Elio Fiorucci dies aged 80

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Fashion designer Elio Fiorucci died today from sudden illness at his home in Milan, aged 80 years old.

Founder of the namesake brand Fiorucci, the designer is known for bringing the offbeat style of London’s eccentric Carnaby Street to Milan in 1967. Fiorucci’s ready-to-wear line opened in 1970, making his designs affordable to the masses. The brand popularised stretch denim jeans, defining 1970’s and 80’s youth fashion.

A good friend of Andy Warhol, Keith Haring and Madonna, Fiorucci kept close ties with the pop culture of this twenty-year period. His team organised the grand opening of NYC nightclub Studio 54 in 1977. In 1984, Haring decorated the brand’s flagship Milan store, adding to its publicity. Stores opened up in other fashion capitals, including London and New York.

In 1990, he his company Fiorucci SpA to Japanese owners Edwin Co. Ltd., and founded the label Love Therapy in 2003, which is still popular today.

“I’ve always been apolitical, a great lover of freedom of thought,” Fiorucci told ANSA ahead of his 80th birthday, “…I was lucky to live during a fascinating period such as the 1960s… a moment of great social change, when young people were thinking of liberty, of peace,” he continued, “That’s when I realised the need to express myself freely, without political ties to the right or left.”

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Written by Katherine Beckwith

Katherine is a History of Art student with a keen interest in the history of fashion. Having a previous artistic education, Katherine also has a watchful eye for the emerging trends in modern fashion.

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