A true innovator, Giorgio Armani is often the forerunner of modern trends in fashion. He knows how to provoke the audience and take risks that rake huge payoffs. But behind the glamor and extravagance around him, Armani maintains his distance from the public eye. One would even go as far as to call him shy or aloof. When most fashion designers bare their lives for all to see, this Italian-born seems to have a good control over his private affairs.
As famous as the A-list celebrities he often dresses (Beyoncé, Leonardo DiCaprio, Cate Blanchett), Giorgio Armani’s name is well-recognized all over the world. Despite the many details of his life he prefers to keep in secret, here’s what we know about him and the empire he built from scratch:
He Could Have Been A Doctor
On July 11, 1934, Giorgio was born as the middle child of Ugo Armani and Maria Raimondi in the Italian town of Piacenza. His father grew up in a humble background and worked as a shipping manager. From an early age, Giorgio was fascinated with human anatomy. This inspired him to pursue a medical profession. After high school, he enrolled in the Department of Medicine at the University of Milan. However, he dropped out after three years to enlist in the military in 1953.
There were early appearances of his talent during his childhood. His interest in theater led him to improvise plays at their home, often with his brother Sergio. Armani used rags to make garments for the dolls. However, his fashion design prowess doesn’t become notable until his 40s.
Starting His Independent Career At 40
Discharged from the army with nothing to his name, Giorgio found a job as a window dresser in a department store in Milan. He then worked as a salesman of menswear for seven years, which helped him learn the ins and outs of marketing and fashion design.
In the mid-1960s, Giorgio joined the Nino Cerruti fashion house as a menswear designer. At the same time, he also started sending his designs to various other garment manufacturers, such as Gibo, Hilton, and Allegri. In the same decade, he met Sergio Galeotti, an architectural draftsman, with whom he would establish a long-term professional and personal relationship. Galeotti enthused him to believe in what he was doing, which sparked his drive to create his own brand.
The duo sold their old car to gain money for the foundation of the Giorgio Armani S.p.A. in Milan in 1975. Armani created clothes from top to bottom and Galeotti became in-charged of selling them to department stores. Working with insufficient funds, the budding fashion designer had to paint the dots on the fabric as he could not afford to buy fabric with the pattern.
Italy experienced a difficult economic time throughout the 70s. In spite of that, the label presented its first collection of a modest number of men’s and women’s clothing. This feat turned out to be a huge success, raking vast sales at the largest US department store Barney’s.
Innovating Classic Designs
Armani doesn’t see the point in releasing new collections every season and believes that fashion shouldn’t race at such as fast pace. Nevertheless, he always makes it a point to offer fresh designs his fans are sure to obsess over for years.
Men’s and women’s jackets, as we know them today, are the product of Armani’s constant innovation. His desire to create comfort and ease in the wardrobe of the modern working individual resulted in some of the most iconic jacket designs in history. He fused materials, removed unnecessary padding, and searched for the finest fabrics the world can offer.
His style is often described as clean and simple that one may think it’s bordering minimalism. Yet it is not. There is always an element of sensuality and playfulness in his designs, but they are never vulgar. Armani’s philosophy revolves around softness, balance, and an aesthetic both men and women can appreciate.
There used to be a boring perception of the classic suit since it is often worn as a uniform. However, Armani recreates this piece of clothing in more variations than one can imagine. One of the most popular movies to demonstrate this is the “American Gigolo,” which feature remarkable styles from the label.
A Separate Brand For Each Product Line
After Armani’s appearance on the fashion scene became the talk of the town in the late 70s and early 80s, his line expanded to offer not only clothes but also other items. With his own concept of beauty and fashion, he created elegant and fashionable products that follow the overall direction of the Armani brand.
By the end of the 1990s, the company had over 200 stores worldwide, selling different items under Armani Exchange A/X. Armani Jeans, Emporio Armani, Armani Exchange, and Armani Collezioni with annual sales of more than $2 billion. He continued to grow his brand with home goods, sportswear, makeup, and book publishing. With various sub-brands, Armani wishes to cater to the specific needs of different market segments.
Among The Brand’s Many Firsts
Being a prominent fashion designer, Armani had the power to influence the fashion scene on a global scale. In 2006, he prohibited the participation of size zero models in his fashion shows, encouraging women to be healthy and uniting all designers against anorexia.
Armani was also the first designer to show his collections live online. Back when other fashion houses found it too risky as their creations could be copied in an instant, Armani took the plunge and succeeded to gain the attention of his audience.
Whether it’s dressing Lady Gaga for the Grammys or expanding his empire deep in Dubai and China, Armani is too busy searching for new challenges. Wearing something made by a fashion and culture icon like himself is surely something to be proud of.
Armani Buyers in Scottsdale and Chandler, AZ
Armani’s watches and handbags, with their contemporary and elegant designs, are beacons of sophistication. If you are a proud owner of a timeless piece from this brand and are looking for a buyer in Phoenix, AZ, fill out our online form to get a free market appraisal.
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