Roberto Cavalli Has Died at 83

Breaking news today. Roberto Cavalli (November 15, 1940 – April 12, 2024) has died at age 83. The «King of Bling», who has been synonymous with vibrant animal prints and sand-blasted denim, has died in his hometown Florence.

«Surround yourself with love, because love will be the beacon of your life.» – Roberto Cavalli

Roberto Cavalli launched his eponymous label in 1970 after his textile print studies and presented his first prêt-à-porter collection at age 30. He rose to fame extremely fast thanks to a revolutionary printing procedure on leather that he patented. He went on to open his first boutique in Saint-Tropez in 1972, and was soon after invited to present at the Sala Bianca in Florence.

With Roberto Cavalli in 2011.

Throughout his career, Roberto Cavalli created very sexy clothes in bright and bold colors. Animal prints were in his DNA as well as a very innovative approach to fabrics. He went on to introduce additional lines, including RC Menswear, Just Cavalli, which was marketed to a younger consumer, and a children’s collection. The brand also expanded into hospitality, opening its Cavalli Café in Florence in 2002, a concept it eventually brought to other cities, including Milan, Ibiza and Miami.

According to BoF, his company has faced a series of challenges in the last decade: In 2014, it began posting annual losses. In 2015, the Cavalli family sold 90 percent of the business to private equity firm Clessidra Capital Partners. In 2019, it closed its US stores and laid off 93 employees. It filed for bankruptcy in Italy in March 2019. The company went on to be acquired by Dubai-based real estate devloper Vision Investment Co. LLC later that same year.

With Fausto Puglisi in Café Cavalli in Milano in 2012.

The Cavalli collections are currently designed by Fausto Puglisi.

At the home of Roberto Cavalli were lots of animals.

Personally speaking, I met Roberto on several occasions and was invited to his house several times in Florence. He loved animals and was a very kind man who loved to host. RIP, Roberto, you will be missed and I feel privileged to have so many beautiful outfits from you in my closet.

In Roberto’s living room in his house in Florence.

If you are interested, I invite you to read an interview with him from 2011 here.

LoL, Sandra

Photos: © Sandra Bauknecht and Courtesy of Roberto Cavalli
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F/W 2013: Asian Exoticism

Asian Exoti

The influence of Asian exoticism has inspired fashion designers over decades. This season is no different from previous ones. For F/W 2013, the combination of oriental prints and modern outfits has been spotted on the runways. Below are some of my favourite pieces available now. The background photos were taken during my recent trip through China in Guilin.

Kenneth Jay Lane Necklace Asia FW 2013

Beaded resin and gold-plated necklace by Kenneth Jay Lane

Mary Katrantzou FW 2013 Asia

Fawi wandering river strapless dressicon by Mary Katrantzou

Balmain Top FW2013 Asia

Embellished tank top with Asian garden print iconby Balmain

LoL, Sandra

Photos: Via and © Sandra Bauknecht

The Latest Finds: Baby Pink Python


The pink snakeskin trend for accessories has been spreading like wildfire recently, especially the softer and dustier versions of the feminine shade. Think baby or powdered pink and set the tone for a new reptile-inspired season. Carry those must-haves to channel your own sophistication.

Below you can shop my favorites:

1 Python toe-cap lace-up sneaker iconby Lanvin
Holographic python medium Happy bag iconby Lanvin
Small Tonda printed python clutch by Diane von Furstenberg
4 Hera python bag iconby Roberto Cavalli

Roberto Cavalli has brought the reptile trend to the beauty industry with the launch of his newest fragrance: JUST CAVALLI. The cylindrical top of the bottle and the box are embellished with a pink snake motive accentuated with golden details.

