Written by Paul G Roberts


  • Armani
  • Prada
  • Missoni
  • Elsa Schiaparelli
  • Valentino
  • Versace

In the 1960’s scores of international jet set dress buyers and status seekers flocked to Rome, as much for the couture designs of Valentino and Roberto Carpucci as for the search of La Dolce Vita. The jewelled island of Capri was their playground. Florence was famous for leather goods and gold, and it didn’t hurt Florentine fortunes that Pucci and Ferragamo were Jet set must haves. In the 1970’s fashion heralded the arrival of ready-to-wear and the demand for practical masculine styled clothing that women could wear to work and Milan rose to power as Italy’s fashion epicentre.


In the last century, Italian movies, which have had a great influence on Hollywood, showed what sensual style meant to Italians through famous images of Sophia Loren and later, Monica Belluci in movies like Malena. The look was well tailored, respectable, and sensual at the same time. To these iconic images have been added the style statements of the likes of Prada, Pucci, Gucci, Versace and Valentino, who have taken Italian style in an entirely different, over-the-top direction.