Our Story


Mario Cangini and Nicola Silvagni founded Department Five in 2007, after a long time friendship built on a shared sense of style.

Their passionate vision roots in a deep fashion knowledge and is carefully manufactured by Catria Confezioni, from 1970 focused on cut and tailoring.

To fully understand Department Five story, it is essential to go back to 1977, when Cangini opens Space Number Five, a small boutique in Milano Marittima, on the Riviera Romagnola in Italy, which will quickly turn into a directional store for the whole fashion system, with the shortened name of Space. He flawlessly mixes unique vintage pieces with the most exciting brands of the time, like Azzedine Alaïa, Montana, Kenzo, Thierry Mugler, Jean Paul Gaultier and Comme Des Garçons, that he buys on their first European season, thus creating a tight relationship with the brand.

Nicola Silvagni is then young and hugely into music and fashion and when he comes across Cangini and his free-spirited universe. He acknowledges Mario’s outstanding aesthetic and happily joins Space team, meanwhile expanded to Ravenna, Firenze and Cesena.

Silvagni and Cangini turn into real friends, with the same unconventional way to engage customers with the right product at the right time. They can feel the trends before they get too mainstream and they only buy collections they firmly believe in.

When they launch Department Five in 2007, with Silvagni as the Creative Director and Cangini as his strategic alter-ego, they start with menswear. Their key point is blending workwear and military functionality with a rock attitude and the most intriguing trends of the time.

Thanks to the partnership with Catria Confezioni, Department Five quickly enters the fashion radar of top buyers and final customers who all appreciate a very well balanced pricing for good quality fabrics and Made in Italy manufacturing.

Parkas, field jackets and chinos are the real icons of the brand, completed by shirts, knitwear, sweatshirts and denimwear.

In 2010, Silvagni develops womenswear too, finding the right compromise between hot trends and the typical Department Five military/workwear mood.

Department Five strength is a combination of the team constantly scanning the most sophisticated fashion scene in London, Los Angeles, New York, Tokyo and Paris, while Catria Confezioni complies with customers needs on deliveries, reorders and special made to order requests.

The new Department Five showroom is now officially open in via Archimede 10, in Milano, while national and international distribution has been carefully redefined, with a strong focus on Japanese market.

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