Just_Cavalli_FragranceCREAMY FLORAL

Top note: Neroli
Middle note: Tahitian tiare flower
Base note: Palisander rosewood

Available as Eau de Toilette 30ml (CHF 59.00), 50ml (CHF 79.00) and 75ml (CHF 93.00)
Body Lotion 150ml (CHF 29.00) and Shower Gel 150ml (CHF 29.00)

Face of the advertising campaign is Georgia May Jagger, daughter of Mick Jagger and Jerry Hall, photographed by Mario Sorrenti. As sexy as the new scent…

LoL, Sandra

Photos: Courtesy of the Brands

Fashion Days Zurich 2011: Annabelle Award


“For the first time in my life I chose a man”, said Italian designer Roberto Cavalli when he proudly presented the winner of the 8th annabelle award last night in Zurich: 25-year-old Maxime Rappaz from Geneva. The young designer stood out with his innovative designs, the biggest eyecatcher: A bag that has its handels inside.

Innovative Winner

Each of the five young designers was asked to show two of their designs. Below you can see the creations of the other competitors who were all female. Maxime, the winner, has received a one-year internship with Roberto Cavalli in Florence.

La Cavallina

Leather Girl

draped lady

Classy Minimalist

Roberto Cavalli, who came directly from Japan, was completely jetlagged. I felt the same having just arrived from New York in the morning.
During the second night of the Fashion Days Zurich, he also presented his S/S 2012 Just Cavalli collection which I had seen already in Milan when I did the interview with him. The looks are powerful and if you like the style, you will be in love with these pieces. My favourite is the “Pocahontas” style dress with feathers worn by Leona Sigrist last night.


Just Cavalli1

Just Cavalli 2

Just Cavalli3

Just Cavalli4

Cavalli Models


The evening was also dedicated to our national fashion designers. During the Swiss Fashion night, the well established labels Little Black Dress, Aziza Zina, Javier Reyes and Van Bery presented their collections. Please enjoy my photo coverage below. For more information on the designers, just click on the highlighted name.


Designers Joanna Skoczylas and Eliane Diethelm created a very colourful look for next summer even that the name of their label Little Black Dress suggests something else. But the classy and feminine approach paid a wonderful tribute to the iconic LBD.

Aziza Zina

Morena Gonzales and Moritz Stoll of AZIZA zina paid homage to the Roaring Twenties (as also seen on the Gucci S/S 2012 catwalk). Some of the looks were reminiscent of Giorgio Armani‘s beautiful forays into women’s suiting. Swiss model Anouk Manser convinced the audience in a pretty cool turquoise dress.

Javier Reyes

Javier Reyes presented a well-crafted, beautiful collection, very wearable and feminine. Absolute eyecatchers were the fabrics that the Mexican-born designer chose for his S/S 2012 designs.

Van Bery

Van Bery is the label created by Berivan Meyer in association with Marie Tournant. Their joyful looks for S/S 2012 were colourful and sweet but not as strong as the other collections presented last night.

Below you can see some more impressions! Have fun! I am on my way to the Mercedes Benz Fashion Show…

LoL, Sandra

IMG_3323 Lisa Feldmann, editor-in-chief of annabelle magazine, in Just Cavalli and killer heels…

IMG_3547…by Barbara Bui.

IMG_3316Me front row…truly loving the attention…


My Look FDZ1

My look: Dress by Antonio Berardi, boots by Givenchy, bag by Céline and earrings by Chanel.

Photos: © Sandra Bauknecht

Meet the Man of the Year: Daniele Cavalli

Daniele and I 7Daniele Cavalli with me, Photo: Olivier Zahm

Meet the Man of the Year: Daniele Cavalli. The 25-year-old son of fashion designer Roberto Cavalli who is in charge for the Italian house’s men’s line, is not only an extremly interesting person, but also highly intelligent, down to earth, beautiful from the inside and outside, with a wonderful vision of life. I met with him recently in Milan and he told me some very interesting things, enjoy the interview.

After the huge success of your S/S 2012 presentation, which inspiration do you have for your next menswear F/W 2012 collection?

It will be an evolution, not a revolution, but totally different in the concept. The last two collections I did were connected with the same concept made in different ways. This is going to change for F/W 2012.

