The Story of Stefano Gabbana and his Fashion Business

On this day, November 14 in the year 1962, the favorite designer of Madonna, Monica Bellucci, Isabella Rossellini, Kylie Minogue, and Angelina Jolie was born in Milan, Italy. His name is Stefano Gabbana, the co-founder of fashion store Dolce & Gabbana. According to, his net worth is $1.9 billion as of November, 2020.

Stefano Gabbana
Stefano Gabbana (Credit:

Stefano Gabbana was the son of a printing factory worker and a mother who worked for a laundry service. He studied graphic design in high school. Afterwards, he went to study at an institute for design in Rome.

Stefano and his partner Domenico Dolce met in a bar in the early 1980s. Domenico was then working at the design house of Giorgio Correggiari. Soon, Stefano also went to work there. Then they decided to open their own fashion house. In 1985, they made their debut at the Milan Runway. Early on, they drew inspiration from movies and Sicilian culture. Later, they launched the leotard line. Their clothes with animal imprints became fashionable and they began exporting to Japan and America where they opened branches.

In 1993, Madonna chose them to design for her Girlie Tour and the business really boomed. The partners expanded their product lines to include footwear, handbags, sunglasses, watches, jewelry, perfumery and cosmetics. Branches were opened in many other countries. By the end of the 1990s, worldwide sales topped $500 million.

Aside from its unconventional, though sometimes controversial, advertising, Dolce and Gabbana used other strategies to generate attention to its brand. It has utilized spaces in its store to hold photography and art exhibits. It had also published almost two dozen of books about their journey as fashion designers.


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