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Renzo Rosso on denim's potential

Renzo Rosso on denim's potential

Renzo Rosso is pleased that today's youth share his passion for denim.

The 60-year-old businessman is a hot name in fashion as the President of OTB Group, parent company of brands like Viktor & Rolf, Marni and Diesel, which he founded in 1978. His label is famous for its denim and having earned the nickname 'Jeans Genius' by journalist Suzy Menkes, Renzo is still just as enamoured with the material now as he was back in the day.

"When I was younger I was so much in love with this product, but at that time denim was not quite so popular," he recalled to WWD. "I discovered that jeans meant comfort, it meant rebellion, it meant blue skies, green gardens; it meant a nice life, a weekend. When I discovered this, I stopped a moment to think and said, OK, this product can never go out of style in the world and that the more we were going to grow, the more we were going to increase our growth. Now when I talk with the young kids I see the same love for denim."

Renzo began stitching jeans as a teenager, then studied industrial textile manufacturing. He has a lot more responsibility now as he divides his attention between the brand he created and other big fashion houses, but no task is ever the same.

"All these different very important designers give me a totally different feeling because each one has a completely different lifestyle from each other," he smiled. "They are all headquartered in different places and I never put them together because I don’t want to contaminate them. Each one must believe in its own lifestyle. From each of these lifestyles we receive a different vision, and when I go to talk to one designer, I have influences from another."

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