Gucci goes coutureMonday, 17 May 2010
Gucci is launching an haute couture arm to its fashion house, called Gucci Premiere. Primarily designed for the red carpet and the celebrities who walk it, the Italian luxury brand debuted a dress worn by Salma Hayek for the opening night of the glamorous Cannes Film Festival.
Gucci creative director Frida Giannini told WWD the couture division was launched in response to strong demand for standout red-carpet outfits. “We frequently received many requests from celebrities, actresses and singers, and it was very difficult because, of course, Gucci was born as a ready-to-wear brand, so we were not prepared to offer this kind of service and to deliver something so special,” Giannini says. “Our ready-to-wear factories do a great job — they have great tailors, but the craftsmanship and the finishing of everything is very different.”
Giannini will design a capsule collection, to be renewed twice yearly, and create additional bespoke gowns on request. Gucci is working with seamstresses, embroiderers and other craftspeople in Paris, the traditional home of couture, to execute the designs.
Gucci has no plans to bring it couture to the catwalk, however. Says Giannini: “It’s more an intimate approach between the house of Gucci and the stars and the celebrities. I don’t think, honestly, it’s in the soul of Gucci to do a haute couture fashion show.”
The 38-year-old designer hopes to dress several more celebrities in Cannes, and will transform into a walking billboard for her skills when she dons a full-length Gucci Première gown for the screening of the restored version of Luchino Visconti’s 1963 classic “The Leopard”.
“To me, cinema is always a great source of inspiration,” she says. “And I have never worn couture myself, so it’s a good opportunity for me!”