Summer gave me lots of inspirations. I turned off the phone and went to Africa. I started in Morocco and from there through the Sahara, where I met pythons and scorpios.
We went with camels, which was pretty adventurous. If something bites you, you die. You don’t have time to go to the hospital. We, my friend and I, travelled with Tuaregs. I love the nature and the adventure. And if you are respectful to death, nothing happens.

In the desert, you can’t have a fire. Fire would help you to scare away the animals. The gas lights we had were even worse as they attract the animals. At one point, I stood up, looked under my matress and found five scorpios. The Turag took a piece of a dry plant, and killed them like with it. Done! You have to know nature to survive. We slept in the dunes, totally covered because of the wind and the sand.

I know that you love music. Did you bring an instrument to the desert?

I brought a small guitar, a sort of mandolin.

Daniele Cavalli

What do you think about the relaunch of the Just Cavalli brand, of the S/S 2012 collection?

I liked the Just Cavalli show, strong and a very good way to relaunch the brand.

Do you prefer the main line Roberto Cavalli or Just Cavalli?

It depends on the show. The S/S 2012 Just Cavalli show was really good and it is great to see that the Just Cavalli brand is coming back. It is perfectly coordinating with the soul of the brand.

How would you dress women? Sexy like your father or more covered?

Both ways. I have my own vision of women. It would be really smart, chic and elegant. But believe me, I am telling you the truth,  I have never really thought about it. I think that I would do it the same as for the men, I would work on the tailoring, on the colours, on the  fabrics, always in a very chic way.

Yes, I would cover, but in the right way. I like to imagine. I love the dream. When the things are too obvious, it is less tempting. As a man, I like to use my imagination.

Have you studied fashion design?

I am lucky that I didn’t do it. I learnt everything from scratch.

Your father is Italian, your mother Austrian. What are you, more Italian or more Austrian?

I am really Italian, I am not Austrian. Actually, I am Florentine. My hometown is a historical, charming city, that sees the future, but keeps its treasure. Gardens, flowers, nature… Florence is a Rennaissance city. There is also something really dark. It is the contrast. My dark side is my blues side, meaning the music. I always like to work with opposite things and make them happen. Princess meets the bohemian women for example. I do it with everything in my life. The fusion is the most interesting part.

How is your German doing? Does your mum speak German with you?

No, my German is bad and whenever I saw my grandparents in Austria, it was pretty tough to understand them.

Was it a curse or a blessing to be Roberto Cavalli’s son?

Of course, a blessing! When I grew up, my father wasn’t popular at all. He was a pirate of the sea. We were riding in the summer times on small boots and he was protecting his family in the cabin when the weather and the waves were getting too tough. I like to see him like that. He is my father. The rest is part of the game.

Do all your siblings work in the company?
(Roberto Cavalli has two kids, Cristiana and Tommaso, from a previous marriage and three children, Rachele, Daniele and Robin with his wife Eva.)

My first sister Cristiana has a baby now and enjoys being a mom. She works just a little. My brother Tommaso takes care of the vineyards and trains the horses. Rachele designs the bags and has a little baby, too. My youngest brother Robin is still very young.


Would you like to move to another city? Or do you prefer staying in Florence?

Not to a big city like New York City. As for me, the horizon is so important, meaning it metaphorically, as a strong point of view. To live in a big city, it is always hard to see the horizon.

I am attracted to Asia. Moving for me would have more the impression of escaping. Maybe a girl would make me move (smiles).

Are you a heartbreaker?

Always, I live my life to break my heart. To be conscious, I fall in love with everything. What scares me in Milan sometimes is the following: I was at a friend’s party, where I said  hello to a lot of people. So many of them were asking me if I will be in Paris next week. And I was thinking why do they do that? People are working for Milan fashion week all year, and then they don’t even enjoy it because they are thinking already of the next thing. People are not appreciating what is in front of them. Florence saved me from such an attitude! I love Rome as well!

Do you like to do sports?

