Born in 1881, craftsman’s son Guccio Gucci founded the House of Gucci as a saddlery shop in Florence in 1906. Guccio's first talent was his craftsmanship in leather goods. He started out selling leather bags to horsemen in the 1920’s and progressed to luxury luggage as his clients graduated from equine transportation to horseless carriages. In 1938 Guccio Gucci opened their first retail shop on the Via Condotti in Rome.
In 1947 the immediately recognizable Gucci icon, the leather bag with bamboo handle, is created. During the 1950’s the trademark red striped webbing is introduced, taken from its original form place on a saddle girth. This became an emblem much as the leather moccasin with leather bit. Guccio Gucci created many of his classics early during the 1950’s; products such as luggage, ties, shoes, and the famous handbags sporting the bamboo handle. After his death in 1953, his family was able to take the enormously successful company to new heights by opening stores in Paris, Beverly Hills, London, Palm Beach, and Tokyo. The 1960’s brought increased fame to the Gucci Empire. Such Hollywood stars as Grace Kelly, Peter Sellers and Audrey Hepburn made the name Gucci synonymous with “chic”. Jackie Kennedy helped by being photographed with the Gucci shoulder bag, which subsequently became known as the “Jackie O”. The company adopts the “GG” logo.
Company founded: 1906
Based in: Florence
Men's lines: None
Selected awards: VH1/Vogue Best New Designer (1995) and Designer of the Year (1996), CFDA International Designer of the Year (1996), Elle Style Awards' Style Icon Award (2000), British GQ International Man of the Year Award (2000), Time's Best Fashion Designer (2001), GQ Designer of the Year (2001), First Annual Fashion Design Achievement Award at the Cooper Hewitt Design Museum's National Design Awards (2003)
Signature quote: "I wanted these men to smell, wear, and breathe something else. Go somewhere where they could listen to music, sleep, take time with friends, wear crocodile, and jump in the ocean. That's the ultimate in luxury. Friends, crocodile, and the ocean: It's a triple luxe." —John Ray
Worn by: Ben Affleck, Ashton Kutcher, Usher, P. Diddy, Ewan McGregor, and Jude Law.