Every time that Portos saw a Vespa go by he thought: “There’s soul in that metal.” We are in Pontedera, in Tuscany in the 1950s: Portos was taken on at Piaggio, chosen from among the many candidates by expert engineers who saw that he had the right talents. The Vespa got Italy on the move, and Portos had a hand in bringing to life the most famous scooter in the world. Then came the 1960s, the boom years, and during the general ferment Portos decided to leave Piaggio and set up a business with some friends, creating an artisans’ workshop making brass objects and accessories for furniture companies.
Then one day he accepted the challenge that was to change his life: making a made-to-measure bed. The project was too complicated for his partners; they thought it was not worth wasting time over so Portos decided to continue on his way alone and to have a go. When the bed was finished, he had great pleasure in putting his signature on it: Giusti Portos. The Tuscan surname and the romantic name came together to create a unique and recognisable trademark. And so this was the beginning of a workshop specialised in creating hand-crafted beauty using iron and fire. At his side to help him and share his new adventure was the fourteen-year-old son of a blacksmith friend of his, who is today the master forger for Giusti Portos. Giusti Portos’s skilled craftsmanship quickly started to become appreciated and recognised, first of all at local fairs, then at increasingly important events, until it gained national fame, supported by a solid sales network.
The story of Giusti Portos goes on. Today the company is run by Portos’ son Marco, while the founder is still there, keeping a fatherly eye on the work and the style that he created and felt so close to as to christen it with his own name: Giusti Portos.The first workshop was a small shop where the iron was heated by the fire in the forge and hand-wrought by Portos. The forge of a true master craftsman which today has become a company which carries out all the production phases itself, never making mass-produced items. And the spirit has remained the same as at the very beginning: there is still the pleasure of being able to follow every piece from the start to the finish like a handcrafted not an industrial product, to see the devotion to paying more attention to the details than the quantity, the pride in only offering unique items, each one different because it is handmade using the ancient art of forging iron. Today Giusti Portos’ production has expanded: alongside the forged beds there are now iron, brass and wooden beds, and a line of accessories, creating a collection with the classic taste of a growing and blossoming tradition.
Forging is at the heart of Giusti Portos’ work. The methods and techniques are strictly artisan and are highlighted when the anvil skilfully encounters the hammer. The heat of the fire joins with the “heat” of the handcrafting to create totally unique pieces which are never the same as the rest, with a wealth of beauty and the quality craftsmanship of times past. The skill of the forgers combines with the designers’ aesthetic research: resulting in Giusti Portos’ unrepeatable “works of art”. The workmanship is based on traditional skilled handcrafting. From forging and welding the iron, and carving the wood to brushing the brass. And every design is exclusive to Giusti Portos: the shape that the wrought iron assumes on the anvil, the fusion of the brass, the carving of the wood… Traditional techniques are also used for the finishes: for example in the application of precious gold and silver leaf. And to close this cycle of craftsmanship, decorations and antique finishes carried out with paintbrushes or pads: numerous types of finish can be chosen for the iron and wood which just like the floral paintings are carried out completely by hand. Giusti Portos’ passion for beauty also means love for the environment, which in practice means using natural materials such as earth and vegetable glues and water-based colours in accordance with our precise ecological convictions. This is how every piece in the Giusti Portos collections comes into being: from the impassioned encounter of the love of tradition, craftsmen’s know-how and respect for the environment.