12 Most Influential Luxury Fashion Brands from Italy – Italy, a country that has a long history and a very strong influence in the fashion world. Cities in the region of Italy, especially Milan, Florence, and Rome became the fashion mecca that gained spotlight from many fashion enthusiasts all over the world. Milan Fashion Week, which is held annually always anticipated fashion observers and confirms Italy as a country that has a very strong tradition of fashion.
The presence of Italian luxury fashion brands such as Gucci, Prada, Armani or Versace that have become a fashion icon and trendsetter admired throughout the world. Italian fashion brands that have distinctive characteristics and each character is influenced by the notable designers. Call it Prada which has nylon fabrics as its signature, Emilio Pucci with abstract motifs on silk fabrics as their characteristics or Botega Venetta with its intreccatio.
You can buy the Italian luxury fashion brands by visiting their boutiques or flagship store located in Italy or other countries.
1) Italian Fashion Brands – Gucci
The experience of living and working in London has made Guccio Gucci inspired to create quality products of fashion that reflects Tuscan artists’ craftmanship. When became an imigran in Paris and then London, he witnessed and was impressed with guests carrying a suitcase which was very luxurious. He went back to his native Italy and opened the first luggage shop in Florence in the 1920’s.
Only a few years, his private label was able to attract the attention of the upper class not to mention the aristocrats who likes horse riding. Gucci is encouraged to develop products for horse riding like bags, shoes, belts and gloves. The products are intended for horse riding enthusiast as a symbol of the fashion house that emphasizes on innovation and high aesthetic standards in every of its product design.
During the World War II during fascist dictator in power, good leather materials is very difficult to find. It did not strict Gucci’s capability in producing excellence goods. One of the most monumental innovations, namely the discovery of a Gucci Bamboo handle bag that was made of heated bamboo rods. Shortly after the discovery, Bamboo bag became one of the iconic Gucci products that are most sought-after and collectible.
2) Italian Fashion Brands – Armani
The journey in finding the right career path for Giorgio Armani is fairly full of twists. He studied medicine but not completed, then he joined the army and stationed at a military hospital. Having left the army, Giorgio Armani decided to work in a department store in the city of Milan as a window dresser. While working at the store that he learned more about the world of fashion and marketing.
Armani’s knowledge in the field of fashion grew, when he joined the company owned by Nino Cerruti and become a clothing designer. In addition, he also became the designer of menswear and contributed to the fashion house such as Hilton, Siccons, Allegri, and Bagutta. The contribution in some fashion houses provided an opportunity for Giorgio Armani to display his designs in the runway show in Florence. The international press also began to recognize the figure of Giorgio Armani as a fashion designer to be reckoned with.
The plentiful experiences that he gained years after years compelled Armani to create his own fashion label. And, finally, in 1975, Giorgio Armani founded Giorgio Armani S.p.A in Milan that displays a collection of ready-to-wear collection for Spring Summer 1976 with his own label. Nowaday, his fashion label has grown rapidly and has product lines such as Armani Junior, Armani Exchange, Armani Jeans, Armani Beauty, and Emporio Armany.
3) Italian Fashion Brands – Versace
Gianni Versace was raised in a very condusive environments. Through her mother, who had a dressmaking business, he learned a lot about fashion and worked for her after graduted from high school. In 1972, he moved to Milan and started freelance designing for famous Italian labels such as Genny, Calaghan, and Complice.
The first Versace boutique was established in 1978 and marked the birth of Italian luxury fashion brand that became known throughout the world. Versace featuring Medusa as a logo taken from ancient Greek mythology and became his trade mark. The latest Versace collections include haute couuture, prêt-à-porter, accessories, perfume jewelry, eyewear, accessories to home furnishings.
Versace is known for a very luxurious style, bold design, the use of innovative and unusual materials. One of innovation by Versace that gained attention from the public, namely black dress worn by famous artist Elizabeth Hurley in 1994. Some of the artists and other famous figures who ever wore Versace’s collection are Elton John, Michael Jackson, Princess of Wales, Princess Caroline of Monaco. After his demise, the legacy passed on by his family with Donatella Versace as Creative Director.
4) Italian Fashion Brands – Dolce & Gabbana
In 1980, Domenico Dolce started his career in a fashion house as an assistant designer after he took a course in fashion design. Since then, he met with Stefano Gabbana who later joined the the fashion house where Dolce had been working in advance. Both, then work together to make sketch dan draft of design in the fashion house and have a match with one another. Finally, in 1982, Dolce and Gabbana decided to create fashion label by using their names and set up their own studio in Milan.
Initially, Dolce & Gabbana had been designing various kinds of clothing on a freelance basis for other fashion in the early 1980’s. In 1985, they were selected as the designer who won a invaluable opportunity to showcase their collection at the Milano Collezioni – “New Talents”. The first runway debut was certainly not wasted by them and become opportunity to show the design to fashion enthusiasts.
