Six months ago, when Gucci's Alessandro Michele decided to deviate from the antiquated fashion calendar, he wasn't sure exactly where he was headed. The seismic, pandemic-induced changes to the industry urged him to "regain a new cadence, closer to my expressive call," as he phrased it in his manifesto, "Notes From The Silence," in May. What he imagined was a future for Gucci that presented just twice a year (as opposed to five times), and one that told stories with "irregular, joyful, and absolutely free chapters, which will be written blending rules and genres." For Gucci's Spring 2021 collection, Michele delivers on that promise, with seven short films (entitled “OUVERTURE of Something that Never Ended") that display an endless trove of maximalist pieces.
Since March, there have been hundreds of virtually-rendered fashion presentations — but GucciFest is far more than just another fashion flick. With help from Cannes-winning director Gus Van Sant, the duo's filmic brainchild features seven narratives, all of which take care not to "assert," according to Michele. "There is no proclamation. No declaration. But evocation instead ... After all, that is where the enchantment of life lies: in the infinite variety of its possibilities," he said in the press release. Each chapter's title and contents are, to some degree, apropos of our new normal ("A Nightly Walk;" "At The Post Office") — and feature throngs of fashionable commoners living out ordinary, everyday moments.
Of course, in true Gucci fashion, this is not without a few familiar faces. The brand invited some of its dearest friends to join the mini-series, and bedecked them in fashions new and true to their personal styles. In denim short-shorts and a sporty pink tee, Gucci muse Harry Styles kicks gravel around a garden, musing over the phone about the trials and tribulations of the creative process. Then, in a flat cap and track pants, Billie Eilish plays with robot dogs through a TV screen in another Gucci-clad spectator's home. In a pleated dress and a wide-brimmed hat, Florence Welch digs through racks upon racks of "vintage" wares at a secondhand store.
Between all of these mundanities, the fashion is there, and it's stirring. The notably gender-neutral assortment features sumptuous sweatshirts, co-ord suits, and slick evening dresses, doing justice to all five fashion seasons at once. In varying colors and lengths, socks are a constant, styled with horsebit loafers and sling-back heels in equal measure. Syncing with Kamala Harris' glorious suit moment seamlessly, Michele tucked in several pussybow collars, across ankle-length frocks and suited looks alike.
Carryalls were omnipresent as well — top-handle totes and crossbody flap bags in particular, which are on track to wipe out "micro" styles from seasons past. As is Gucci's DNA, nostalgia is always a conspicuous feature, infused this time throughout '60s-era car coats and '70s-worthy oversized frames. Of course, there was no shortage of color — with strawberry reds, marigold yellows, and ochre hues reigning supreme throughout each look.
Of the venture, Michele shared in the release: "It was a reckless leap for me, though necessary." Browse the best looks ahead, and catch the short films in entirety here.