Gucci’s modern-retro gamble pays off for the Fall 2015 collection

09-halfAlessandro Michele was promoted from head accessories designer at Gucci to his new post as the label’s creative director in late 2014. The news that he would replace Frida Giannini as creative director met with little surprise given the receding sales at Gucci.  But many were surprised, at what would account for a complete change in direction, unlike any the house has seen.

In 2014, sales at Gucci, which accounted for around 30% of Kering’s revenues, fell 3.5% on the year in the first nine months, and Kering stated, in its final quarterly report, that there were no signs of an improvement.

Gucci Factory, circa 1950s
Gucci Factory, circa 1950s

Reports of the decline included feedback from clients who felt the brand lacked distinction and exclusivity. This feedback, tied to the companies strategy to move away from the famous Gucci logo branded by Gucci for over 4 decades, marked the reasons for the termination of both the CEO and creative director by Kering.

The Gucci Fall 2015 collection, under newly promoted Alessandro Michele, invariably drew a spotlight.  Michele took a gamble and created a fresh line up of modern-retro ’70s-inspired, relaxed luxury designs which impressed the critics and fans alike.

“I wanted to bring my creative vision to life through this advertising campaign, the first one featuring my collections,” Michele shared. “I decided to go back to the streets. I believe there is a fluid and organic contamination that exists between the catwalk and the street. Fashion, especially ready-to-wear, is something real, made for everyday and for everyone to express their own creativity and individuality.”

In addition Alessandro Michele notably returned the interlocking GG logo to the Fall 2015 accessories.

The Gucci’s Fall 2015 campaign featured the logo printed handbags with ruffled frocks and fur-lined loafers.

Photographer Glen Luchford captured models Tessa Charlotte Bruinsma, Tobias Lundh, Lia Pavlova, and Sven de Vries dressed in the eye-catching designs in the urban backdrop of Los Angeles — a place of “unexpected events, rifts, remnants and amnesias” and a place for “mingling of reality and desire,” Michele said in a press release.

Gucci Fall 2015 Campaign

Gucci Fall 2015 Campaign

The release of the new collection was met with an increase in sales, the first time Gucci has seen growth in almost two years, up 4.6 percent on a comparable basis in the second quarter.

The company said that the Chinese tourists in Japan and Western Europe, as well as increased discounting in China of pre-Michele merchandise, contributed to the growth.

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