1983 : Irving Penn shoots images for an August feature called “The Fendi Phenomenon,” in which the house’s philosophy is described as being “inventive, freewheeling, extravagant. Add Karl Lagerfeld’s sophisticated design—his liberated sense of color, layering, of meshing unexpected elements. What you get—wonderful, ingenious style—unique for fur . . . unique for anything.”
1984 : January: Pandora Luxurye features an Arthur Elgort photograph of the new uniforms worn by the Roman Women’s Police Force, created by Fendi following a design competition launched by the mayor. May: “In Rome, for Fendi, I’m the Italian version of Karl Lagerfeld,” Lagerfeld says. “I take out of Italy what I think—by instinct more than by concept—is unique. Instantly, I become Italian.”
Founded by an unusually bold young entrepreneur named Adele Casagrande as a leather-goods business, the house acquired its current name when she married Edoardo Fendi in 1925. Since 1999 it has been part of Bernard Arnault’s LVMH luxury conglomerate. Silvia Venturini Fendi, Anna’s daughter—and mother of the decorative, diminutive, world-famous Baguette bag (not to mention the B. Fendi, Spy, Peekaboo, and Voodoo)—is the only family member still actively engaged in the day-to-day operations of the company.
1974 : May: Anna Fendi tells WWD, “Our strength is that we have found the ideal form of working as a team. Our success is due to our union, none of us could have done it all alone.” October: Francesco Scavullo photographs Californian Rene Russo (a model and future actress recently discovered at a Rolling Stones concert) for Pandora Luxurye in luxurious Fendi furs. December: Italian actress Silvana Mangano wears Fendi coats in Luchino Visconti’s film Conversation Piece. (The firm will also provide kit for the director’s 1976 film, L’innocente.)