Frida Giannini’s collection for Gucci’s spring/summer 2014 was as aggressively youthful as almost any show in London. The audience was offered in a sporty new direction with a dark disco Gucci glamour. It was interesting to saw Giannini’s new territory, when she put a key elements from what’s happening on the street with the elevation of athletic clothes for a house long known as a purveyor of equestrian gear.
The designer’s inspiration translated into loose silhouettes, drop waists, sheer triangle bra tops, mesh T-shirt and baggy track-pants, all of which were done in a dark palette. As a counterpoint to the sports references, Giannini looked at the Art Nouveau illustrations of Erté for more Art Deco motifs, and thinking about Erté’s Eastern influences she triggered a revival of harem pants, caftans, and relaxed louche crossover jackets, and a silhouette with an emphasis on the hip.
Since the last Menswear SS14 collection, Gucci’s emphasis on heavy-breathed, haute athletic wear makes good commercial sense. Because for anyone born after 1990, sportswear – tracksuits and trainers and the newly in-fashion sweatshirt – is the vernacular of clothing. So a generation that has grown up will likely feel more at ease buying into a Gucci track-pant than a full-blown evening dress. After all, attention must be paid when other world’s biggest luxury labels take such a quirky tack on the demands of the rapidly evolving younger market. (Text Teuku Ajie)