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Thread: What's the Matter With Gucci

  1. #1
    kitsch killer Faust's Avatar
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    Default What's the Matter With Gucci

    Funny, I wrote this just before the whole Gucci discussion in the WAYWT thread. F y'all, I guess?

    https://www.sz-mag.com/news/2017/03/whats-matter-gucci/


    Fashion is a form of ugliness so intolerable that we have to alter it every six months - Oscar Wilde

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  2. #2

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    Good read, agree completely.

    I guess that's why Gucci remain 'relevant' to the younger audience - fast fashion fanatics with no appreciation for craftsmanship and tradition.
    The newness you're talking about it's relative I suppose. It's easy to label something as 'new' or 'breathing fresh energy into fashion' if the audience doesn't research past last season's designs.

  3. #3

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    I agree, too.

    F**k that: I'm old enough to remember when everybody's here was wearing loud colors (Best Company, anyone? DSquared later on), tiger on bombers (Chipie, Chevignon, Avirex, DSquared), roses everywhere (see El Charro), shapeless jeans, hi-waist jeans, horrendous long hair like A.M.'s pic and all that 14-years-old stuff...

    Now, Gucci simply looks ridicolous to me. And out-of-time.

    Also, I'm aware that somebody could find ridicolous my diapers-like Boris pants or the pretending-to-be-a-rider pairing of Memphis and Creepers, but -at least- nobody wore drop crotch when I was young...
    Last edited by jap808; 03-13-2017 at 01:30 PM.

  4. #4

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    So first, for the record, I'm not really a fan of either old or new Gucci.

    However, I do think a discussion of this sort should at least mention the quality and craftsmanship that goes into the clothes. Reactionary, rebloggable, intentionally ugly designs are everywhere these days, but Gucci puts out reactionary, rebloggable, intentionally ugly designs that are also gorgeously constructed (temporarily ignoring the high-margin logo hoodies and such that have been mentioned). I remember handling a jacket and being blown away by the intricate needlework, despite finding the design very unappealing.

    I'm reminded of Dries in a way -- while he's not the only designer putting out beautiful patterns, IMO he stands at the top of his niche because in addition to having beautiful patterns and rich concepts, his clothes is also incredibly well made. Of course if one finds either the aesthetic or concept of Michele's Gucci unforgivably offensive, craftsmanship will make little difference.

    On an unrelated note, I really enjoyed this line:

    ...they donít need to back up their opinion in the postmodern world that has demolished all markers of merit when it comes to taste, thereby rendering any argument about taste meaningless.

    It seems nowadays everyone's a winner in fashion Discussions of taste are always done with kid gloves on.

  5. #5

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    I thought the first one or two, or maybe two and half collections were really beautiful.
    But as it stands today, it is an embarrassment.

  6. #6
    kitsch killer Faust's Avatar
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    Timm3h, I could not agree more that Gucci is by and large well-made. It's in their DNA, it's almost like they can do no other. So, it's not like Vetements, for example. Actually, a lot of Italian brands are very well-made. So, it's even more disheartening to see these cheap-looking sweatshirts, t-shirts, and polyester track jackets creeping in. I am sure it's great for the bottom line. It's the Hedi Slimane model that he perfected at Dior Homme and then blew up at YSL. First build the reputation, then coast on it by decreasing quality and increasing profit margins.

    If we want to go the "fun" route, I prefer Valentino. I think they have hit the right balance without veering into the ornamental vortex.
    Fashion is a form of ugliness so intolerable that we have to alter it every six months - Oscar Wilde

    StyleZeitgeist Magazine

  7. #7

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    A bunch of fogies in here.

    But on a serious note, great article E. I know a lot of journalists are on the Gucci hype train; however, the truth needs to be said. I think Michele's first few seasons at Gucci were fairly well done; however, he's become a one trick pony and this "freshness" has become stale fairly quick. The designs aren't only loud and ugly, but also uninspiring. This is in contrast to designers such as Dries who's designs at times are loud and full of patterns, yet come off as rich and elegant due to the philosophy and research which goes into designs.

    With that being said, I still want a few pieces from Gucci.

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    Great stuff. On another note, I literally laughed out loud at "seinfeld jeans"
    Quote Originally Posted by Faust View Post
    HOBBY?! HOBBY?!?!?!?!?! You are on SZ, buddy - it ain't no hobby, it's passion, religion, and unbounded cosmic love rolled into one.

