Rome is puzzled since days who will make the robe for the successor to Benedict XVI. Two Roman “clergy tailors” are in the race for this prestigious job.
The family Gammarelli, that dresses the Cardinals at the Vatican since 1793, and the younger rival Euroclero, who supplied Josef Ratzinger with robes during his 20 years as a Curial Cardinal, and to whom Benedict has remained loyal in his years as Pope.
Sizes small, medium and large
The tailor shop that receives the order from the Vatican must make three complete Pope robes until the beginning of the conclave – in sizes small, medium and large. Because it is unclear what stature the new Pontiff will have, several vestments must be sewn. As of this writing the story is told in Rome about John XXIII., the “good Pope,”: the full-bodied Italian looked like a “sausage” in his too-tight suit. Before he appeared on the Loggia of St. Peter’s after the “Habemus papam” in 1958, the back seam had to be unstitched. Each Pope robe includes also a hat, cape, sash, cassock, red shoes and a whole lot more.