Vogue Biography: Roberto Cavalli

A king of excess, Roberto Cavalli showed his first collection of printed leather gowns in 1970 and has since built a desirable lifestyle empire. Exotic elegance, wild prints and bohemian glamour are inherent in every collection and his seductive cuts have provided everyone from Jennifer Lopez to Victoria Beckham with red-carpet drama.

 

 

 

Sexing-up denim in the Noughties with his youth line, Just Cavalli, Roberto is a designer of both substance and style, as he has made cutting-edge developments in textile technology throughout his career.

Often seen surrounded by beautiful women, Cavalli’s lavish lifestyle may lead people to consider him as an archetypical Italian lothario, however the designer has been happily married for over 30 years. His extravagant Tuscan estate (complete with pools and a vineyard), stable of racehorses (the jockeys wear leopard-print Cavalli silks) and a vast collection of toys (Ferraris, a helicopter and a 138-foot, iridescent purple yacht), do however ensure that he is the embodiment of the extravagance that he sells.

  • Roberto Cavalli was born on November 15 1940 in Florence, Italy. Artistic talent ran in the family as his grandfather was a celebrated Impressionist painter and his mother a seamstress. He stuttered as a child, which as he would later tell Colin McDowell was cured by a surge in confidence and a new-found fascination with girls.
  • While studying at the Academy of Art in Florence in 1957, Cavalli decided not to become an artist, instead experimenting by applying painterly techniques to textiles in ways that had not been practised before. “My dream, maybe because of my family, was to be a painter. I chose in one moment the direction of textiles; from textiles I went to fashion,” he later reflected.

Read the full article for British Vogue online here…

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