The following year, they launched a collection titled “Real Women” and produced by their selves. The first fashion boutique Dolce & Gabbana opened in Via Santa Cecilia, Milan in 1987. Dolce & Gabbana who has a unique and sensual style and continues to expand its collections producing lingerie, beachwear, and a men’s collection. Expansion into international markets starts by participating the fashion show in Tokyo in 1989 and opened a boutique in New York in 1990. Some of Hollywood’s biggest artists who wore Dolce & Gabbana collections are Madonna, Kylie Minogue, Isabella Rossellini, and Monica Belluci.
5) Italian Fashion Brands – Fendi
Fendi is fur. Such phrase seems appropriate to describe the Italian fashion brand that was established by a husband and wife, Edoardo and Adele Fendi. The fashion brand has been launched since 1925, precisely when Edoardo and Adele Fendi opened a fur boutique with in-house workshop in Via del Plebiscito, in the center of Rome. Furthermore, the Fendi family business and legacy passed on by the next generation, namely Paola, Carla, Anna, France, and Alda.
German fashion designer Karl Lagerfeld joined Fendi in 1969 and became an integral part of the brand and provides many significant contributions. Fendi logo with inverted “FF” letters is Karl Lagerfeld’s designs which are then associated as a luxury Italian fashion brand. Through his skilled hand, Karl Lagerfeld is able to change the fur that is stiff and heavy to be material that is soft and can be used as part of the Fendi fashion products.
Craftmanship and innovations developed by the designers has made Fendi became a fashion icon impressive luxury and much admired. Baguette bag and Spy bag is an example of Fendi collections coveted by fashion enthusiasts. Fendi gained attention from international public when becoming the first fashion house held a fashion show on the Great Wall of China.
6) Italian Fashion Brands – Bottega Veneta
Bottega Venetta founded by Michele Taddei and Renzo Zengiaro in 1966 known as the woven leather design. Even the design of woven leather as the exterior on most of their product called intreccatio is synonymous with the brand Bottega Venetta. The first Bottega Venetta atelier is opened in the city of Vicenza, Italy representing traditional craftmanship and items made from luxurious leather.
In the 1970s, Bottega launched advertising campaigns with its famous tagline “When your own initials are enough”. The motto reflects philosophy of individuality and confidence that is applied through a range of products such as ready-to-wear clothing for men and women, jewelry, luggage , handbag, perfume and furniture.
The year of 2001 is an important moment for Bottega Venetta when Kering acquired the company and recruited Tomas Maier as Creative Director. In his tenure, Tomas Maier returns brand Bottega Venetta to its original identity and exclude the logo on its products. Bottega’s boutiques spread across several countries with a room designed exclusively and provide comfort and privacy for customers.
7) Italian Fashion Brands – Roberto Cavalli
Raised and grow in an environment full of art, Roberto Cavalli developed into a fashion designer who reckoned not only in his native Italy but also the world. His father was a famous Impressionist painter and gave influence to the aesthetic development of Roberto Cavalli. To deepen the arts, he studied at the Florence Academy of Fine Arts and focuses on the print textile.
Italian fashion designer Roberto Cavalli is known for his creations which feature a blend of leather print and the use of animal patterns and patches. He showed his first collections at the Salon for Prêt-à-Porter in Paris and opened his first boutique in Saint-Tropez in 1972. His name was getting fame when several artists such as Sophia Loren and Brigitte Bardot wearing his dress designs.
In 1998, Roberto Cavalli launched Just Cavalli featuring the leather garments and patterned fabrics that are intended for young people. Roberto Cavalli’s unique and innovative design represent his skills in processing a wide range of materials such as leather, denim, and feather. The latest collection includes Roberto Cavalli women’s dress, shoes, t-shirts, sweaters, jackets, coats, bags, and shoes.
8) Italian Fashion Brands – Prada
A long history as an Italian luxury fashion brand Prada began in 1913 when Mario Prada opened its first exclusive boutique in the Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II, Milan. Initially, the boutique sells leather bags, trunks and accessories. Prada became a fashion brand that is favored by the aristocrats, after getting the “Official Supplier to the Italian Royal Household” in 1919. The honor was made Prada has the right to incorporate the heraldic emblem of the House of Savoy’s and knitted rope design on the logo.
High craftsmanship combined with the selection of high-quality materials make Prada established itself as an upscale fashion brand that became a symbol of social satus. For example the use of special nylon fabric types that are as expensive as silk and become patented materials. This type of fabric is applied to a variety of product lines found after going through various research and development that have become an icon and fashion trends.
Miuccia Prada became the successor Prada inherited from her mother Luissa Prada in 1978 and launched its first collection of tote and backpack a year later. In 1983, Prada opened a new boutique in Via della Spiga, Milan with a combination of traditional and modern architectural design. The boutique displays a pale green color which became a symbol of Prada stores worldwide.
