Some brands just have it. An x-factor that makes them synonymous with luxury for the entire spectrum of customers. From teenagers who aspire to one day wear the brand, to Wall Street execs shelling out thousands for loafers and even celebrities privy to an exclusive tier of luxury, everyone wants a piece. Gucci, founded as a small family-run business in Florence, is one such label—recognizable to even the most entry-level customer, but not overlooked by the seasoned fashion cognoscenti. That wasn’t always the case, though. Since the label’s inception in the early 1920s, Gucci has undergone numerous changes, transforming from a premium leather goods maker to one of the largest—and most recognizable—luxury brands on the planet. Through hardships, corporate mergers and a slew of creative directors, Gucci is now part of an elite group of brands—Louis Vuitton, Hermés, Chanel—that not only boasts billions in sales, but concurrently demand worldwide respect.

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