(1881-1953; Italy) Gucci was born as artisan leather goods and was founded by Guccio Gucci in 1921. It opened for the first time in Florence as a small shop of accessories for riding and travel items, enriched with suitcases, bags and sporting items . Success is found with the sale of items for horse riding, the clamp and the stirrup become the symbol of the company. In ’38 it opens in Rome and becomes a very original brand, since the lack of raw materials, due to the arrival of the war, leads to ingenuity on the materials to be used and so begins to use linen, jute, cork for soles, hemp but and especially bamboo, because they were cheaper materials than leather.
The four sons also took over from 1939: Ugo, Rodolfo, Vasco and Aldo and from the 1950s the logo changed, becoming a wool or cotton ribbon reminiscent of the blue-red-blue or green-red saddle girth -green. Also in that year, exports to America began, as well as to Europe. This is the moment when some of their products become classics, such as the bag with the bamboo handle, the “Flora” scarf, designed for Grace Kelly and the moccasins with the horsebit. Success also comes thanks to the women of the show, including Maria Callas, Jackie Kennedy and Audrey Hepburn, who began to use Gucci items and in these years it was decided to use the double G (Guccio Gucci’s initials) as an ornament for a their fabric, canvas, which is a very resistant hemp used to produce belts, bags and various accessories.
In the 70s the expansion of the brand continued until it became a S.p.a. and the company passes to Rodolfo’s heir, Maurizio. In 1993 he sold all his shareholding and Domenico De Sole and Tom Ford relaunch the brand managing to reconquer the world with a new identity and also adding clothing for men and women.
For many years the ownership of the Italian house has been part of the French PPR group, which operates in the luxury sector (and is the main competitor of LVMH, also French).