Diego, Dario & Luca Rossetti
In 1945, Renzo Rossetti started his activity from scratch, working by himself to cut the hides for several types of sports footwear (cycling, football, athletics and hockey). These were sold in the famous Brigatti shop in Milan, one of the few remaining shops of its kind in the city.
After some years, Fratelli Rossetti saw the arrival of success but, wishing to grow further, they transferred the trademarks and equipment for this particular production to Atala Sport in Padua. Thus they decided to start all over again and switched to the manufacture of classic shoes. These were the years 1954 to 1957, which witnessed the orientation and acquisition of new skills in the creation of womenï¿½s ï¿½ballerinaï¿½ shoes, and elegantly simple menï¿½s footwear characterized by extraordinarily flexible workmanship. All of this led to the creation of a small collection of menï¿½s shoes featuring contours that were distinct from the various styles on sale in that period. Renzo Rossetti consequently engaged in work that brought out his aesthetic sense and a ï¿½healthy dose of perfectionismï¿½.
The 60s, which were characterized by greater serenity and economic calmness, featured important collaborations with skilled craftsmen, thanks to which Fratelli Rossetti managed to attain excellent results, placing the emphasis on style and research into the product. In those years, peopleï¿½s lifestyles and requirements changed continuously, but the uniformity in the production of menï¿½s shoes did not allow companies to adapt to these new circumstances. Hence, the idea arose of returning to ï¿½beautiful shoes handmade by expert shoemakersï¿½ which, by means of a series of special treatments, were appreciated also in variants that were different to those that were common at the time. As the years rolled by, the market became ever more mature, discerning and open to novelty.
To meet the demands of the market, in 1961 Fratelli Rossetti began to combine tremendous attention to the product with innovative ideas, introducing unusual accessories and atypical materials. The company took an interest in moccasins, which were an expression of greater liberty for the foot. These were produced in a wide variety of styles; the foremost being those with bows, which Fratelli Rossetti were the first to import from the United States, and the ï¿½Yachtï¿½, an extremely soft summer shoe that is still in production.
1965witnessed the presence at the menï¿½s fashion shows in Sanremo, marking Fratelli Rossettiï¿½s entry into the world of communications. Thanks to this show, the only one of its kind, the company made great waves in the press in a sector in which public relations did not yet exist.
The 70s, dealings with the international market and the ï¿½big namesï¿½ of fashion intensified. Landmark meetings were held with stylists and celebrities who were creating the new fashion system: from a precocious Giorgio Armani, who designed several models for Fratelli Rossetti, including a successful series of Yacht moccasins, to other prestigious brand names from this world (Pierre Cardin, Ralph Lauren, and Yves Saint Laurent, to name but a few). These relations, based on the common quest for the best way of expressing the style of the period through the modern realization of the product, never lost sight of the value of tradition. During these years, Fratelli Rossetti widened its production greatly, and established itself as an important figure in Italian manufacturing. This characteristic has remained constant for the company, which also succeeded in expanding its presence in other markets. This period saw production of the first womenï¿½s shoes begin, and the official ï¿½consecrationï¿½ of the brand in ï¿½Lï¿½Uomo Vogueï¿½, which was already considered the menï¿½s fashion Bible at the time. The unifying theme of the Rossetti story has always been its ability to adapt every single kind of footwear to the fashion of the day, which still sees alternation between elegant models, casual shoes and classic moccasins that are suitable for any occasion.
The 80s opened with a transformation that was very important for the company: the new logo. The opportunity that generated it was seized at the right moment.
In 1979, during the opening of the boutique in New York, Renzo Rossetti met Massimo Vignanelli and his wife Lella, who for years had been one of the most important couples in international design. Having observed the extremely refined graphics of their work and in view of their specialization in the creation of brands, Renzo Rossetti entrusted them with this important task. Every aspect of the various uses of the logo was taken into account with great professionalism: fromstationery with the writing prototype, to packaging, including the famous shopping bag, which is on display in the Victoria and Albert Museum in London.
The Eighties also marked the entry of Renzoï¿½s young sons into the company. Nowadays, all three are Managing Directors, and while Diego takes care of sales and communication activities in Italy and abroad, Dario manages the design office, coordinates the modelling department and looks after the strategic purchasing division. Luca entered the company a few years after his brothers and now, although he concentrates primarily on the financial and administrative segment, he is also deeply involved in the production dimension.
The 90s were the years of novelty. The new casual range ï¿½Flexaï¿½ was launched, which combined the comfort of light-trekking shoes with a ï¿½metropolitanï¿½ style and anticipated the free-wear trend that was to characterize the years to come, until it became an authentic mass phenomenon and a cult hit. Flexa arose from the intuition of Renzo Rossetti and his personal desire to create a multiuse product that would meet a wide range of requirements. These characteristics led to its immediate success and in the coming years the range of models was significantly developed and perfected.
The communication turnaround arrived in 1996. Thanks to the collaboration with the famous photographer Giovanni Gastel, who favours campaigns with a highly evocative content, Fratelli Rossetti began to realign its image with the new market. Associations with Gastel continue to this day. The ultimate innovation in these years concerned the beginning of relations with the noted architect Peter Marino who fitted out the new Fratelli Rossetti boutique in New York, looking after every detail personally. The project would be reused subsequently for the companyï¿½s other shops.
Fifty years of history: this is the anniversary that was celebrated in 2003. This event, which was also acknowledged by Poste Italiane through the dedication of an official stamp, coincided with the critical moment of the passing of the generational baton experienced by family businesses. From it, Fratelli Rossetti emerged with a sort of ï¿½new foundingï¿½ to define and establish the principles of continuity, such as the concentration on products and quality, and those of discontinuity with respect to the past. Renewal is, in fact, a typical characteristic of the company, which has allowed it to take on and overcome challenges that were unthinkable until a short time ago. Despite the fact that the period witnessed frequent strategic alliances between brands, Fratelli Rossetti has always banked on its own prowess and has remained independent in the correct assumption that in future the clientele would favour products from specialized companies. This unquestionably difficult decision is rewarded day after day through the immense appreciation for its products from a customer base that is becoming ever more sophisticated and discerning. The added value of Fratelli Rossetti comes from the quality of the footwear; but above all from the consumersï¿½ perception of this characteristic. They are clients that remain loyal over time, who refuse to relinquish the privilege of wearing Fratelli Rossetti and who act as direct spokespersons for the continuing diffusion of the product and its values.