I was a sporty person. Until I was eigtheen, I was a soccer player, and I was a pretty good one. One day, I just put my shoes on the hook and stopped.
But I like sports. Your mind and your sould can only be powerful in a healthy body.

How do you see yourself in 25 years?

In the music industry. That is my biggest dream! I will do something important for myself in the music industry. I am ambitious. A great album would be amazing, producing, doing it by myself, but just if I am convinced of it. If I opened a music label, it wouldn’t be connected with the Cavalli universe, it would be mine.

Thank you, Daniele!

The photos are taken by André Saraiva for l’Offciel Hommes September 2011. The editorial is called “After Hours” and shows Daniele Cavalli in is his own collection of  S/S 2012. Tonight he will receive the GQ Man of the Year Award in Berlin and I am sure that for him there will be so much more to come…

LoL, Sandra

Meet the King of Bling: Roberto Cavalli

The King of Bling

Roberto Cavalli, the “King of Bling” and the “Godfather of the Animal Prints” (as he quoted himself), will be soon coming to Switzerland for the Fashion Days Zurich. He will attend not only to present his latest relaunched Just Cavalli S/S 2012 collection, but also as a guest judge for the 8th annabelle award which will take place on November 10th, 2011. The lucky winner will receive a one year internship with the Florence based house.

Wild animal prints, floral embellishments and leather patches? It is surely no other than Roberto Cavalli.
His flamboyant iconic mix is seen everywhere on the red carpet and not only on celebrities such as Jennifer Lopez, Madonna and Lenny Kravitz. Last year, he celebrated his fashion house’s 40th anniversary. During Milan Fashion Week, I was able to meet with the Italian designer (who gives his nationality a lot of credit, believe me!). Please enjoy the interview where he explains his secret of success and why the Swiss women love Italian men.

Roberto and I 4

You will be coming soon to Switzerland for the Fashion Days Zurich. Have you ever been to Zurich? Or will it be your first time in November?

Oh I have of course been to Zurich, many times! What a fantastic city, with a great energy. I love Switzerland, my wife Eva and I have a beautiful boutique in Saint Moritz, the nature is really stunning, it offers up a lot of inspiration.

What do you expect from the Fashion Days Zürich?

I’m really looking forward to taking part in Fashion Days Zürich, it’s a wonderful project. I expect to see new ideas from young, passionate people. I’m always curious about young talent and emerging designers, they are the people who will enter the industry with a fresh mind and new ideas, it’s essential to keep fashion alive!

One contestant will receive an internship with you in Florence. What are the main qualifications you are looking for?

The person will have to be positive, to come with a smile on their face and be driven by a strong desire to learn. I’m looking for raw talent that can be drawn out, and the curiosity of a young person. It’s so important that they are curious to learn!

Do you have an idea how your Swiss customers look like?

It’s not about how my customers look, the Cavalli world is not about looking a certain way! It’s about an attitude, it’s about personality, emotions! I think that my Swiss fans share in these beliefs the same way as my fans in Italy, China or Brazil do!

And oh yes, I had many Swiss girlfriends. The Swiss women are wonderful. They like the Italian men because we appreciate them. The Swiss men are sometimes too dry.


You have many different labels, from the main Roberto Cavalli line to Just Cavalli and Class by Roberto Cavalli, all three in different price levels. Dolce & Gabbana will be stopping their D&G brand and integrate it in the main line because they experienced that consumers didn’t understand the difference.
What about you? Is there a risk of confusion that costumers don’t understand why they should pay more for the Roberto Cavalli runway collection.

No, there is no risk of confusion. Obviously there are a lot of similarities, aesthetically speaking, between Just Cavalli and my main line Roberto Cavalli, because they are both part of the same Cavalli world and vision. But there are very basic and obvious differences too—Just Cavalli has a very young mindset— youthful, free-spirited, carefree! It’s an experimental line, and it obviously has a lower price point, so it’s more accessible than Roberto Cavalli mainline, whereas Roberto Cavalli is more formal and is taking the direction of demi-couture, the artisanship, the attention to detail—this is the fundamental difference.

