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Legendary designer Roberto Cavalli dead at 83

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Renowned Italian fashion

designer Roberto Cavalli

, celebrated for his daring use of python and extravagant animal prints that captivated the global elite for decades, passed away on Friday at the age of 83, according to reports from news media.
The Italian news agency ANSA stated that Cavalli died at his home in Florence, his birthplace, following a prolonged illness.

Debuting in the 1970s and adorning luminaries like Sophia Loren and Brigitte Bardot, Cavalli’s provocative and alluring designs continued to resonate with later generations of stars, including Kim Kardashian and Jennifer Lopez.

Italian designer Roberto Cavalli poses prior the Just Cavalli Spring-Summer 2013 collection on September 21, 2012 during the Women's fashion week in Milan.

(FILES) Italian designer Roberto Cavalli poses prior the Just Cavalli Spring-Summer 2013 collection on September 21, 2012 during the Women’s fashion week in Milan. Italian fashion designer Roberto Cavalli has died at 83, Italian medias announced on April 12, 2024.

Cavalli’s personal style was as flamboyant as his creations, characterized by a penchant for Ferraris, indulgent cigars, and impeccably tailored shirts often left open to reveal his bronzed chest. He wed a Miss Universe runner-up, possessed a distinctive purple helicopter, and owned a vineyard in Tuscany, cultivating friendships with the cream of Hollywood’s elite.
Born on November 15, 1940, in Florence, a city renowned for its excellence in leather craftsmanship, Cavalli gained fame for his innovative use of printed leather and form-fitting, sand-blasted jeans.

In 2005, Cavalli was enlisted to revamp the iconic uniforms of the Playboy Bunnies, introducing a rendition infused with his signature leopard print, staying true to his bold and audacious aesthetic.
Roberto Cavalli’s legendary status as a fashion designer stemmed from several key factors that set him apart in the industry. His designs were characterized by their boldness, flamboyance, and innovation, revolutionising the use of animal prints, particularly python, and introducing daring patterns and embellishments that caught the attention of the fashion world.

FILE PHOTO: Italian designer Cavalli and his wife Eva acknowledge applause on the catwalk at the end of his Roberto Cavalli Autumn/Winter 2013 collection at Milan Fashion Week

FILE PHOTO: Italian designer Roberto Cavalli and his wife Eva acknowledge applause on the catwalk at the end of his Roberto Cavalli Autumn/Winter 2013 collection at Milan Fashion Week February 23, 2013. REUTERS/Tony Gentile/File Photo

Known for his use of luxurious fabrics like printed leather and sumptuous silks, Cavalli’s creations exuded opulence and sophistication. His attention to detail and quality craftsmanship elevated his designs to iconic status. Celebrities and style icons, including stars like Sophia Loren, Brigitte Bardot, Kim Kardashian, and Jennifer Lopez, favored Cavalli’s designs for decades, contributing to his widespread fame and influence.
Cavalli’s own flamboyant and extravagant lifestyle mirrored his designs, making him a larger-than-life figure in the fashion world. His penchant for fast cars, cigars, and tailored shirts became synonymous with his brand. Beyond fashion design, Cavalli expanded his brand into various ventures, including fragrances, accessories, and home furnishings, showcasing his entrepreneurial spirit and ability to create a lifestyle brand.

FILE PHOTO: Roberto Cavalli poses with Nicky Hilton and Anne Heche at the launch party for Roberto Cavalli Vodka in Los Angeles

FILE PHOTO: Italian fashion designer Roberto Cavalli poses with Nicky Hilton (L) and actress Anne Heche (R) at the launch party for Roberto Cavalli Vodka in Los Angeles May 11, 2006. Cavalli introduced his ultra-premium vodka, retailing at $60 per bottle, in his first epicurean venture in the U.S.. REUTERS/Mario Anzuoni/File Photo

His designs transcended cultural boundaries and appealed to a global audience, celebrated not only in Europe but also in markets across Asia, the Americas, and beyond. Cavalli’s playful and sensual aesthetic, often embracing the female form with figure-hugging silhouettes and daring cuts, became a trademark of his brand.
Throughout his career, Cavalli inspired countless designers and left a lasting impact on the fashion industry. His innovative spirit and fearless approach to design continued to influence contemporary fashion trends, cementing his legacy as one of the most iconic designers of his time.

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