Giuseppe Zanotti comes from San Mauro Pascoli, a small town a few kilometers from Fellini’s Rimini, famous for its long-established shoe manufacturing tradition.
In the early Eighties Zanotti was a keen DJ, frequenting eclectic, avant-garde nightspots. Shortly afterwards his natural bent for art, design and fashion led him to follow the prêt-à-porter catwalk shows in Milan and Paris with great interest. But it was his deep-rooted passion for women’s shoes and his fascination with the craft industry he had so admired in his native town that spurred him to take the first big step towards becoming a shoe designer.
In the beginning he started working with small artisan companies as a freelance designer and shortly afterwards, thanks to his talent and energy, designed for some of the leading fashion houses, including Thierry Mugler, Missoni, Fendi, Roberto Cavalli and Valentino.
In the early ’90s, he longed for a free rein to create his own models and styles without any constraints. The turning point came with his acquisition of the Vicini shoe factory, where he transferred his style department and set up additional departments producing jewels and heels. He also took on skilled embroiderers, basing the whole operation on creativity and craftsmanship of the highest level: Giuseppe saw the shoe factory as something more akin to a dressmaker’s, set up to meet every woman’s footwear needs.
The first collection was presented in New York to a warm reception from buyers, who immediately put their faith in this new designer and his jeweled footwear. Success and popularity quickly followed, reflected in the company’s growth: after starting out with a tiny workforce, it soon employed over 300 skilled workers producing elegant footwear.
In 2000 the first Giuseppe Zanotti Design boutique opened in Milan. Additional boutiques followed in the major fashion and luxury capitals of New York, Paris, London, Moscow, Dubai and Hong Kong, with the label today counting over 60 sales points around the world. After starting life in Giuseppe Zanotti’s creative workshop, the Vicini company quickly grew to boast a 350-strong workforce, five company-owned factories, two flagship stores in Milan and New York and 7 press offices that represent the brand all around the world. Research and development still constitute the beating heart of the company and it is the unmistakable style of Giuseppe Zanotti creations that make them such a hit with the stars of the entertainment industry worldwide. But Giuseppe’s creative flair is no longer restricted to elegant women’s footwear. Today his collections propose a wide range of sneakers for men and women which are proving ever more popular on the market and in the world of showbiz. The jewelry collection, launched as an extension of jeweled shoes, offers a range of jewels and highly original, innovative body belts. Lastly, the FW 12/13 collection marked the launch of the Giuseppe Homme line, dedicated to style-conscious men.
Over the years the spirit of Giuseppe Zanotti has remained the same, a blend of innocence and rock ‘n’ roll, keeping one eye on the past and its invaluable manufacturing tradition, and the other on the future and research. His creations remain true to his original sources of inspiration, with art and music stimulating the key emotions to be turned into brilliant styling for the feet.