Giorgio Armani's Fashion Evolution
Originally a window dresser, Giorgio Armani has built up one of the biggest fashion empires across the globe. There’s his namesake mainline, then streetwear by Emporio Armani, the breathtakingly chic and almost futuristic Armani Prive haute couture. Plus the numerous franchise lines in department stores around the world, plus hotels, restaurants and most recently, the Italian Olympic team uniform.
He had an upbringing he described as hard, growing up during the Second World War in small-town Italy near Milan. He and his siblings favourite escape route was the cinema, which fellow Italian, Valentino, also cites as his earliest inspiration. Several years studying medicine was followed by military service and then a time working in a department store. He became hooked on fashion, and went full-time, before earning his living as a freelance designer.
Together with friend and business partner, Sergio Galeotti he set up a menswear brand closely followed by womenswear. His designs were popular in the USA, following movie exposure, such as Richard Gere wearing Armani in American Gigolo. The 1980’s were a time of brilliant growth for the company.
Since this time Armani have expanded into many other lines, cosmetics, hotels, homewear and more. The brands have been worn on the red carpet by everyone from Lady Gaga to Kate Beckinsale, Lana Del Rey, Jodie Foster and Michelle Pfeiffer.