Who is Francesca Sanna Sulis of Google's Doodle |  iO Woman

C.hi today she finds herself surfing the web and sees the profile of a female personality significant for the world of fashion: the Google doodle of 11 June, in fact, is entirely dedicated to Donna Francesca Sanna Sulis.

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THEl Google Doodle of June 11 (Photo: Google).

A silhouette in old-fashioned dresses in different shades of green, with a white drape in her hand. In the background, the name of the search engine embroidered with needle and thread, surrounded by blackberries and small bugs. History buffs will have no trouble recognizing the Tsarina Catherine the Great in his most famous portrait (signed by Alexander Roslin and dating from 1780). But few will know that the dress he wears was made by Donna Francesca Sanna Sulis. The Sardinian designer, protagonist of the 18th century, is unknown to most people, although she was one of the first to challenge gender stereotypesthanks to his passionate work.

The Lady of the Mulberries

Better known as the Lady of the mulberries – just the plants that frame the woman in Google’s Doodle – she cut her teeth using the silk produced by the shrubs to design refined clothes, destined to dress the nobles of all Europe in 1700. Why is it the protagonist on June 11th? Simple: Sulis was born exactly 306 years ago, in 1716, in a small village in the south of Sardinia. She is the daughter of wealthy owners of farms and cattle ranches, it is there that she learned to manage the cultivation of moraceae and to reap all the benefits of the case.

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Alexander Roslin, Portrait of Catherine II, 1780s, oil on canvas, 160 × 121 cm, Hermitage, St. Petersburg (Photo: Wikimedia).

The marriage at the age of 19 with Pietro Sanna Lecca, jurisconsult of Cagliari, and a shared passion for the family business of Quartucciu. Soon, the young Donna Francesca finds herself supervising theentire silk production chain: the precious leaves, in fact, are the main nourishment of worms, the animals raised to produce the yarn. On the one hand, he makes sure that the animals have enough “food”, on the other hand he is dedicated to extracting threads from cocoons.

A life for silk

Entrepreneur, stylist, benefactress. In a short time after taking over the business, she invests in modern frames and transforms the estate into a extremely state-of-the-art production site for the time. And of course he could not have known that his company would revolutionize the entire fashion industry. In an age when ladies wore only uncomfortable, stiff and heavy clothes, the novel designer begins to create clothes in mulberry silk, light, elegant, comfortable.

Google turns 23: a journey to the origins of the

Google turns 23: a journey to the origins of the

His models quickly became very popular, appreciated by princesses and high-ranking women, from the ladies of the House of Savoy to the Tsarina Catherine the Great. Francesca also collaborates with Count Giorgio Giulini, a Lombard nobleman, with whom she organizes one of the first real fashion shows in history, with her dresses worn by models instead of mannequins. And she invents a particular female headdress: on cambusciuin brocade, the must-have accessory for the wealthy girls of the time, which still today represents a fundamental element in some traditional Campidano dresses.

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The sketches of the Google Doodle of June 11 (Photo: Google).

Not only a pioneer of comfortable and chic fashion. Donna Francesca Sanna Sulis is also remembered as one of the first supporters offemale empowerment. In her spare time, she empowers the women in her community, employed in the company. The creation of a vocational school allows hundreds of women not only to work and create their own independence, but also to learn the arts of spinning, weaving, tailoring and even botany. After completing the courses, the pupils received a free frame, as well as a hefty salary. Also, just before leaving, in 1808 Donna Francesca Sanna Sulis donated all her possessions to the poor of Muravera.

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Where to rediscover the personality of this extraordinary woman?

Not just on Google’s Doodle: her historical clothes can be found on display at the Donna Francesca Sanna Sulis Museum in Muravera (Cagliari) and at the State Hermitage Museum in St. Petersburg, where the famous portrait of Catherine the Great, his first fan, is kept. And today, thanks to Google’s Doodle, the ranks of her admirers are destined to grow.


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