This is the last chapter. Or as creative director Alessandro Michele calls it: Gucci Epilogue. In the final part of Michele's triptych, he completely pulled back the curtains to show the makings of the cruise 2021 campaign. The campaign and its proceeding lookbook (seen above) are not modelled by Gucci's often favoured roster of oddly beautiful models, but instead, by the very team that designed the collection.
"It’s a process of role reversal, once more. The distances shorten. The creative act becomes exhibition praxis," Michele expresses.
This final experiment of subverting the usual notions of what fashion is, also marks the beginning of a new chapter in Gucci's history. No longer will the fashion house produce more than two runway collections a year. No longer will there be collections designed specifically for a season. And no longer will there be unnecessary noise and wasteful consumption.
The end is here. But the beginning is looking ever promising.
Look and feel: Not much can be said other than cruise 2021 is classic Michele. There are the seemingly disparate and incongruous elements that are (quite beautifully) thrown together on a single look, a lot of accessories (but also rather pared back on jewellery this time around), and a constant conversation of traditional masculinity versus new-age femininity.
While it isn't part of the design process, having Gucci's very own design team modelling the pieces is brilliant. The diversity across body type, race, colour and age is refreshing and celebrates the non-traditional elements that make up Gucci under Michele.
Favourite looks: There's so many things to unpack when it comes to a Gucci collection by Michele. Tailoring, however, is always a core part of every collection. Look 17 is a signature that has been repeatedly rehashed season after season since his creative directorship. The cut is slightly boxier this time around, with a print courtesy of designer George Kenneth Scott. We're betting Harry Styles will be wearing this as soon as he can get his hands on them. For something a bit more grounded (but still in the same unmistakably Gucci à la Michele vein), look 55's blush jacquard suiting is simply exquisite.
But of course, one does not live on suits alone. Taking on Ken Scott's prints once again, Michele translated a dark floral one onto an oversized tunic, trimmed with dark brown braided cords (look 32). The look is paired with corduroy trousers and contrasting lavender knit sneakers. It's casual but not quite; dressed up but nothing serious. And then there's look 53 and its deliciously cut denim blouson decorated with GG monogram and finished with leather panels and buttons, worn simply with a striped top, crisp high-waisted trousers, and then, finished off with a silk scarf around the neck.
Favourite accessories: Fun collaborations that tap on motifs and characters from our childhood, have become quite a big part of Michele's visual language for Gucci. For cruise 2021, there's a continuation of a collaboration with Disney. Donald Duck and his three nephews are overlaid on Gucci's GG Supreme canvas (looks 32 and 37) as seen on a roomy rectangular tote as well as a hardcased travel briefcase. Additionally, Gucci introduced the same tote seen on look 32 but reworked with a finer GG monogram and decorated with motifs featuring Doraemon (look 48). We could be seeing a small capsule collection featuring both characters across a series of accessories come cruise 2021.
There's also the introduction of a crossbody Jackie bag—Gucci's hobo bag that was created in the '50s but gained popularity after being seen on US First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis—a silhouette that Michele brought back for autumn/winter 2020. The crossbody iteration is designed larger and is a better option for those of us who'd rather have our hands free. If not, there's also a blown-up Jackie in look 54 that we're also leaning towards.