  9. #9

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    Faust and timm3h, obviously I can understand your dislike for our postmodern society as, although it means that there is greater freedom for the average consumer, it also results in Vetements, Supreme and Gucci clothes with various disjointed logos.

    What I'd like to know is, do you advocate a return to the elitism of the past? One of the things I enjoy about fashion and 'taste' now is that taste has become subjective and it is about wearing what you like, rather than bowing to the dictates of celebrities or those rich people who dictate the tastes of fashion. Sure, it means that taste is now almost irrelevant, but it also entails far greater freedom. It's a little like the Dada, Surrealist, and Modern art movements fighting against the elitism of art, with those of the old guard shocked at how these boundaries are falling.

    My next question is, do you think there is any way to reconcile the fall of taste with beautiful fashion that does not pander to consumerism, Instagram, and the like? I too have seen the worrying trend of Instagram fashion rise and I hope that this is not the path all designers will take.

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by MoonlightDragon View Post
    What I'd like to know is, do you advocate a return to the elitism of the past? One of the things I enjoy about fashion and 'taste' now is that taste has become subjective and it is about wearing what you like, rather than bowing to the dictates of celebrities or those rich people who dictate the tastes of fashion. Sure, it means that taste is now almost irrelevant, but it also entails far greater freedom. It's a little like the Dada, Surrealist, and Modern art movements fighting against the elitism of art, with those of the old guard shocked at how these boundaries are falling.
    I'll chime in here. I always feel weird about advocating for a return of elitism, but I'm definitely elitist when people talk about loving fashion but only like/wear whatever's hot at the moment. That said, I think the idea that taste is subjective is spot on, and goes far beyond people who wear Gucci or Vetements. That taste is subjective, and that you can be "fashionable" without pandering to whatever's trendy is the reason why styles like the ones on this forum can still be going in 2017. If it wasn't for that, the whole "goth" thing would have died after it peaked, rather than continuing to thrive within a sizeable niche of the fashion community.

  11. #11
    kitsch killer Faust's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MoonlightDragon View Post
    Faust and timm3h, obviously I can understand your dislike for our postmodern society as, although it means that there is greater freedom for the average consumer, it also results in Vetements, Supreme and Gucci clothes with various disjointed logos.

    What I'd like to know is, do you advocate a return to the elitism of the past? One of the things I enjoy about fashion and 'taste' now is that taste has become subjective and it is about wearing what you like, rather than bowing to the dictates of celebrities or those rich people who dictate the tastes of fashion. Sure, it means that taste is now almost irrelevant, but it also entails far greater freedom. It's a little like the Dada, Surrealist, and Modern art movements fighting against the elitism of art, with those of the old guard shocked at how these boundaries are falling.

    My next question is, do you think there is any way to reconcile the fall of taste with beautiful fashion that does not pander to consumerism, Instagram, and the like? I too have seen the worrying trend of Instagram fashion rise and I hope that this is not the path all designers will take.
    Fair points. I would say that today celebrities dictate as much as they did before. It's just the types of celebrities changed. It's all about hip-hop and the Kardashians, the vilest crap out there. Kanye wears something and you can bet that a million rich Chinese kids will rush out and buy it.

    I am not advocating for the type of elitism you mention. I am advocating for elitism based on meritocracy (see Sufi's comment re: Gucci v. Dries). Mass taste up to this point has been by definition bad taste. Perhaps one day this will change. I am all for it. But, I think more than anything my job is to call out bad design that has been hyped up. People today have no clue what design is. They think that Off-White is the pinnacle of fashion. This is obviously false. What I have been trying to say in the mass of my Op-Eds since 2012 is that taste is an organic process that requires experience and education. All these fucking numb-nuts think that just because they spend 24/7 following Kanye on Instagram they have magically acquired taste. Fuck that, I say.

    I am not sure what to say about Instagram fashion. I keep hope. For every culture there is counterculture.
    Fashion is a form of ugliness so intolerable that we have to alter it every six months - Oscar Wilde

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  12. #12

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    MoonlightDragon I think before proceeding, we should look at what "elitism of the past" entailed, versus current times.

