Fashion Designer Prada was founded in 1913 in Milan, Italy as a manufacturer of leather bags. What is known today as Prada is mostly the work of the founder’s grand-daughter Miuccia Prada.
Miuccia Prada was born in 1949. After university, she entered the family business 1978 and soon revolutionized the appearance of its products. Her interest in unusual fabrics led to the distinctive trademark of Prada products: the surprising combination of materials. There are usually two discoveries to be made when dealing with Prada products: First, the surprise to see the use of a specific material in an unusual context and in consequence, the astonishment how good it fits the purpose. In 1989, she introduced women’s wear with instant success, men’s wear followed equally successful in 1995.
Prada is said to be the most prominent example of a new form of inward-directed luxury. While in the eighties luxury was explicitly displayed, today an understated luxury is sought, only recognizable by insiders. Thus, Prada clothes avoid very loud coloring and easily appealing appearances. They are described as cool, comfortable, pure, graceful, and minimalistic.
Miuccia Prada, who is entirely in charge of the companies creative decisions, says she bases her decisions mostly on intuition. She is reported to be overly fussy about each detail of her design. It can happen that each product has to be changed over and over in order to come closest to Miucci Prada’s initial idea. Her husband Patrizio Bertelli is the business-man behind Miuccia Prada. He is responsible for the commercial side of the products and the retail strategy.