Gucci has always been all about the ‘70s, and it’s become evident that new creative director Alessandro Michele is keen to carry on that tradition. But, instead of Studio 54 and Urban Cowgirl, Michele’s version is more Dazed & Confused-meets-Jan Brady. Stoner-nerd? Meet super-nerd.
The problems with fit — which I mentioned last season — seem to have been resolved, and while there were plenty of moments that seemed like too obvious a riff on a past designer’s collection (the Christopher Kane flower pistol embroidery, those No. 21 knotted mules, the Chanel Paris-Salzburg black neck ties and cardigan skirt sets), all combined, they still created a fantastical, cohesive story. Whether that speaks to Michele’s strength as a stylist and curator rather than a designer remains to be seen. You can look to Hedi Slimane for precedent, who’s taken a similar approach at Saint Laurent and catapulted that brand far into the black.
A traditional Japanese embroidered tiger is paired with an English rose and cornflower blue French chiffon. A Miss Havisham-style dressing gown is matched with a pair of quilted mules stolen straight from Joni Mitchell’s feet as she lounged under the eucalyptus trees in the backyard of her Laurel Canyon bungalow. That beret she’s wearing? Borrowed from your own closet that summer you blew through the entire Dune anthology. Seen in tandem with last season’s spring collection, this resort collection pinpoints some of the elements that Michele plans on making part of his Gucci signature: sideways chevron stripes, pleated A-line skirts, flora and fauna embellishments, and lace — all topped off with glasses and a beret. Commit those details to memory.
Some of it is even downright ugly — like the extra-long lace embroidered jumpsuit with the red trim and folk art patchwork — in a way that only the most hardcore jolie-laide fans could appreciate. But, it’s that willingness to throw a wart into the mix that makes this collection feel braver than any fit-and-flare that’s come down the runway, and for more interesting at that.
The coolest girl in the room would have never won that title in high school. Click through to see the 62 looks that adopt the former definition of cool.