    From my perspective, the elitism of the past conflated massive appeals to authority with actual meritocracy. So while the fact that taste was dictated by the elite was far from ideal, it's not like the elite were rolling dice and arbitrarily picking what was in and what was out. Quality was not irrelevant with regards to taste (as far as I know, wasn't around to experience it).

    On the other hand, my gripe with how taste is commonly handled nowadays is that it's often entirely handwaved away in the name of egalitarianism, and in the process the baby is thrown out with the bathwater, and we're left with a fundamentally broken system of evaluation that doesn't use merit as a factor. But hey, it's not elitist!

    I don't think we should return to elitism in the sense of there being immutable standard of taste dictated from on high that us lowly plebes should unquestioningly subscribe to. I DO think we should get rid of the mentality that everything is great as long as you want it to be, and as long as it is making some people happy.

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    Senior Member DudleyGray's Avatar
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    I've filed Gucci under "words I scroll past in online shops," and since I'm not forced to be confronted with it, it's never entered my mind until WAYWT. From what was presented in WAYWT, it looks nice and hip, and there seems to be a cohesive aesthetic being sold judging from the campaign videos. I'd never wear it for the obvious reasons, but also because it seems youthful while I am not. So overall, it's as little to do with me as any other major fashion label.

    But considering that it is well-made, I don't understand why it's much different from this:

    https://www.brownsfashion.com/shoppi...odCFoDKQ&size=

    Except that Dries is cool and time-tested, while Michele is hip but possibly short-lived or superficial? Is that what distinguishes what is considered acceptable taste, awareness of and maybe adherence to names that are current vs classic? Hopefully, I'm missing something, as I'd prefer judgment to be more content-focused and less reactive to the taste of others, be it mass or elite.

    Otherwise, I don't think the fashion landscape is so different now, in that Instagrammable pieces are the sunglasses and perfumes of the past. Also, elitism should be an implicit thing, or maybe an afterthought, but that egalitarianism, even when feigned, is necessary. After all, Kanye's followers, or even Kanye himself, aren't influencing the fashion sensibilities of anyone who matters, and an explicitly exclusive elite wouldn't be any elite that I would want any part of, not that "they" would care.
    Last edited by DudleyGray; 03-15-2017 at 10:07 AM.

  14. #14

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    Quote Originally Posted by DudleyGray View Post

    don't understand why it's much different from this:

    https://www.brownsfashion.com/shoppi...odCFoDKQ&size=
    ive been a secret dries fan for a while and he is one of the designers that came to mind when i discovered nu gucci. i dont wanna come across as pushing the line, im just posting it cos i really like the clothes and ive always said ill wear anything if i like it regardless of the label. i also dont pay any attention to whats going on with fashion nowadays. i dont keep up with articles or trends or what journalists are currently hyping.
    gucci is , unfortunately, a powerful name and for me has alot of shitty associations. when i look at the customers leaving the gucci store here they often look like jay z walking out with the big brown gucci shopping bag probably filled with a new pair of sneakers. a $350 product with a large shoe box and bag so everyone knows , hey look at me im wearing gucci. i hate that and i even joke with an employee there about it. then theres the runway stuff which is a totally different beast . the clothes are gorgeous in person, like dries. i think the runway styling for the mens is kinda shitty (also like dries) but pieces taken individually and integrated with our own style look better.
    i agree with fausts assessment of taste, it does take experience and education. i like to think i still have taste even though i like nu gucci lol. i dont know why exactly but dam it really appeals to me. theres a certain quirkiness that stimulates the part of my brain that likes particle physics and differential equations... and high fashion. its weird

    maybe im not seeing gucci the same way . to me, i see physicists, maybe an inorganic chemist, a librarian, all with (imo) good taste in clothes. a few of my colleagues while i was a scientist were on the autism spectrum. it was obvious in their mannerisms and their style. sweater vests and ties were mismatched and socks and shoes were sometimes colorful. their hair was often unruly or very neatly parted and big glasses. they werent wearing gucci but i can see them in it. its that kind of a vibe that i get with gucci. an explosion of colors and images that dont seem coordinated but when put together its appealing as fuck. when i think of my circle of friends into high fashion and the ones who also like nu gucci theyre kinda derpy too. one holds a doctorate, another is into comics and stuff. its kind of clothes for nerds
    Last edited by jogu; 03-15-2017 at 02:48 PM.

