Ellesse – A Company History

Ellesse – A Company History


In 1959 ellesse is founded in Perugia, Italy by Leonardo Servadio. The name is take from his initials L&S – pronounced elle-esse.

In the early days important decisions where made over a game of table tennis. Leonado Servadio and Franco D’Attoma, Leonardo’s brother-in-law would play with the winner getting to implement their idea.


EEtore and Giorgina were the ellesse company pets. We’re not talking about dogs or cats here – these two were penguins! EEtore and Giorgina would appear and take to the slopes at most ski tournaments’, but sadly when they began to destroy Leonardo Servadio’s garden they were donated to the Verona Zoo.


In 1973 Vogue Magazine in Italy featured the ellesse “Curieuse” and labeled them “the sexiest possibility for the summer”. These wonderful looking pants were loose and open at the sides and put on like a sarong with a bra top! You can still view the sample of the “Curieuse” at the museum in Perugia. Put on this on the beach and be admired by all.


An unfamiliar tennis player at the time, called Boris Becker signed with ellesse at the age of just 15. He was considered to have outstanding potential and this was true, Becker proceeded to go on to win Wimbledon in 1985 and 1986 sporting none other than ellesse.

In the early 90s ellesse signed an not known 9 yr old named Anna Kournikova.

Who would have guessed she would end up being the sexiest female in the world, voted by FHM in 2002!


Nick Love’s 2006 neo-gangsta film ‘The Business’ featured ellesse heavily. It was a hefty reminder of the 80s casual style and brought back the infatuation of branded sportswear which everyone loves! ellesse yet again sparked love among people when a heritage track top was seen in Nick Love’s 2009 ‘Casuals’ classic movie “The Firm”. A scene in which a youthful casual reasons with his dad that he must have the most expensive track-top in the store (an ellesse Villas) because “it’s what all the chaps are sporting” signifies just how sought after this product was and even now is!


ellesse is 50! In 2009 ellesse celebrated their 50th Birthday in Rome, Italy, the home of the brand. ellesse rubbed shoulders with the likes of Lily Cole, Gemma Arterton, Pat Cash, Eley Kishimoto and Jade Jagger. They all partied the night time away listening to music by NYPC and Crazy P with cupcakes and champagne!


In 2000 ellesse hooked up with Danish brand Wood Wood in 2010 to create a High Summer collection consisting of heritage zip-throughs, trendy sweatshirts, highly branded t-shirts and chino pants all topped off with lightweight pumps. The collaboration captures the Scandinavian Road style roots of Wood Wood combined with the 80’s British culture of ellesse.

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