Italian tailor Leonardo Servadio founded ellesse in 1959, creating a brand that was not only inspired by his initials – L.S – but also his values. When he couldn’t find the skiwear he wanted, the only solution was to design and manufacture his own. Before long, ellesse had taken the ski world by storm, bringing style to the slopes and boldly moving skiwear from plain and functional to fun and fashionable.
The brand’s winter sports status became a passport to the world of tennis and their iconic half ball logo – a combination of two ski tips and the cross section of a tennis ball – was born. ellesse became one of the first brands in history to feature their logo on the outside of their clothes, in a bold move that changed the sportswear scene and caused brands worldwide to follow suit.
Innovation and experimentation were at the core of Servadio’s vision – an ethos that ellesse still implement today in their Heritage, Italia, Sport and Tennis collections. From sponsoring Chris Evert, Guillermo Vilas and Boris Becker in the 1980s, brand ambassadors have gone on to include tennis stars Anna Kournikova, Monica Pugh and Feliciano Lopez – and now Cameron Norrie, the UK’s no. 2 tennis player. In other sports, the 1982 FIFA World Cup winning Italian football team were also sponsored by ellesse, as was runner Gianni Poli, winner of the 1986 New York Marathon. Outside of the sporting world, chart topping singer Anne-Marie has gained ellesse worldwide exposure as the face of the Heritage collection. Embodying a sense of fun and play, ellesse continues to bring colour, passion and creativity to fashion forward individuals on and off the sports field.