Nino Cerruti

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Nino Cerruti
Born (1930-09-25) 25 September 1930 (age 91)
OccupationBusinessman, designer, stylist
Known forFounder of Cerruti

Nino Cerruti (born September 25, 1930) is an Italian businessman and stylist. He founded his own haute couture house, Cerruti, in 1967 in Paris. Today, he manages the Italian family business Lanificio Fratelli Cerruti, which was founded in 1881 by his grandfather.

Personal history[edit]

The head of the family woolen business after his father's untimely death. Nino's grandfather had founded a textile mill in Biella, Italy in 1881 (Lanificio Fratelli Cerruti). Drawing from his experience in producing excellent fabrics, Cerruti ventured into the production of clothing in the late 1950s. His first men's collection, Hitman, was shown in 1957 and was considered a revolution in men's wear at the time. Eventually, in 1967, the Cerruti menswear line was launched which was to be followed by a womenswear collection a year later.

The first Cerruti boutique opened in 1967 in Place de la Madeleine in Paris, where Cerruti moved the company's headquarters in order to be closer to the international fashion capital. The fabric production under the name of Lanificio Fratelli Cerruti and the Hitman label remained in Italy. Cerruti, Lanificio Cerruti of Biella and Hitman, based out of Corsico, together formed Fratelli Cerruti, the Cerruti Brothers group.

Over the years, Cerruti offered womenswear and menswear, the Cerruti 1881 diffusion line, a luxury ready-to-wear collection named Cerruti Arte, Cerruti Jeans, the Cerruti Brothers business collection for men, Cerruti 1881 Shapes for the Asian market as well as fragrances and accessories. Later the clothing lines were regrouped under the 'Cerruti 1881' name. Cerruti has always been known for its classic wool suits, always trying to match the everyday challenges for its owner.

In 1978, the Cerruti house made an entry into the world of fine fragrance with Nino Cerruti pour Homme, soon to be followed by Cerruti 1881 pour Homme in 1990, Cerruti Image in 1998, among others fragrances.

In the 1980s, Cerruti began a collaboration with cinema. From Bonnie and Clyde, Pretty Woman to Basic Instinct, the brand Cerruti designed clothes for actors such as Michael Douglas, Jack Nicholson, Tom Hanks, Bruce Willis, Sharon Stone, Julia Roberts, Robert Redford, Harrison Ford, Al Pacino or Jean Paul Belmondo.

According to, Mr. Cerruti had cameo appearances in the following Hollywood movies: Holy Man (1998), Catwalk (1996) and Cannes Man (1996).

In 1994 Cerruti was the official designer of Scuderia Ferrari.

New designers and retirement[edit]

In 1964-1970, Giorgio Armani - who later found his own eponymous fashion empire in 1974 - had worked for Cerruti at Hitman, under the direction of Mr. Cerruti.

In 1996 Nino Cerruti named Narciso Rodriguez, a former Anne Klein, Calvin Klein and TSE designer, to be creative director of Cerruti. In 1997 Cerruti replaced Rodriguez with Peter Speliopoulos, a DKNY designer.

In October 2000 Nino Cerruti sold 51% of his company to Fin.Part, an Italian industrial group. Less than a year later the group bought the rest of the company and forced 71 year old Nino Cerruti out of it claiming irreconcilable differences. "There was a perpetual conflict of interest",[1] Cerruti said later. Hence, the Spring Summer 2002 collection marked the end of Cerruti fashion being designed by Nino Cerruti.

In autumn 2001, Fin.Part installed Roberto Menichetti, who previously was responsible for the creative revival of Burberry as a creative director. Menichetti left the house of fashion after only one season and has been replaced by Istvan Francer, a former DKNY designer. Francer stayed on for two seasons.

In spring 2003, David Cardona, who had worked for Richard Tyler and Chrome Hearts, replaced Istvan Francer as a creative director at Cerruti. Scotsman Adrian Smith was appointed head of the menswear collections.

By 2004, Fin.part was in a deep financial crisis and declared bankruptcy in 2005. In the same year Cerruti brand survived unsuccessful takeover attempt by another Italian menswear manufacturer - Manifattura Paolini.

In August 2006 Cerruti finally was sold to American private equity firm MatlinPatterson. MatlinPatterson intended to revitalize the Cerruti brand by taking on Nicolas Andreas Taralis, a former designer with Dior who also owned his signature fashion label Homme, was appointed creative director in the summer of the same year.

In October 2007, Taralis was replaced by Belgian Jean Paul Knott, a former Krizia, Yves Saint Laurent and Louis Féraud designer who also owned an eponymous fashion label.[2][3] Knott had originally been hired by Taralis to oversee the label's diffusion line Cerruti 1881 in March 2007.[4]

Since his departure 2000 Mr. Cerruti has concentrated on the family-owned textile mill business called Lanificio Fratelli Cerruti, which is located in Biella. He did not cut all ties with the fashion house and always attends to the Cerruti fashion shows at the front row.

In 2004, Lanificio Fratelli Cerruti company bought the Italian furniture design company Baleri.



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