Arezzo, 28th June 2021

For Maria Cristina Squarcialupi President of UNOAERRE, driving the family business means carrying on its values, tradition, creativity and excellence.

Founded in Arezzo in 1926 thanks to the meeting between Carlo Zucchi and Leopoldo Gori, UNOAERRE is the first goldsmith company in the city, a pioneer in industrial gold processing. Today, it is the bearer of a very ancient goldsmith tradition (Arezzo goldsmith has a thousand-year history) and it represents an international reference point of Made in Italy excellence in the production of jewellery.

Artisans at work in the historical UNOAERRE company

The pride of the company is the production of wedding rings, symbols of indissoluble union. The manufacturing process is fascinating: each wedding ring is made from a unique block of precious metal to ensure a final result without welding or impurities. It is precisely with this piece of jewellery of inestimable emotional value that the company accompanies the Italian families every year to the point that 70% of the weddings in Italy are celebrated with the rings by UNOAERRE.

Laura Inghirami discovering the manufacturing phases of UNOAERRE wedding rings

Classiche wedding rings, in 18 carats yellow gold, are still today the most popular in our country” says Maria Cristina Squarcialupi. “Italians are attached to tradition, and they wish to marry with the same rings which have sealed their parents’ and grandparents’ marriages.” Comode wedding rings are also highly appreciated. “They combine comfort with love”. However, young people’s taste does not always meet older generations’ preferences: the former prefer wedding rings more and more thin and light. The offers by UNOAERRE range widely in order to satisfy different needs. In fact, the company addresses to mixed customers. “On the one hand –explains Maria Cristina Squarcialupi – we refer to young women, fond of trends, on the other hand to more mature women, fond of the brand, who perceive us as a historic firm.”

Wedding rings, UNOAERRE

The strength of UNOAERRE is the great attention to sustainability, and the constant commitment of the company. “How do you pursue this choice which till some years ago was perceived as a possibility, but today has become a necessity?” I ask to Maria Cristina Squarcialupi. “UNOAERRE has always been at the forefront on this matter, acting concretely both from the environmental and social responsibility point of view. Our supply chain is traced and ethical. 90% of the materials we use is recycled. Chimet, a family business, is an international leader in the recycling and refining of precious materials. This is how we contribute actively to the circular economy. The value of the precious metals is ensured by our internal laboratory, one of the few in Italy accreditated to this type of analysis. Moreover, our upcoming goal is to increasingly reduce CO2 emissions. This is why we are installing the photovoltaic system in our company. We intend to limit the use of plastic, both internally and in packaging, and in the meantime we are investing in digital technologies to improve the manufacturing process and the logistics. Our commitment to sustainability is proved by international certifications. In fact, we support the Responsible Jewellery Council which is responsible for indicating and applying precise environmental, social and ethical standards to the companies in the jewellery sector. Furthermore, we use the SMETA PILLAR 4 protocol, based on working conditions, health, safety, working environment and business practices. This is just part of our ongoing commitment.”

The chain, one of the most iconic UNOAERRE jewels

As a proof of UNOAERRE’s ability to keep up with times, we can recall its ability to intercept contemporary trends and reinterpret them in a completely innovative way, while being loyal to its historic identity. The same approach is being pursued today, as Maria Cristina Squarcialupi tells me. “We have relaunched in Italy our Fashion Jewellery line made in bronze and silver, inspired by classic shapes but at the same time attentive to the current trends and fashion, constantly evolving. In this collection, chains, one of the company’s iconic jewels, are made in all shapes, sizes and colours”. Experimentation is a fundamental element. “The goldsmith tradition we embody is very ancient, even prior to the Etruscan civilization. Experimentation in materials, finishes and colors has always been part of this profession.”

The chain, one of the most iconic UNOAERRE jewels

UNOAERRE offers the city of Arezzo and Italy an incomparable cultural wealth: the company’s Museum, founded in 1988 with the aim of enhancing its historical heritage. Today, here are exposed creations by artists such as Giò Pomodoro, Bino Bini, Orlando Orlandini, Francesco Messina, Emilio Greco and many more other talents with whom UNOAERRE has collaborated since the ‘60s. Thus, the Museum tells about the evolution of Italian costume to the whole world. “Even before the pandemic – explains Maria Cristina Squarcialupi – the Museum had to be included in a tourist route linked to the city and the province of Arezzo. Furthermore, UNOAERRE exhibits several historical pieces also at the Oro d’Autore collection, at the Museo dell’Oro della Fraternità dei Laici. The collection has been acquired by Tuscany Region recently and it will be part of a wider regional tourist route. We are very proud of it.”

Medals of love, UNOAERRE Museum

The company is also very attentive to communication. “Today, communication should be omnichannel, and this is the path we have taken in recent years. The pandemic has accelerated a direction we had already chosen: the creation of our e-commerce. In the future, we will continue to invest in communication by diversifying in terms of channels: we are going to range from tv and the traditional press to social media. The goal, in any channel, is to convey UNOAERRE’s values and its history. A history of over 90 years which will soon become 100. “Yes! We are approaching to this goal with important steps. We will be ready with a new publication and new collections inspired by 100 years of our reality.”

Detail of a necklace, Etruscan inspiration, UNOAERRE Museum

Thank you Maria Cristina for having accompanied me to discover the reality of UNOAERRE and for the commitment in spreading culture, that is the most important thing to us. Only culture will allow us to always remember who we are, what our past is, and how bright our future will be.