When news broke in late January that Sabato De Sarno had been named Alessandro Michele's successor at luxury Italian fashion House, Gucci, fashion enthusiast and industry heavyweights were waiting with bated breath to see what the Naples-born designer was going to bring to the table. The first look at De Sarno's new era was first hinted at with the release of a brand-new jewellery campaign, featuring model Daria Werbowy; communicating a feeling of a total reset for the brand. Contrastingly to the legacy that Michele had left behind, the new campaign and De Sarno’s first mark on the House was the beginning of a clean break, an energy that the new creative director let bleed into his first debut show at Milan Fashion Week.
Originally slated to be hosted on the streets of Brera, a neighbourhood that is home to the arts university and fosters a community of inspiring and emerging creative minds, the backdrop of the highly anticipated show was transported back to the House’s headquarters, with the threat of a storm looming. And while it might have been the location that Michele held many of his shows in throughout his tenure, the energy couldn’t have felt more different.
Darkness surrounded the runway as we saw the opening look – a peak-lapelled charcoal coat, worn over a pair of black short-shorts, a simple white tank and accessorised with the unmistakable GG logo belt, Gucci Jackie and a new design of platform loafers – emerge under the bright white light. The thumping sound of Late Night Feelings reverberated through the space; a soundtrack curated by Mark Ronson and speaking to the “story of music and nights out, of sweat, dancing and singing,” that De Sarno wanted to communicate.
While distant from Michele’s interpretation of the House’s history, De Sarno’s debut tapped into a different part of Gucci’s legacy, with many drawing parallels between his collection and the musings of Tom Ford. There was even a reinterpretation of one of Ford's biggest hits – a white going out top trimmed in an edging of sparkling embellishments, paired with perfect, slouchy denim. Legs for days and an undercurrent of sexiness was felt throughout, tied together by the House’s new signature colour, Gucci Rosso – a deep, confident shade of red.
"It's a story of joy of life, of passion, of humanity, of people, of real life, of irreverent glamour, of provocation, of confidence, of simplicity, of immediate feelings and emotions, of a specific type of art, of words – words in artworks, words in pictures, words in spaces, just words,” shared De Sarno in his official show notes.
“A story of richness and lust/desire, of red but also blue and green, of flash, of spontaneity, of light, of a party at the first light of day.”
An artful lesson in minimalism, De Sarno's Gucci finds answers to the spaces we needed filled. It offers a wearable identity that sets out to enrich the every day. It celebrates objects that are cold to the touch, but warm the heart. Welcome to De Sarno's new era.
See all our favourite looks, below, and find out more about the show on the Gucci website.