Born in Italy, in 1944 Gianfranco Ferré began his fashion career in 1970 by designing accessories, then worked as a raincoat designer. In 1974 he started his own company and launched his signature collection for women in 1978. His first men's collection appeared in 1982. In 1989 Gianfranco Ferré became Stylistic Director of Christian Dior in Paris. But that was not to last long and in 1996, Gianfranco Ferré left Dior to start his own brand which is still going strong to this day with his signature relaxed and sophisticated look.