What is your main target group for Just Cavalli? What is for you the big difference compared to the runway label?

Firstly, Just Cavalli is also a ’runway’ brand! We always have a fashion show, equally as beautiful as for the first line Roberto Cavalli. It may be the second line, but it is my baby! I love designing for Just Cavalli, because for me it’s a world of experimentation, researching and discovering new shapes, styles, materials! Just Cavalli has a ‘younger’ target, I don’t mean ‘younger’ as defined by an age bracket, but a younger philosophy—it’s very free-spirited and carefree and is highly competitive in the market segment known as “designer contemporary”. Roberto Cavalli is obviously accessible to a narrower target, it’s more exclusive of course, but I put the same amount of love and thought into each line.

The Just Cavalli line will not lose its distinct style codes, which have led to its success over the years, but will however evolve.

Is Just Cavalli your favourite son? Speaking in a metaphor.

I have three sons and two daughters. So yes, probably Just Cavalli is my fourth son. He is a little son but he grows very fast. But for a few seasons he was making me a little nervous, he was not good in school. But now, we have changed school and it is fantastic. And I enjoy teaching my son Just Cavalli. The DNA Cavalli is definitely there. He is a good son. He made so much progress.

Which do you think was the most important advice you have given your children? Did you expect them to work for you? Or did it happen naturally?

I got to where I am by believing in myself and following my heart, so I encourage my children to do the same! I’m proud to say that despite leading a very hectic life, I’ve always been very present in my children’s lives and I love having them around me in the work-place…but! If one day they decided “Papà, I want to leave the company to follow a different dream“, they would be leaving 100% with my blessing!

What was the most important thing you have learned from your father?

Sadly, I lost my father when I was very young, four years old. Luckily for me I had my outstanding mother! What a fantastic, marvellous person, a very brave woman … she was also present, by my side, in every phase of my life. She encouraged me to always carry on in the face of difficulties.


Please describe yourself in three words.

Passionate, curious, optimistic!

The secret of your success.

Self-belief and passion.

What makes a woman irresistible and sexy?

It’s not just how a woman looks but how she feels. I design my clothing so that the woman wearing my dress feels confident and believes in her beauty … it empowers her and this makes her fascinating. And last but not least the eyes. They are the soul of a woman!

Who is the most beautiful woman in the world? The sexiest woman alive?

Oh! What a question, there are too many beautiful women to name! Honestly I think that the sexiest woman alive is someone with great personality and strong character, a woman who knows who she is and what she wants! And, of course, she is even more beautiful if she is wearing a Roberto Cavalli dress, no?

Please tell us something about your iconic printed photographs on your materials!

Absolutely. That is my style. This makes the difference. Therefore they all like to copy me. I am the designer of the animal prints. Why? I remember one night in Kenia. I took a photo of a leopard. When you look at my prints, you can see the hair on it. Today, all the other designers copy me and do it my way. Two days ago, they opened a new store on Via della Spiga. So I thought: Ohmygod a new Cavalli store? It was no Cavalli, it was another designer but it looked completely Cavalli. My style is my style! This makes me nervous.

You have so many different projects and licenses, like the Just Cavalli restaurant in Milan, the Caffè Giacosa In Firenze, your own chocolats, vodka, wine, eyewear, clothes for dogs, childrenswear.
You have created a Cavalli universe? Where does the inspiration come from? Where are the limits?

Limits? This word is not in my vocabulary! The inspiration comes from everywhere, when you are a curious person you find everything you look for and more. I travel a lot, I’m a lover of the outdoors, of nature—my creations always have a connection to nature! What a beautiful world we live in!

Thank you Mr. Cavalli!

Roberto and I 2

My dear readers, I hope that you have liked the interview!

