// by Gayatri Tadikamalla //
Since Alessandro Michele’s appointment as Gucci’s creative director in 2015, the brand’s aesthetic has been reinvented.
Michele’s past collections have contained colours, motifs and designs inspired by Gucci’s archives, re-done to appeal to younger consumers while maintaining the luxury of the brand. These elements remain present with the SS19 collection featuring androgynous silhouettes, playfully layered prints, luxe fabrics, and unique styling combinations. The spring/summer 2019 show, the last leg of a 3 show homage to Paris, took place at Paris’ famed Théâtre Le Palace- a venue described by Gucci as ‘the thread connecting almost a century of Parisian culture and nightlife’.
This collection took inspiration from the trends of the 70s and 80s with outfits featuring broad-shouldered blazers and vivid colours. 70s popular music was also alluded to with pieces in the collection paying homage to Dolly Parton through art pop prints on sweaters, as well as Jane Birkin singing during the runway show.
Described by Vogue as ‘Michele’s most sexually loaded collection to date’ this collection certainly pushed the boundaries of gender restrictions in fashion. For instance, the ensemble below features a super lowcut leotard with leather and rhinestone dance belt cups, adding a refreshing update to the traditional suit.
Fringe was abundant on Gucci’s runway, adding visual interest and hinting at a future trend for high street clothing brands. Whilst it was previously associated with country/ western apparel in the 1960s and 1970s, this updated take uses of various fabrics, lengths and colours to showcase the versatility of this feature. There was also a nod to the 2000s leopard print and snakeskin making regular appearances.
The collection also featured articles of brightly coloured clothing, referencing the bold looks of the 80s. The brighter pieces were often paired with clothing items in more muted tones or, in some cases, paired with items with colours just as eye-catching. From diamante crowns and mirrored dresses to embellished backpack straps, Michele showed that a little bit (or a lot) of sparkle can change an outfit.
As ever, Michele’s work showcases an eclectic combination of unique pieces, pushing fashion and the idea of what we consider to be wearable to the absolute limit. Last year, Gucci was crowned the ‘hottest brand’ of 2017 in the Lyst Index and it continues to remain at the forefront of a changing fashion industry. Terminating the use of animal fur in garments and a savvy use of social media have been some of the many moves which other brands have sought to emulate, demonstrating that Gucci is fast becoming a pioneer.