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    kitsch killer Faust's Avatar
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    Best FaceBook comment on the article so far:

    "the beautiful thing about it is you don't have to wear it if it doesn't speak to you... imo alessandro's gucci is a beautiful and fun looking-glass for vintage fashion lovers to see themselves reflected onto the runway as they are oft neglected by the mainstream. to each their own, dawg."
    Fashion is a form of ugliness so intolerable that we have to alter it every six months - Oscar Wilde

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  16. #16

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    Quote Originally Posted by DudleyGray View Post
    I've filed Gucci under "words I scroll past in online shops," and since I'm not forced to be confronted with it, it's never entered my mind until WAYWT. From what was presented in WAYWT, it looks nice and hip, and there seems to be a cohesive aesthetic being sold judging from the campaign videos. I'd never wear it for the obvious reasons, but also because it seems youthful while I am not. So overall, it's as little to do with me as any other major fashion label.

    But considering that it is well-made, I don't understand why it's much different from this:

    https://www.brownsfashion.com/shoppi...odCFoDKQ&size=

    Except that Dries is cool and time-tested, while Michele is hip but possibly short-lived or superficial? Is that what distinguishes what is considered acceptable taste, awareness of and maybe adherence to names that are current vs classic? Hopefully, I'm missing something, as I'd prefer judgment to be more content-focused and less reactive to the taste of others, be it mass or elite.
    I think context matters here. Dries certainly has his misses, but if you look at his runway shows (whether it's an individual collection or the past x years), at least personally I find a lot more coherence and certainly a ton of more class in them than in recent gucci collections. This might not be relevant to everyone and of course you can consider the clothing just as individual products in which case sure, Gucci might make some decent looking things (I personally haven't come across anything that isn't gimmicky or ugly yet)
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  17. #17

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    Current Gucci reminds me of what Neil Postman said in "Amusing Ourselves to Death" where, in the new culture creatives will act in a similar manner to that of a DJ, mixing a myriad of preexisting trends in order to create a mix/mashup designed for the most ephemeral sense of pleasure and feeling. I think this is damn close to the ultimate form of high fashion democratization, a huge barrage of choice without a substantial narrative as to not hinder the consumer's fantasy in any way. Postman was talking specifically about Americans in the book, but I think the trend is pretty universal at this point.

    "Americans no longer talk to each other, they entertain each other. They do not exchange ideas; they exchange images. They do not argue with propositions; they argue with good looks, celebrities, and commercials."


    I'm so happy someone used the word "derpy" to describe clothing. Derpy is my cat's unofficial name XD.

  18. #18
    Senior Member DudleyGray's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jogu View Post
    ive been a secret dries fan for a while
    Shh, not so loud! People might suspect that you have taste!

    Quote Originally Posted by lowrey View Post
    I think context matters here. Dries certainly has his misses, but if you look at his runway shows (whether it's an individual collection or the past x years), at least personally I find a lot more coherence and certainly a ton of more class in them than in recent gucci collections. This might not be relevant to everyone and of course you can consider the clothing just as individual products in which case sure, Gucci might make some decent looking things (I personally haven't come across anything that isn't gimmicky or ugly yet)
    I went back and looked at Michele's runway presentations after this convo, and I have to retract a bit. Gucci does have that awkward, stilted quality to it that jogu mentioned, whereas Dries is more lavish and refined, and it's only from comparing individual pieces that could betray otherwise. Admittedly, I don't pay close attention to fashion either, and I wonder whether I actually care about fashion at all or just one designer.

    I do think Michele has been internally consistent enough over the past couple years, though, and if it weren't for the high turnover rate that is common with designers at big houses and the general goldfish attention span of current fashion, his Gucci could have a chance.

  19. #19

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    Don't know if this deserve a new thread, so I'll post here: feel free to move... or delete...

    The Fashion Outlaw Dapper Dan
    Twenty-five years after luxury labels sued his Harlem boutique out of existence, Gucci looks to him for inspiration.
    https://mobile.nytimes.com/2017/06/0...lem-gucci.html

    Reminds me of my Follow-the-Leader days :*-)



    More here >
    https://www.nytimes.com/2017/05/31/f...an-jacket.html

  20. #20

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    Gucci x Dover Street Market exclusive pre-fall special pieces

    http://shop.doverstreetmarket.com/gucci-x-dsm

    :-)

    Erm, also, errrrm, very.... colorful? ;)

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