Gucci was founded in Florence, Italy in 1921. Established by Guccio Gucci who was inspired by his time as a porter at the Savoy Hotel, this Italian fashion house began its history producing luxury travel goods and equestrian equipment for the Italian elite with the very finest Italian leathers.
Although launching with leather goods, knitwear, silk garments, shoes and handbags soon followed. Guccio enlisted his three sons to help with the business in 1938, just before the devastating onslaught of World War Two. It was during this wartime period, however, that some of Gucci’s most iconic design features were born.
A shortage of supplies and sanctions against Italy forced the team to search for inventive and unique ways to create their pieces. The now iconic ‘double G’ Gucci monogram was created as a condensed brand logo, and the green and red Gucci stripe motifs were introduced using a canvas material often seen in the equestrian sphere. Significantly, the bamboo bag was also bought to life during this time, with the designers realising that they could fashion Japanese bamboo into unique and interesting bag handles. Soon, the bamboo handle bag became synonymous with Gucci.
In 1953, Guvvio Gucci passed away and his sons Aldo, Vasco and Rodolfo took over the business. Jewellery and watches were introduced to the brand in the mid 1960s and these categories remain amongst the most important within the Gucci fashion house.
Celebrity influence in the 1950s and 60s really helped to propel the brand into the mainstream, with Elizabeth Taylor, Jackie Kennedy and many others sporting Gucci pieces. In 1981 the brand debuted their first ready-to-wear collection, but it wasn’t until the 1990s with the introduction of Tom Ford as the Creative Director that the brand regained and far surpassed its mid 20th century success.
Current Creative Director Alessandro Michele took his position in 2015 after working with the company for over twelve years, and has since bought an opulence, imagination and maximalism to the brand that ensures its continued appeal.
Both current and vintage Gucci pieces sell exceptionally well at auction, with private collections reaching top prices from eager collectors and bidders. Our specialist Designer Fashion auctions are held 4 times a year and include handbags, clothing, shoes, scarves, purses and accessories. Our department is headed by Liz Bailey. We offer a free valuation service as well as a free collection service for items consigned to these auctions.
Contact our qualified specialist Liz Bailey to find out more.
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