brand FOPE, surviving huge political shifts and adapting to rapidly changing markets.

The book was launched at the VOICE trade show organised by Vicenzaoro on September 13, 2020, a public event featuring a conversation between chief marketing officer Marilisa Cazzola and Jewellery Outlook Editor David Brough.

The “Four Tales of Beauty” relates the beginnings of the company, in a parts workshop in Vicenza in northeast Italy run by Umberto Cazzola in 1929, and expanding as a manufacturer under his son Odino. FOPE is now led by Odino’s son Umberto, Marilisa’s husband.

All three overcame technological challenges and seized market opportunities, such as Odino’s decision to manufacture adjustable watch straps, and the present chairman Umberto’s development of three-dimensional bracelets and necklaces, a signature of the brand.

The book also describes the vital contribution in marketing of Giulia, Umberto and Marilisa’s daughter, the fourth generation, who died last year.

Giulia was instrumental in the opening of the New York City premises and developed in-house marketing that Marilisa continues today.

A key aspect of the book is its description of Giulia’s personality and her contribution to the development and internationalisation of the FOPE brand.

The book describes the various periods through which the four generations lived, from the Mussolini era in the years after Umberto established the business, to the late 1940s when Umberto and Odino played an important part in the launch of the Vicenza gold jewellery fair, up to the present time.

Four Tales of Beauty

Now FOPE has evolved into an internationally respected manufacturer and jewellery brand, with its own standalone boutique on St Mark’s Square in Venice, a magnet for luxury tourists visiting the city, and is distributed to high-end retailers around the world.

FOPE also has a standalone boutique on Old Bond Street in London.  Next month FOPE will open its first boutique in Asia, in Kuala Lumpur.

Launch of the "Four Tales of Beauty"

Launch of the “Four Tales of Beauty” at the VOICE event in Vicenza, September 2020.