Turning 100 is a big deal, and Gucci has marked that coming of age moment this year with a major exhibition in the brand’s ancestral home of Florence, a takeover of Hollywood Boulevard for a fashion show and the launch of a conceptual online store called Gucci Vault that stocks vintage pieces as well as works by emerging designers.
The other good thing about the centennial? There have been plenty of capsule collections and product launches this season to satisfy the needs of avid shoppers.
Among them is the Gucci 100 capsule drop in October which sees the brand expressing its importance in the world of pop music. Lyrics from songs that name-dropped Gucci are turned into slogans on leisurewear fits.
These images from Gucci’s The Hacker Project were shot by Harley Weir and appropriated an old Balenciaga advertising campaign.
Then there is the blockbuster Hacker project with Balenciaga which was released in November and redefined the meaning of hype and collaborations. Billed as a co-branded exercise, the response from fans and fashion collectors alike was unequivocal, with merchandise said to almost sell out even before the official launch on November 15.
That outing saw Gucci’s creative director Alessandro Michele tinkering with the concept of appropriation and authenticity by mashing up Demna Gvaslia’s design codes with his own such as having the iconic GG monogram canvas printed with Balenciaga’s name.
Speaking of the GG monogram, a special edition of the motif has been upsized as the Jumbo GG this year. This “maximised” pattern make their mark on selected apparel in The Hacker project and also pop up on other small leather goods such as the best-selling GG Marmont belt, the Bamboo bag and totes.
The Jumbo GG motif is a maximalist version of Gucci’s monogram.
To further Gucci’s obsession with the horse-riding world, Michele has put his own stamp on equestrian chic. (The horsebit hardware was introduced in the ‘50s and founder Guccio Gucci was known for using the used the motif as he was smitten with the English racing set).
The nod to horse racing comes in the form of jodhpurs, riding jackets, riding boots, jockey caps and harnesses — the latter adding a wicked fetishistic aspect when paired with tailored looks.
True to Michele’s penchant for pairing heritage and modernity, he also riffs on the vibrant hues and patterns seen on the flags and jackets of horse jockeys. That inspiration manifests as checks, stripes and circles in loud – almost highlighter – hues on silk tops and bags like the Jackie hobo bag and Diana tote.
Up next for the brand is a sequel to its collaboration with The North Face. Dubbed as “Chapter 2”, this sophomore outing is tailored for gorpcore fiends with a co-ed collection comprising ready-to-wear, hiking boots, puffer jackets and soft accessories.
Picking up from where the first series left off in January, the collaboration sees a more nostalgic flair in the designs. Several bomber jackets and gilets rehash The North Face’s archive designs from the ‘90s and stamped with prints from Gucci’s own archives.
In the gallery ahead, we spotlight some of the items you can cop to Gucci-fy your wardrobe.