Saturday, 7 June 2014

Gucci returns to the Swinging Sixties for Fall/Winter 2014

The wooden panelling and the earthy toned decor of the Chairman’s suite at Westin Kuala Lumpur transports me back to the edgy Sixties. 

Outside, the sun radiates its rays, pervading through the floor-to-ceiling window from the high elevation with a breathtaking view of Kuala Lumpur – both present and future. 


At times, I feel like as if I am part of the Mad Men cast, all converged in Don Draper’s Manhattan apartment for a cocktail of sorts. 


Here I am with a slew of Malaysian media members, previewing the fall/winter 2014 ready-to-wear and accessories collections for men and women by Gucci. 

Amidst the lush refreshments and tête-à-tête with fellow editors and writers, I waltzed from rack to rack, perusing the pieces that were freshly culled from the runway and soon, making their way into the glossy fashion spreads and magazine covers.

The walk through starts with the pre-fall collection for men where the looks hark back to the iconic styles of Hollywood rebels such as the late Marlon Brando and James Dean. 

The biker jacket is crafted from lush leather and paired with a warming knitted turtleneck sweater while vermillion double breasted coat and a matching briefcase laden with diamante motif caught my immediate attention. Similar look and feel is present in the womenswear pre-fall collection.

Next is the main fall/winter menswear collection where liner, graphic shapes and dusty pastels are the core elements that make up the collection. 

Just like the pre-fall collection, nuances of 60s menswear abound with hints from the iconic movie The Night Porter – a controversial art flick circa 1974, known for the unforgettable scene where actress Charlotte Rampling sang to the concentration camp guards in nothing but leather gloves and peaked Nazi cap.

The trousers are tailored to echo the sartorial style of the 60s while sweaters boast graphic, boxy shapes. Leather too dominates the collection, purveying masculine punctuation in the forms of biker jackets and accents such as lapels on the velvet suit, double-breasted coat, and shirt and mohair tuxedo. 

For accessories, maxi duffels and shoppers with burnished bamboo handles add an air of unparalleled elegance – perfect accoutrements made for stylish men on the go. Also foreseen to be a hot commodity next season is the casquette du marin caps in leather and fabrics with leather braiding.

Next, we moved towards the womenswear collection where Creative Director Frida Giannini brings to life the essence of Gucci through the application of clean lines, precision and precious materials. 

These elements are further amplified with the addition of exciting colour palette that runs away from the banality of typical fall/winter fares. 

Just at the first sight, I could immediately capture the essence of the late Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, the former US first lady and the unparalleled icon of impeccable style whose name is immortalised as one of Gucci iconic and best-selling bags. Rest assured, if the style icon is ever to revisit the realm of the living, she would immediately order the entire collection upon first look!

Geometrical, form-fitting lines outline the characteristics of the collection – a sophisticated woman who does not dress to please others but herself.

Materials such as stretch wool, angora, mohair as well as shearling, soft nappa leather, goat hair and the exotic beaver fur are carefully worked into pieces such as dresses, pants, skirts, jackets and shirts. 

Even the plush mink fur doused in pink that is usually used for coats and jackets was given a cutting-edge, beyond normal incarnation – as a shirt! 

On the other hand, shorter hemlines are in favour, compared to the floor-sweeping gowns. Mini dresses are richly embroidered with hand-painted smoky crystals, giving a three-dimensional effect to the bodices. The embellishments even light up after dark!

To complement the looks, glam them up with galore of boots – knee-high or ankle – in exotic skins saturated in candy colours; platform sandals with Gucci horsebit at the vamps and high gloss leather loafers. 

Also, look out for the Jackie soft line – a range of unlined leather handbags that are practical, versatile and perfect to carry, anywhere and anytime. 

Leather aside, the bags are also crafted in exotic materials such as python, crocodile skin, and leopard-printed pony skin with colour palette ranges from black, nut brown, eucalyptus and rosy blush, just to list a few.
   
Gucci fall/winter 2014 ready-to-wear collections for men and women will be available at selected Gucci stores in September while the fall/winter 2014 accessories collection will be available from July onwards. Gucci Pre-fall 2014 collections are available now.

*Photos by me

Gucci -  2.21.00 & 3.23.00, Level 2 & 3, Pavilion KL, 168 Jalan Bukit Bintang, 55100 Kuala Lumpur; G38, Ground Level, Suria KLCC, Jalan Ampang, 50088, Kuala Lumpur; Lot G228 & 229, Ground Floor, The Gardens Lingkaran Syed Putra, Mid Valley City, 59000 Kuala Lumpur

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