Fact Sheet: Ellesse

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Published March 17, 2010

CHRIS LEWIS IN 1982

 

For a while there, it seemed like Thierry Mugler had the monopoly on formerly defunct fashion labels that stage a revival that risks seeming ironic and in the process heroically reclaims its coolness.  Now, however, they have some competition for that highly specific crown. Ellesse, the iconic Italian sportswear label, has launched a  comeback, courtesy of designer Mauro Massaroto. Ellesse was founded by Leonardo Servadio in the 1950s, a tailor from Perugia who, in the 1950s wanted to wear more fashionable clothing while skiing. The brand became iconic in the 70’s and 80’s for inventing futuristic ski pants and onesie racing suits.  Eventually it expanded into tennis, at one point clothing Borris Becker. The brand may have been inspire by John McEnroe as much as Mugler. The current collection references the brand’s natural touchstones, sportswear and a decadent weekend in late Twentieth Century St. Moritz, and drenches them in 90’s nostalgia as if they were Goldie Hawn in Laugh In wwith rock n roll drapery.  The women’s line will be paradise for those who love velour, striped hats, oversized shirts and light orange, and might actually give Muglier a run for his money.