Emanuel Ungaro

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Emanuel Ungaro
Taormina film festival 2009, emmanuel ungaro.jpg
Emanuel Ungaro(2009)
Born (1933-02-13) 13 February 1933 (age 85)[1]
Aix-en-Provence, France[1]
Nationality French
Label(s) House of Emanuel Ungaro
Awards Legion D, Honneur

Emanuel (Maffeolit) Ungaro (born 13 February 1933) is a retired French fashion designer, who founded the fashion house that bears his name in 1965.

Early life

Ungaro's Italian father fled to France from Francavilla Fontana of Brindisi province because of the fascist dictatorship in Italy. Ungaro's father was a tailor and he gave his son a sewing machine when he was young.[1]

The House of Emanuel Ungaro

At the age of 22, he moved to Paris. Three years later he began designing for the House of Cristobal Balenciaga for three years before quitting to work for Courrèges. Four years later, in 1965 with the assistance of Swiss artist Sonja Knapp and Elena Bruna Fassio, Emanuel Ungaro opened his own fashion house in Paris.

Ungaro launched his first menswear collection, Ungaro Uomo, in 1973, and his first perfume, Diva, 10 years later in 1983.Ungaro was a participant in The Battle of Versailles Fashion Show held on November 28, 1973. Later followed the perfumes Senso (1987), Ungaro (1991) and Emanuel Ungaro For Men (1991). In 1996, he formed a partnership with Salvatore Ferragamo. In 1997, Ungaro, Ferragamo and Bulgari created a new company: Emanuel Ungaro Parfums. The new perfumes to follow was Fleur de Diva (1997), Desnuda (2001) and Apparition (2004).

In 2005, Ungaro retired and sold the label to internet entrepreneur Asim Abdullah for US$84 million.[1][2]

After the sale, the label was languished with a revolving door of designers,[3] the last of which, Esteban Cortazar, who was appointed in 2007, was fired two years later after his refusal to work with actress Lindsay Lohan. Subsequently, Lohan was appointed Artistic Director, working with new head designer Estrella Archs, who was hired hastily to replace Cortazar.[3] The introduction of Lohan, which was meant to give the label publicity, was received with shock and dismay in Paris Fashion Week 2009.[3] In 2010, during Paris Fashion Week, Lindsay Lohan announced that she was no longer working for or with Ungaro, and that she could not comment on the matter because of legal issues.

In 2009, the label had sales of about $200 million from fragrance and less-expensive lines sold in Asia, but the runway collection has been losing money for years.[3] In April 2010, it was announced that Archs had been dismissed and British designer Giles Deacon would be taking over as creative director.[2][4]


In 2008, Avon and Emanuel Ungaro collaborated to launch a new duo of fragrances, U by Ungaro for Her and U by Ungaro for Him. Actress Reese Witherspoon served as the scents' spokesperson.

Personal life

In 1988, Ungaro married Laura Bernabei. He has a daughter, Cosima Ungaro.[citation needed]


  1. ^ a b c d Milligan, Lauren (19 April 2010). "Emanuel Ungaro Biography". Vogue. Condé Nast Publications. Archived from the original on 18 July 2010. Retrieved 16 June 2010. 
  2. ^ a b "Giles at Ungaro – It's official!". Grazia. Arnoldo Mondadori Editore. 26 April 2010. Retrieved 26 April 2010. 
  3. ^ a b c d Wilson, Eric (5 October 2009). "A Controversial Debut for Lohan in Paris". The New York Times. Retrieved 1 May 2010. 
  4. ^ Alexander, Hilary (21 April 2010). "Giles Deacon for Emanuel Ungaro?". The Daily Telegraph. UK. Retrieved 25 April 2010. 


5. Morris,Bernadine. "Review/Design:When America Stole The Runway From Paris Couture".The New York Times 10 Sep 1993.

External links

  • Ungaro Corporate Site
  • Emanuel Ungaro at the Fashion Model Directory
  • Interactive timeline of couture houses and couturier biographies
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