LoL, Sandra

Photos: © Sandra Bauknecht

At the Just Cavalli S/S 2012 Show

Roberto and I 4Roberto Cavalli gave me an interesting interview (coming soon)

The Just Cavalli S/S 2012 show marks the relaunch of the brand and can be best described as romantic, sweet, light and positive. From the photos of Roberto Cavalli’s travels, the prints are born: absolute protagonists of this very sexy collection, inspired as always by the wonder of nature. Overlapping the butterfly and floral print for example is an animalier motif, creating a very special effect.
The customers? Sunny girls who want to enjoy themselves, in the beautiful and unique time of their youth, who like to go to music festivals. Maxi dresses, gilets encrusted with metallic stitching and bags with small foulards and marmot tails like new good luck charms provide the perfect look. To shop Just Cavalli, please click here.

For my Swiss based readers, here is a taste of what is to come in November when Roberto Cavalli will present his Just Cavalli S/S 2012 collection during the annabelle awards (The winner will receive a one year internship with Roberto Cavalli in Florence.) for the second edition of the Charles Vögele Fashion Days Zurich. If you don’t want to miss the fashion show, tickets are available at

Here is your sneak preview of what you can watch live this fall in Zurich.

Hope that you will like it.

LoL, Sandra



















JC21bPhotos: © Sandra Bauknecht

Backstage at the Just Cavalli S/S 2012 Show

Einlad JC

Yesterday, I was able to go backstage before the Just Cavalli S/S 2012 show. Please enjoy those behind-the-scene photos. It will give you a wonderful insight into the fashion world and you might be amazed what is really going on behind the runway. Enjoy!



The runway one hour before the show was supposed to start!


The S/S 2012 looks and the moodboards.




Swiss television Glanz & Gloria interviewed me backstage.




Hair inspiration: Beautiful fishtail braids.

Haare Cav





Moroccanoil products were a must.


Makeup inspiration: Lots of glitter on the eyelids.




It wouldn’t be Cavalli, if there weren’t lots of accessories.


Cavallis arrive

Roberto & Eva Cavalli arrived around 45 minutes before the show.

Cavalli watching

Roberto watched the last rehearsal while enjoying a cigarette.


All photos from the show will be posted soon, so please stay tuned.

LoL, Sandra

Photos: © Sandra Bauknecht

Far Western Chic

Modern Cowgirl

Far Western chic is a must for next summer. Seen on the S/S 2010 runways were pretty cowgirls, pioneers of the prairies, lumberjack`s girlfriends and a new sort of trappers.

Especially D&G made a superb collection of versatile western references. The silhouettes were made of looks reminding me of Brigitte Bardot and Jeanne Moreau in the movie Viva Maria” or Penelope Cruz and Selma Hayek in the remake “Bandidas”. Denim, suede and eyelet were used – definite key elements for next season. But also Amerindian inspirations like navajo prints, lucky charms, feathers and tassels appeared along with stetsons, bandanas and broad belts. The inspirations and designs were numerous, only lassos and spurs were missing.

Denim Bandidas

Lumberjack`s plaid shirts were transformed into cocktail dresses and denim was pervasive in all sort of styles. Faded, worn out, mended mixed with cut-out suede, a sexy look that creates immediate seduction.

Come on, cowgirls, let`s go west!

LoL, Sandra


Black and White


Black and White is always a great combination and was seen a lot on the runways. For winter houndstooth was a must-have. For the upcoming summer 2010, stripes, op-art and graphic prints, some of them with an influence of ethnic ornaments, appeared on the runways.The top by Gareth Pugh is on sale at and a great buy for the next season.

If you are not so into patterns, you can also achieve the look with an accessory like a black belt on a white dress or combine the two colours by wearing a light top and a dark skirt or vice versa.


As I am a big fan of the nautical look, I like the black and white striped tops that you can order at They are cool, not so expensive and will give you an immediate fashion-update. Optional you can go for a black and white bag or shoes.


It is definitely a trend that you will have already in your closet. So start now and enjoy!

LoL, Sandra