BeUNICO is an online boutique that shares the beauty of Italy through an enhanced shopping platform. Our inspired collections feature the most authentic and historic, to new and emerging artists and designers who manufacture quality Italian goods.
Distinguished by attention to detail and an unparalleled level of service, our goal is to be the first Italian e-commerce platform to deliver unique and high-quality handcrafted fashion and designer goods to those who love and live with attention to detail and quality.
We aspire to connect people and ideas through features and stories of artisans and the history of craftsmanship and Italian traditions passed down through generations. Interviews, photographs, and videos enrich the overall customer shopping experience and demonstrate the excellence of each unique collection.
BeUNICO brings you closer to the unique world of Made in Italy.
… What we think
The difference between us and the big chain or big e-commerce sites is, they have discount after discount and more discounts, and it seems they don’t want you to buy a good product, they just want you to buy it.
What we like, and work for, is that you get something that lasts forever, until you are tire of it, and may resell it. A product that you know where it has come from, something that has all the attention from the creator, knowledge, and heritage passed down from centuries and has his vibration, almost a piece of the soul of these people, and this beautiful land.
… A little of my story
My name is Domenico Apollaro, I'm the founder of BeUNICO. I grew up in a small village in South Italy called Sibari. When I was a young boy, my family lived in an apartment building where there was a very sweet old lady called Zia Fortuna which means lucky. She could not walk very well from a problem she had when she was a child but I remember that she was always doing something. She worked to tailor all kinds of clothes for all of her family, and for me too. She worked with fabrics of all kinds like lace for bedding, tablecloths, and bath linens and they were beautiful. All my neighbors would go to Zia Fortuna when they needed to fix something or needed something for a special event that they were going to. I always appreciated her skill, and capability to create almost anything asked of her. To me, she was an artist and inspired me to learn all I can from the local artisans in my village.
As I grew older, I started to work in order to help my family, and go to school. I was 12 when I started working in a gelateria bar in the summer. Always by the side of a 60-year-old gelato maestro, I learned to make gelato. A very thin, tiny man I was almost taller than him but always looked up to him. All summer I would listen to his stories and grew admiration for his knowledge and expertise. As winter approached he would go to work as a craftsman of artistic ceramic and I returned to school while continuing to explore the craft of artisans around me.
After many years spent studying and working, I become a Chef and restaurant owner. As I traveled throughout the various regions of Italy for work, I realized my true passion for unique and handcrafted items created in my country. My travels allowed me to develop many connections with artists, artisans, and designers during this time and I fell in love with their stories, expertise, and boundless creativity which sparked an entrepreneur’s spirit within myself.
…Everybody has a dream
Landing in the United States, in 2013 I opened one more restaurant, found love and married a beautiful American woman. Fulfilling my dreams, but still missing the opportunities to work with Italy’s artisans and artists, I decided to create a way to bring those experiences to my new homeland and incorporate these traditions back into my lifestyle. My dream was to build an e-commerce experience based on inspiration from the history of Italy’s own unique artisan traditions and creations I grew up admiring. The selection of products comes from my desire to explore and share the most exclusive, entirely Made in Italy brands characterized by excellent workmanship and design. My dream is to promote the connections with passionate artisans and designers from Italy that inspire a truly unique lifestyle. BeUNICO is my way to share it with you.
I believe that innovation comes from understanding the past, and I strongly believe that the new frontier of Italian excellence is in the hands of the new generation.
BeUnico has a mission to preserve the traditions and carry on the skills of craftsmanship. We're happy do announce that part of our income will go to support Creative Minds International Public Charter School located in Washington DC. The school offers students a rigorous education plan that provides them with the skills required for successful participation in a global society, a highly-engaging program based on an international, project- and arts-based curriculum that includes foreign language instruction as well as standards-based literacy and mathematics. We strogly believe in their goals and the ways they try to accomplish them.
"Without craftsmanship, inspiration is a mere reed shaken in the wind.”
- Johannes Brahms-
“Don’t be into trends. Don’t make fashion own you, but you decide what you are, what you want to express by the way you dress and the way you live.”