Vintage clothing from the 1990s and 2000s is currently in high demand. The zingy animal designs and sandblasted denim of Roberto Cavalli may be found among the monogrammed Louis Vuitton, slinky Galliano, and quirky Miss Sixty that millennial and Gen-Z customers spend hours scrolling through on Depop, eBay, and Vinted.
At Roberto Cavalli, there is always more to be had. Over the years, a few designers, notably Peter Dundas, Paul Surridge, and most recently, Fausto Puglisi, who was designated creative consultant in 2020, have recreated the maximalist style guidelines of Mr. Cavalli, who is now 81.
Phygital presentations and waist-up wearing characterized the pandemic fashion landscape in which Puglisi joined the company. Despite this, Miley Cyrus, Doja Cat, Cardi B, Beyoncé, Jennifer Lopez, Lisa, Lizzo, and Megan Thee Stallion were fans of his bizarre work.
He claims to be “born a designer,” noting his love of “flamboyance, confidence, the characteristic Italian sense of decorating, print, and metal hardware as expressions of art” as his motivators. So Roberto Cavalli was the ideal choice. “Cavalli is a form of extravagant dress, lavish eccentricity, and self-expression. It is loud and bold, as quick as a Ferrari, and Italian.
A new generation of celebrity fans has been drawn to the designer’s restoration of popular vintage trends, such as the wild tiger pattern from autumn/winter 2000 that he updated for spring/summer 2022. As a result, demand for original Roberto Cavalli items has surged.
Bella Hadid and Kim Kardashian are cited by Christelle McCracken, the proprietor of My Runway Archive, a store that specializes in fashion from the 1990s and 2000s, as the inspiration behind the buzz. It doesn’t take long for other celebs to copy a certain vintage look once two of the top trendsetters in the world are wearing it, she says.
We go through minimalism phases, but right now people are drawn to extravagant, outlandish designs, which is perhaps why there has been a boom in interest in Cavalli and his designs.
With his body-enhancing, dazzling designs, Roberto Cavalli knew how to outfit a woman, to make her feel sensual but refined at the same time. According to Amelia Lindgren, owner of the vintage shop Nordic Poetry, “Cavalli celebrates women’s sensuality and rebellion by choosing textiles that complement the female form to make you feel powerful and highly gorgeous.” Wearing [Cavalli’s] garments are enjoyable thanks to the extravagant prints, which is what fashion should be about. To uphold female empowerment in every collection, Puglisi has carried on his tradition.
Although Cavalli is known for his eye-catching outfits, the sandblasted jeans he invented in the mid-1990s have also become a cult classic. Keep an eye out for pieces from the early 2000s, particularly the electrifying spring/summer 2003 collection that the Kardashian-Jenners, Dua Lipa, and other celebrities adored. According to Cherie Balch, the creator of Shrimpton Couture, “Pieces that have a celebrity link are a great win.”
Christelle suggests using websites like Vogue Runway, Livingly, and FirstView to research prior collections. You’ll be able to recognize when a good piece emerges once you are familiar with the runway looks. It’s crucial to know this because good pieces on stores like Depop, eBay, or Vestiaire Collective tend to sell out quickly.
According to Cherie, Roberto Cavalli’s leather is a genuine collector’s item. In his early years, the designer created a method for printing his distinctive designs onto thin leather, which he utilized to make ready-to-wear dresses. If you’re a true Cavalli aficionado, finding some of those uncommon and early examples will be a great source of pleasure.