Legendary Designer Roberto Cavalli, Known for His Collaborations With Music Icons, Dies at 83

The legendary designer blew up in the '90s after he revolutionized the denim industry by introducing Lycra fabric to the material.

(Photo by Tim P. Whitby / Getty Images for Vogue & The Dubai Mall)

Italian fashion designer Roberto Cavalli passed away on Friday. He was 83 years old. 

Italian news agency ANSA reported that Cavalli succumbed to an illness in his home in Florence, Italy. The legendary designer's fashion house released a statement on its Instagram that also announced his death and included various quotes from him throughout the years. In the caption of the post, the fashion house included words from Fausto Puglisi, the creative director at Roberto Cavalli.

"Dear Roberto, you may not be physically here with us anymore but I know I will feel your spirit with me always," Puglisi wrote. "It is the greatest honour of my career to work under your legacy and to create for the brand you founded with such vision and style. Rest in peace you will be missed and you are loved by so many that your name will continue on, a beacon of inspiration for others, and especially for me."

Sergio Azzolari, CEO at Roberto Cavalli, added, "The Roberto Cavalli company shares condolences with Mr. Cavalli's family loss. His legacy remains a constant source of inspiration."

Cavalli's career in the fashion industry began in the 1970s when he became a force to be reckoned with in Europe because of his taste for color and prints. By the time the '90s came around, Cavalli's name blew up when he revolutionized the denim industry by including Lycra fabric in jeans. 

From there, he became a household name designing men's and womenswear while also becoming beloved by high-profile celebrities. Cavalli worked with a number of notable hip-hop and pop acts through the years including Mariah Carey and Mary J. Blige.

He designed Aaliyah's iconic yellow-and-black striped dress for the 2000 MTV Video Music Awards and was also the creative force behind the marigold ruffle gown from his fall 2016 collection, which was designed by Peter Dundas and featured in Beyoncé's HBO special Lemonade.

Nicki Minaj was the face of one of Cavalli's Spring/Summer advertising campaigns in 2015 and Vic Mensa was featured as a model in an editorial for his Fall/Winter 2016 collection.

Aaliyah wearing Roberto Cavalli for the MTV VMA’s 2000🕊️ pic.twitter.com/qzjAXfO5Ai

— Up Next (@upnextdesigner) April 12, 2024
Twitter: @upnextdesigner

Rest In Peace to Roberto Cavalli. 🥺

Here are some Nicki Minaj looks he’s graced us with. pic.twitter.com/FH9UxdaFZL

— Stats of Minaj (@statsofminaj) April 12, 2024
Twitter: @statsofminaj

All that shines - Rapper #VicMensa wearing a red embroidered blouse from the #RobertoCavalliFW16 collection. #RobertoCavalliEditorials pic.twitter.com/VJJVpIlqhU

— Roberto Cavalli (@Roberto_Cavalli) October 2, 2016
Twitter: @Roberto_Cavalli

In 2023, Cavalli was selected to collaborate with Beyoncé for her Renaissance tour and Taylor Swift for the Eras tour, during which his fashion house designed several of their looks.

Rip to the legend Roberto Cavalli. 🤍 pic.twitter.com/uuiNK9TD7j

— BEYONCÉ NEWS (@BeyonceHiveNews) April 12, 2024
Twitter: @BeyonceHiveNews

💔| The designer of multiple Eras Tour outfits, Roberto Cavalli, sadly passed away

Rest in peace. pic.twitter.com/K0PkR1m8Do

— The Swift Society (@TheSwiftSociety) April 12, 2024
Twitter: @TheSwiftSociety

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