Gucci Appraisal Anna Savchenko Student ID: 201167586 Fashion in Context DESN1375 Word Count: 1637e
Contents Introduction -3 Gucci fall 2017 -4 Look 4 -4 The Pantsuit -5 Chinoiserie -5 Paper Parasol -6 The Accessories -6 Gucci spring 2018 -7 Look 66 -7 The Jumpsuit -8 The Sunglasses -8 Pumps and Socks Fashion -8 Conclusion -9 Reference List -10 Bibliography -11 Image Reference 11
Nowadays, with the influencing of the last decades’ fashion, the fashion of the 21st century has rapidly changed. Each season it could be more and more seen that designers have been looking back at the previous trends and styles in order to take some inspiration, so the collections would have a “vintage feel”. Such concepts as vintage and retro have already been taken an important position in the fashion industry, with the risen popularity on secondhand clothing. Despite this, the past trends are used as a foundation of the modern collections, they are usually re-worked by the fashion brands, bearing in mind the changes in fashion technologies and changes in culture. The appraisal will examine the recent Gucci collections, which are now target on the 60s, 70s and 80s decades’ trends. Alessandro Michele, the creative director of brand Gucci, mentioned in his interview: “I need to know that something was there before. I want to touch it.” (Vogue, 2018). Focusing on the f/w 17 and s/s 18 collections, the inspirational trends of the outfits would be find out and the way it was updated for the 21st century trends would be researched.
Gucci AW17 Collection Look 4 The outfit from the Gucci Fall/Winter 2017 collection is a combination of the trends and arts of the different decade and even centuries. The Alessandro Michele “The Alchemist’s Garden” collection is an extraordinaire combination of the Asian 17th and 18th centuries culture with Hollywood and New York’s romanticism of the 70s and 80s of the previous century, which creates a new, but with a glimpse of past trends, vision of the modern fashion. The look number 66 is a synonymous with the 70s representation of the serious women.
The pantsuit The women’s pantsuit history is an important part of the fashion history, it has it connection with the women power and their liberation. By the 1930 the era of the working women had begun and with Second World War the percent of the employed had rose dramatically. So, the need for a power suit became even more obvious. According to the Erica Euse (2016), “Emboldened by this, designers continued to take Chanel's controversial signature suit and women's desire to wear pants one step further by bringing the two together. French designer Marcel Rochas is credited with originating the idea of pairing pants with women's suits in 1932”. By the 1970s, the women wearing the suit was the expected action, but on the other side of the coin it was still criticised as an attempt to imitate the men’s style. But with the help of the film “Annie Hall” where “carefree women who fought society's gender ideals by wearing men's clothing in a flippant, plain way” (Komar, 2016). So, the vision of this problem has changed from the imitating to the confidence. Gucci has created the similar silhouette of the suite of the 70s, but has changed the materials list and by using the silk material and adding the printing to the fabric, which has created the new vision of the pantsuit. Whereas in the 70s the suits were made in classic working colours (grey, black, navy) with the use of the wool material (Komar, 2016).
Chinoiserie The idea of “The Alchemist’s Garden” collection was to “reference to the 17th and 18th century chinoiserie” (Mower, 2017). Chinoiserie (chinois) is translated from the French as Chinese (V&A, 2016). The inspiration was taken from art and design of the Asian countries. In the 18th century, when British started to transport silk and lacquerware from the China and Japan, it became very popular and fashionable to use this kind of prints in the interior design in order to imitate the East culture style. The prints were considered to have floral, landscapes, dragons and pagodas images which has the certain meanings. The Gucci’s pantsuit has the different image of the chinoiserie style, Michele decided to leave just the combination of the different flowers, without any adding of the spirit animals.
Paper parasol Another noticeable accessory in this outfit to consider is a parasol. Paper umbrellas originally came from ancient China and then spread around the Asia (J&h umbrella manufacturers, 2018) almost 4000 years ago. Originally it was produced from the natural materials such as “tree leaves, eucalyptus and palm branches” (Umbrella History, 2018), but by the time the natural materials was changed on the “animal skins, cloth and paper” (Umbrella History, 2018). It was an exclusive type of accessory in 9th century BC China and it was used just by royalty of that time. The reason it was so popular was fashion, in high society in Asian countries it was very important to have pale skin, since it was regarded as the most significant aspect of female attractiveness. Paper parasols also have some symbolistic meaning; the red umbrella is used on the wedding in Japan and China in the way of protection of the bride from the evil spirits, whereas the purple umbrella means the longevity. Michele, decide to recreate the Chinese traditional garment by adding a unique graffiti ‘Tomorrow is yesterday’ on the one side of the umbrella but despite this still has left a traditional floral pattern.
