European Fashion Heritage Association

Journal Object Focus

EFHA Focus: Sketch by Emilio Pucci

1950sItalian fashionItalian style

Sketch from the Collezione Palio, 1957

The image shows a sketch of a bathing suit from the Collezione Palio designed by Emilio Pucci in 1957, Courtesy Pucci Archive. The bathing suit is a one-piece in black and yellow fabric, one-shoulder, with a central design recalling the battlements of medieval castles. The battlement divides the yellow from the black part, creating an interesting geometric play on the curvaceous body of the model sketched wearing the swimsuit. The silhouette of the model is clearly inspired by the divas of the 1950, who were costumers and also friends of the Marchese Pucci. Together with the bathing suit, a matching headpiece in black fabric is also added to complete the look.

In 1957 The Marchese Emilio Pucci presented at Palazzo Pitti a collection inspired by the Palio di Siena. The collection drew inspiration from the colors of the flags and the heraldic motifs of the various contrade battling each year in the famous Palio di Siena: an history event taking place every year, and to which the Marchese assisted in 1955. The translation he made of this event into his fashion language was a synthesis of the atmosphere of the Palio with the ‘modern’ attitude to dress that was developing in western society. Emilio Pucci himself declared: ‘It may seem strange that I have chosen such a remote theme for my work that is so modern. But I, a Florentine craftsman of today, feel very close to the artisans of the Three and Fourteenth Centuries and it is the medieval element of the Palio with its rich geometric and color motifs that fascinated me.’