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FENDI began in 1918 when Adele Casagrande opened a leather & fur shop in Via del Plebiscito in central Rome. When Adele married Edoardo FENDI in 1925, they made a decision to change the name to FENDI. The business prospered, & a new shop was opened in Via Piave in 1932. By 1946 Paola, 15, the eldest of the couple's five daughters, went to work for the firm, followed by her sisters Carla, Anna, Franca, & Alda.
In 1965 a marriage between the FENDIs & German designer Karl Lagerfeld was sealed, & it proved to be fortuitous for both. Lagerfeld immediately created the inverted FF logo that joined the growing list of international status symbols, & then set about, aided & abetted by the sisters, to revolutionize the treatment of fur & other clothing.
What had once been a precious but stiff & heavy garment was transformed into a light, soft, easy-to-wear & above all flattering outfit. The team went on to invent new ways of working with fur, tanning, dying, & treating, & took previously unused skins & turned them into fashionable garments. By 1966 FENDI had presented its first couture fur collection, designed by Lagerfeld. It was an immediate success with foreign buyers. Marvin Traub, president of Bloomingdale's, discovered FENDI's leather goods & introduced them to the United States. Other outlets soon followed, & today FENDI is largely represented through high-end department stores.
In 1969 FENDI presented its first ready-to-wear fur collection at Palazzo Pitti in Florence, bringing continuously evolving techniques & imaginative designs to lower-priced furs without sacrificing quality. When the sisters could not find the fabric clothes they wanted to show under the furs their ready-to-wear line was born, again to great success.
The company's accessories are now found on the arm of many stars & signature bags such as the Spy, buckled B-bag, & embellished bucket bag are often in high demand sometimes creating long waiting lists.
FENDI currently licenses out their name for their watches, which feature Swiss movements.
Wikipedia contributors. FENDI. Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. April 28, 2007, 18:46 UTC. Available at: http://en.wikipedia.org/withindex.php?title=Fendi&oldid=126678381. Accessed May 1, 2007.