The accessories The variation of the accessories which are presented on the Gucci’s outfit, has a strong connection with the goth movement which has started in the beginning of the 1980s. To them were inherent the combination of the big amount of the accessories such as massive rings, chockers and gigantic necklaces. The rings represented the death theme, by imaging the skull and bones. Whereas, Alessandro Michele has changed the image of the rings in his collection by using animal’s heads. Another accessory to consider, is a headband. By the 1980s, in the time of the fitness, “the terry cotton sweatbands” (Shiller, 2013) were used as a workout accessory. But in Gucci outfit it was presented as an everyday accessory.
Gucci SS18 Collection Look 66 Looking at Gucci spring/summer 2018 collection, it could be clearly seen, that Alessandro Michele took his inspiration from the Sir Elton John’s “70s glam rock stage clothes” (Mower, 2017). Look 66, has a reflection to that decade, the model is wearing a 1970/80s jumpsuit, which was produced in the disco era style, with the unique sunglasses. The outfit “was full of glam and all the recognizable multi-everything orchestration of retooled vintage” (Mower, 2017).
The sunglasses In 2017, Gucci by taking the inspiration from the “70s color and form”, has created the Hollywood Forever eyewear collection, which is supplement with a new pair of glasses each season. The outfit also includes a pair of glasses which made in “ivory acetate frame with red teardrop detail enriched with a crystal” (Gucci, 2017). For the creating the s/s 18 collection the inspiration was taken from Sir Elton John stage outfits collection. He is well known for his unique costumes and the big range of the colourful and oversized glasses which he made popular in the 70s, these was also transformed to the nowadays life in the way of starting to use the unique sunglasses in experimental frames and style to the everyday basis.
Pumps and socks fashion
The trend of wearing ankle sock with pumps or ballerinas came from the 1930s, when the sport culture was rising in popularity and made its impact on the fashion industry of that time. At the beginning, it was worn as “simultaneously protection of the feet from friction, whilst also enabling the legs to be bare and cool” (Mearns, 2017), but then it became trend and started to be worn on everyday basis. And it was redirected to the nowadays life, by adding some new materials in the production of socks, such as shiny lurex and elastane, but also creating different prints and patterns.
The jumpsuit The trend on the jumpsuits were considered in the end of the 70s and the beginning of the 80s, where the image of the jumpsuit changed from the unstructured “outfit for parachutes and skydivers” (Bucci, 2016) to the structured and elegant wide leg pants suit. But as for Gucci outfit, the inspiration was taken from the both variations of the jumpsuit as it has short sleeve shirt (80s) and wide structured legs inspired by the 70s. Jumpsuits were not just the most comfortable everyday clothing but also a fashion decision of the pop-culture icons such as ABBA. It used to have ruffled trousers, which were quite popular in the 70s, and it was created in the metallic materials, which was updated for the more wearable materials of the 21st century such as silk or wool (Herald, 1992). Also, one of the main components of the jumpsuit is belt. Whereas, the fashion on the jumpsuits were in the 70s, the wide belt style came into the fashion in the 50s. The purpose of the belt was “to nip-in the silhouette like a corset in order to enhance the hips” (Mearns, 2016). It was designed in the matching colours with an eye to hide the belt but at the same time emphasize the waistline.
Conclusion To conclude with, by taking the inspiration from the previous different private arts collections and historical moments of the previous fashion, Alessandro Michele has created the collection which is unique and interesting for the modern spectacular. The design of the brand Gucci is quite experimental and it would appeal just to the target consumer of the brand. The garments of the collection were produced with the contemporary image but in the same time with the use of the previous trends as a foundation in a way of the silhouette and design. To my mind, it is very important to maintain the history and modernity in the design is an important component of the fashion industry, which will gain to the new vision of the modern collection.
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