Miuccia Prada, 21st century visionary and anti-fashionista

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Miuccia Prada worth 12.4 Billion $ according to Forbes Magazine. She is also the 3rd most rich person in Italy. But what describes Miuccia Prada is her attitude to see beyond the boundaries of luxury. Flashback on the carrier of one of the most influential woman in fashion today.

Miuccia-Prada-fashion

 

Miuccia becomes Prada

 

Prada, the origins

When the Prada brothers, Mario and Martino, founded Prada in 1913 in Milan, no one could guess that 100 years later, Prada would be one of the most influential fashion brands in the world. Mario Prada was a tuff man. He believed that women should not participate in business and for a very longtime, all the family’s women were not connected to the brand.

Prada-Brothers

He developed a solid and promising leather good business. Unfortunately for the co-founder, his son did not have any interest for his father’s business and the only solution was to give the company to Luisa Prada, her sister. She ran the company for almost 20 years and started opening the doors to the women into Prada’s leadership. Her daughter, Miuccia Prada, joined the company in 1970.Miuccia-Prada-Young

Her creative mind was already at work, as she launched the first ever fashion collection of bags made in Pocone, a strong plastic nylon. It was the first water-proof fashion bags.
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In 1977, an important date, Miuccia Prada meets her husband Patrizio Bertelli, an italian man who was also in the leather business. He started giving advices to her, like the advice to stop importing english leather goods and start doing Prada’s own business.

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Patrizio-Bertelli-Miuccia-Prada-met-after-party

 

 

The Miuccia Prada Era

Miuccia Prada get the family business from her mother in 1978. At that time, Prada sales were up to $450.000. With Patrizio Bertelli as Business general manager, she could dedicate her full time and passion for creativity and design. Since then, Prada became one of the most influential fashion houses in the world and a premium status symbol in the 90’s.
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In 1992, Prada launches a new brand MiuMiu, which is Miuccia Prada nickname. This settles for good the importance of Miuccia Prada in the creativity activities around the Prada Brand and group.

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Prada creativity Pygmalion

One of the secrets of Miuccia Prada, is that she is obsessed with the power of an idea. She is definitely one of the most visionary minds in fashion today. She sees connections among different arts at the service of design. For this, she developed several collaborations and brought fashion creation into a different level.

Prada’s collaborations and Joint-Ventures

To develop and support Prada’s different activities, Miuccia Prada joined forces with the best people she could find. So for many activities, she developed with the help of her husband many joint-ventures.

  • Eyewear: In 2000, the Prada Group developed the first Prada and MiuMiu branded sunglasses and in 2003 it signed a licence agreement with Luxottica group, a world leader in eyewear. An italian story. 
  • Fragrances: In 2003 Prada got an agreement with Puig Beauty & Fashion Group to create a joint venture for the production, distribution and development of Prada perfumes
  • Mobile telephones: In 2006, the Prada Group got a partnership with LG Electronics, one of the world leaders in mobile telecommunications technology, to develop an innovative and iconic mobile telephone. It was the first ever telephone with a completely touch screen interface. Since 2006, every 2 years this collaboration brought to the market highly inovative phones. According to the Brand’s documents, Prada sold more than one million units up to now.

Prada-Phone-LG-3-0

The Prada Foundation

In 1993, Miuccia Prada and Patrizio Bertelli took an important step into their growing interest for contemporary Art. They established “PradaMilanoArte”. It was a exhibition space in Milan dedicated to contemporary painting and sculpture. Miuccia Prada herself described this project as: “The most profound and thought-provoking art projects of our times“. Just that.
Several artists exhibited there, like Eliseo Mattiacci, Nino Franchina or David Smith. These artists were strongly connected with the installation in the building.

Mattiacci-Prada-Milano-Arte

In 1995, the PradaMilanoArte was reorganized as the Prada Foundation, Fondazione Prada. With the help of expert and art curator Germano Celant, they charted a complete reorganization of this art project, in order to provide a sustainable future. This reorganization would focus on many themes like Architecture, photography, cinema, design, or art in general. The amazing point is that rather than make exhibitions on artists existing work, they would co-produce a site specific project that the artist had always dreamed to build.

Prada-Foundation-exhibition Prada-Foundation-detail Prada-Foundation

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Since 2007, the Prada foundation extended its projects to urban environment and culture. They partner with Tribeca film festival and the Biennal of Venice. Lately Prada participated in the movie The Great Gatsby by creating the clothes that the main characters would use. Brilliant video:

As we can see, Miuccia Prada is gifted with a creative mind that always took her away from the standards. She always pushed the limits of pre-concepts making her brand one of the most successful worldwide fashion business ever. Check the brand official website to learn more about this amazing woman:
http://www.prada.com 

2 interesting books are recommended. One is a biography written by fashion expert and journalist Gian Luigi Paracchini. It is called the Prada Life.
Miuccia-Prada-Biography

This biography shows a sophisticated Milanese woman with a history as an active feminist and details her involvement in the Prada brand—a company no longer considered simply a fashion industry leader, but the symbol of a conceptual style that has brought aesthetic standards under scrutiny, and created new trends that have become a lifestyle.

The second book is called the Little Book of Prada. It was written by fashion and beauty journalist Laia Farran Graves. The Little book is an interesting fashion book collection.
The-Little-Book-of-Prada

The book follows a biographical chronology detailing the origins of the brand as a leather-goods manufacturer, then follows the life and career of Miuccia Prada, with chapters organized into collections, collaborations and themes such as art influences and the perfume and beauty lines. Beautiful photography of her finished designs, along with close-up details, portray the innovation of this influential fashion house and the woman behind it.

When passion hits the heart of a visionary, it releases a creative force that could be considered as… unstoppable.

LA

 

Info sourced at the brand website, wikipedia, Vogue, Youtube, Elle magazine, Barnes & Nobles and LeMonde.fr. All content is copyrighted with no reproduction rights available. 

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