Oh my gold: the Italian fashion house adored by models

Posted on March 30 2021

“Oh my gold!”  


This now-iconic line was said by supermodel Naomi Campbell in the advertisement of the iconic Citroen C3 car, a collaborative design between Citroen and Pinko. Her words were intended to be a nod to the Italian fashion house’s sense of luxury, writ large in the design of the sleek and compact car. 


The vehicle’s exterior was highlighted by gold accents of the door handles, chevrons and mirrors, as well as the elegant transparent tail lights. The seats were upholstered in pearl-colored leather with stitching in gold thread. Fitting for a collaboration with a fashion house that had built its reputation on creating bold and beautiful clothes for women with a fun approach to style.


Naomi Campbell in the C3 advertisement
Credit: Naomi Campbell in the C3 advertisement. Photo courtesy of Citroen.


That was in 2008, following Campbell’s earlier work with Pinko in SS 2005, and the supermodel remained a fan of the brand, later going on to front their SS 2012 campaign.


Pinko Naomi CampbellCredit: Naomi Campbell in SS 2012. Image courtesy of Pinko.


And no wonder, Pinko, one of the youngest of the prominent Italian fashion houses, is designed for independent, strong and sexy women. Pinko women are feminine and powerful, and use their fashion choices to express the many facets of their womanhood. As a result, Pinko fashion is unique, eclectic and contemporary, yet appeals to women around the world. 


Naomi Cambell in Pinko for SS 2005
Credit: Naomi Cambell in Pinko for SS 2005. Image courtesy of Pinko. 


The brand was founded in the late ’80s in the north Italian town of Fidenza by husband-and-wife couple Pietro Negra and his wife Cristina Rubini. It remains a family business; Negra is still the CEO and over the years, the couple’s daughters Cecilia and Caterina also joined the company, working in the communication and creative departments respectively.


The collaboration with the major car manufacturer was a milestone for the brand, but for years prior to that it had been making waves in stylish circles globally. 


When Pinko was conceived, it was based around the idea that fashion should be ever-changing and accessible – what we would call “fast fashion” today. New lines were launched almost weekly, keeping the brand well ahead of rapidly changing trends, but the company soon released it wasn’t a sustainable model. 


They moved to a “semi-planned” model that saw them slot into the space between fast fashion and the traditional seasonal launches, and it was a huge success. Fans of Pinko loved the regular updates to their wardrobes, delighted by the brand’s high-quality and on-trend pieces. Franchise stores were soon opened around Italy, followed by the rest of Europe, and later other parts of the world. 


As the brand matured, it started to release core collections, consisting of pieces that were designed to be more timeless and form the basis of a wardrobe that could be augmented by their other, more-trend focused pieces. 


Elle MacPherson modelled for PinkoCredit: Elle MacPherson modelled for Pinko in AW 2004. Photo courtesy of Pinko. 


The line has drawn on the talents of many different contributors to bring their talents to the fashion over the years. Designers who have created collections for Pinko include Mark Fast, Alessandra Facchinetti, Marina Spadafora, Viviana Volpicella and Nicola Brognano, while acclaimed photographers who have worked with the brand include the likes of Terry Richardson, Steven Klein and Xavi Gordo.


And, of course, a who’s who of the fashion world – including models, singers and actors – have all modelled the clothing.


As well as Campbell, Elle MacPherson, Carmen Kass, Eva Herzigova, Alessandra Ambrosio, Kate Bosworth, Sara Sampaio, Barbara Palvin, Stella Maxwell, Ann Ward and Mariah Carey have all been photographed in Pinko. 


Alessandra Ambrosio fronted the SS 2014 collectionCredit: Alessandra Ambrosio fronted the SS 2014 collection. Image courtesy of Pinko. 


Today, the piece that Pinko is most famous for is the iconic Love bag. The Love bag comes in a fabulous array of different coloured and textured leathers, and is instantly recognisable thanks to the signature metal buckle with the brand’s Love Birds.


Pinko iconic Love bag
Credit: A recent interpretation of the iconic Love bag. Image courtesy of Amandine Hach. 


Pinko continues to produce high-quality and thrilling clothes that women around the world seek out to express themselves through fashion. 

 Oh my gold indeed. 



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