A color that captured the beauty of the sea. That was what inspired Anna Molinari and husband Gianpaolo Tarabini to create fashion brand Blumarine in 1977 in Carpi, a little Italian town near Modena. The brand was a worldwide success, a fitting tribute to a hard-working couple with a passion for fashion.
Blumarine’s catwalk debut was in 1980 at Modit, one of Italy’s most important fashion shows. It was soon getting attention from public and fashion experts alike. Blumarine was awarded “Designer of the Year” which led to the couple taking part in Milan Fashion Week, showcase for emerging design talent.
In 1986, Anna Molinari showed her first collection. The “Queen of Roses” – a nickname given to her because of her passion for the beautiful flowers – became the new queen of the runway, her lines reflecting her magnetic personality. A small, strong woman personifying romance, seduction and charm mixed with irony and joy – this was also the look she wanted for her clients.
The young designer took her cue from the trends of the 70s, blending them with her own experiences of travel, the arts, music, nature and everything else she was surrounded by, transforming the subsequent fusion into pure fashion. Her clothes were fun and feminine, mixing fairytale romanticism with colorful vitality and joie-de-vivre.
The year 1990 saw the opening of the first Blumarine monobrand store in Via della Spiga, in Milan’s fashion district. The company continued to expand, adding more and more specialized brands which it had brought together in the Blufin Group in 1988. This included not only Blumarine, but also Blugirl, the line for young women, Blugirl Folies, for teenagers and Anna Molinari, a more classic line for women.
T-shirts with the Blumarine logo in Swarovsky crystals marked the new millennium and were shown at the Autumn-Winter shows of 2000/01. They also launched the special ultra-luxe cardigan, a unique one-off item with diamonds and pearls embroidered on the handcuffs, which became famous all over the world.
Now the Blumarine label includes men’s, women’s and children’s lines, as well as accessories, lingerie, eyewear, perfumes, eyewear and watches. All are characterized by attention to detail and the use of precious materials (such as crystals and diamonds for the jewelry and watches for example) and by luxurious, minimal-chic taste. This is even reflected in the Hotel Touring of Carpi, opened by the family in 2003.
Blumarine comtinues to expand all over the world, including the Far East, with stores in Singapore, Seoul and Taipei. Blumarine’s collaboration with German-Australian photographer Helmut Newton was a key factor in helping market the label. His sensual black and white photos were used to highlight the brand’s philosophy, leading to one of its most successful advertisement campaigns ever. He was followed by many others – photographers who captured images of some of the world’s top models wearing Blumarine, from Naomi Campbell and Cindy Crawford to Carla Bruni and Monica Bellucci.
Anna Molinari’s daughter Rossella Tarabini has been with the company since 1995, when she designed her first line for Blumarine, bringing new style and life to the collections. Now most of the creative activity is in her hands and that of her brother Gianguido who joined the business in 1994 and is now managing director after their father’s death in 2006.
The Blufin group now has an annual turnover of over 100 million Euros, with 27 monobrand stores (of which almost ten are Blumarine boutiques) and over 800 distributors all over the world. A true success story for this Italian fashion house.