In 1986, Polimoda was founded as Politecnico Internazionale della Moda in an agreement between two international centres of fashion, and two trailblazers of the industry. Shirley Goodman, the former Executive Vice President Emeritus at FIT in New York and Executive Director of the Educational Foundation for the Fashion Industries, and Don Emilio Pucci, Marchese di Barsento and founder of the famous Florentine brand Emilio Pucci, came together to create a centre for excellence in fashion education, to serve the city as much as the global industry. The first classes took place at Villa Strozzi in central Florence that year, and the Institute has only grown in strength and influence since then.
In 1992, a second campus dedicated to knitting and textile creation opened in Prato, and later in 2000, a third outpost specialising in design was inaugurated in Via Baldovinetti. Bringing together these two purposes in one unified space, the Polimoda Design Lab put down roots in its current location in Scandicci in 2015.
In 2006, Polimoda welcomed its new President, Ferruccio Ferragamo, who was joined by Linda Loppa as the Institute’s Director. This marked a new era for the Institute, and together in 2011, they inaugurated the campus at Villa Favard where the school remains today. In 2015, Polimoda hosted the IFFTI Conference (The International Foundation of Fashion Technology Institutes), when six historical locations in Florence were taken over by research, fashion curation and art direction.
In 2016, the author of the guiding theme of this conference, Danilo Venturi, was named the new Director of Polimoda. As an expert on contemporary fashion and fashion education with specialised experience in brand management and creative direction, Venturi is currently leading the Institute to ambitious new heights.