9) Italian Fashion Brands – Salvatore Ferragamo
Salvatore Ferragamo’s talents, born in Bonito, Italy, has been honed since childhood when he made a pair of shoes for the first time for his sister at the age of nine. His move to the United States, specifically in the town of Santa Barbara, California in 1919, started his career as a shoemaker for Hollywood actress. Continuing success when opening the boot shoe store in Santa Barbara, he opened his new shoe store named “Hollywood Boot Shop” in Hollywood in 1923.
Having spent some time in the United States, Salvatore Ferragamo decided to move to his home country, Italy. In 1927, Salvatore Ferragamo founded the company in Florence that focuses on manufacturing and marketing of women’s shoes. One of the famous Salvatore Ferragamo creations namely cork wedge heel shoes for famous artists Judy Garland named “The Rainbow”.
Other collections are also very iconic ballerina shoe designed for a popular artist Audrey Hepburn in 1954. Salvatore Ferragamo opened his first store in the city of Rome and Florence (Italy) and London (UK) in 1938. Subsequently, the Salvatore Ferragamo boutiques spread internationally in some most recognizable cities such as New York, Hong Kong, Shanghai, Dubai, Seoul, and others.
10) Italian Fashion Brands – Emilio Pucci
Emilio Pucci career in the world of fashion may be unpredictable when the skiwear which he designed in 1947 spotted by fashion photographer of Harper’s Bazaar. The revolutionary skiwear design results intended for his friend appeared in the popular magazine Harper’s Bazaar USA and gained the attention of fashion enthusiasts.
He opened his first haute couture house in a luxury resort La Canzone del Mare, on the Isles of Capri. The beauty of the island is translated into clothes designs with vibrant colors and geometric motifs. In the 1950’s, he discovered his print signature featuring abstract graphics inspired by the beauty of the Mediterranean and the places he had visited. Many of Emilio Pucci’s designs feature prints on silk fabrics that made him crowned the title of “Prince of Print” by international press.
Italian fashion brand Emilio Pucci obtain a higher status when several famous performers wearing his clothing design. Some of them are Marilyn Monroe, Madonna, Sharon Stone, Sophia Loren and Jackie Kennedy. The fashion house manufacture of clothing ready-to-wear and accessories for women and men’s collection with a wide variety.
11) Italian Fashion Brands – Bulgari
Sotirios Boulgaris began his career as a talented blacksmith in a small village in Greece. His move to Italy was an attempt to develop his business and he opened his first jewelry store in the city of Rome in 1884. Along with his business growing, he opened a flagship store in Via dei Condotti, Rome in 1905 with the help of his two children. The shop was named “Old Curiosity Shop” to attract American and British tourists who visit the city of Rome.
In the 1950’s, the Italian luxury fashion brand has gained prominence among the elite when famous personalities like Elizabeth Taylor and Audrey Hepburn wore Bulgari jewelery. Bulgari jewelry designs that feature bright colors soon have a place among the local bourgeois and upper classes internationally. Bulgari logo written with the Latin alphabet ‘V’ is a form of tribute to the company’s history is rooted in Rome.
In 1970’s Bulgari started international expansion by opening its first boutique in New York and followed by Paris, Geneva and Monte Carlo. Bulgari develop its product line by producing watches and one of the most iconic namely ∙ BVLGARI BVLGARI launched in 1977. Subsequently, in 1992, Bulgari diversify the line by launching a perfume with Parfumée Eau au Thé Vert as his first collection.
12) Italian Fashion Brands – Valentino
Valentino Garavani’s passion to the world of fashion has started since he was a teenager and studied at the Ecole des Beaux- Arts and at the Chambre Syndicale de la Couture Parisienne to deepen his knowledge. He moved to Paris to pursue his dreams and became an apprentice in Jaques Fath, Balenciaga, Jean Desses and Guy Laroche. His experience of apprenticeship in the renowned fashion house is the propelling start into a real fashion career for Valentino.
Pitti Palace Fashion Show in Florence in 1962 became the first debut of Valentino featuring a collection with soft colors like white, cream, and beige. Valentino collection was attracting the interest of foreign buyers and a turning point in his glorious career. A few years later, Valentino launched the White Collection, which displays the logo with the letter ‘V’ for the first time and became the trade mark logo to be applied to a wide range of collection.
During his career of more than 40 years, Valentino had been producing many dresses ever worn by famous celebrities. The celebrities who collected Valentino’s designs eg Julia Roberts, Jennifer deliveryman, Claudia Schiffer, Jennifer Aniston, Jacqueline Kennedy Onasis, Naomi Watts, and many more. Valentino’s collections include haute couture, pret-a-porter, accessories to perfumes that can be purchased at its boutiques spread across several countries.
Italian luxury fashion brands have always been the center of attention for its innovative and distinctive collections. No wonder, every fashionista all over the world want to collect them. (allhighfashion)