Gucci is an Italian fashion and leather goods brand owned by the French holding-company Kering,and part of the Gucci-Group. Having since taken the fashion world by storm since it was founded, this article takes an in depth look into the history of Gucci with a view to provide information regarding its journey towards fashion dominance.
Gucci was founded in a small shop in Florence, Italy in the early 1920s by Gucci Gucci. The founder was a hotelier who migrated to Paris and later to London. While working in hotels across London, particularly The Savoy Hotel, Mr. Gucci was impressed with the affluent luggage he saw with guests, and this is where he drew his inspiration to delve into the fashion world. He started by selling leather bags to horse-men, before graduating into luxury luggage upon the emergence of horse-less carriages as well as non-equine transport. His skills in knitwear and craftsmanship easily kicked in and in no time, he, along with his sons expanded their business by opening up more stores in Florence as well as spreading over to Rome and Milan.
Gucci History in Pre-world war II
Between the years 1935-1936, Gucci found alternatives to import leather and other materials, due to a League of Nations Embargo against Italy. This period saw Gucci develop a canapa specially woven from Naples and printed with the first signature print, and from which its first successful suitcases would be made.
During the War Years
Even though Gucci faced scant foreign supplies during the years of Italy’s fascist dictatorship, the ingenuity of the founder gave him alternatives to raw materials in the form of jute, linen and hemp. Now that many of his local clients were horse-riding aristocrats, Gucci would later again take equestrian inspiration so as to satisfy their demand for riding gear. One of the trademarks he created was the red and green Web-stripe derived from the traditional colors of saddle girth-strap.
After Gucci died in 1953, his sons took over the business and began expanding it throughout the world. Gucci’s global outlook attracted attention from unfamiliar quarters, with Princess Kelly of Monaco making a personal request for the printing of the famous Gucci scarf, Flora.
The Post-war History
After the end of World War II, leather goods began to be produced again, with one of Gucci’s sons Aldo Gucci introducing the pigskin. Production of the first bamboo handled bag would also characterize this period. The company then kept expanding through the 1970s to various parts of the world, particularly The U.S, Europe and The Far East.
In recent years, Gucci has seen tremendous transformations especially in its managerial structure. One of such being the appointment of Tom Ford, an American Designer as the creative director in 1994. Another notable breakthrough in the company’s structure and development was the signing of a long term licensing agreement with P & G in 2006 for the production as well as world-wide distribution of its fragrances.
Having braced the challenges of the market for nearly a century now Gucci remains a leader in building catalogs of genuinely iconic trademarks. The interlocking G.G logo, the shiny velvet pan-tsuit, the bamboo-handled hand-bag, the bar-and-bit belt buckle and the omnipresent penny-loafer are just some of these trademarks.