It’s difficult not to draw a line from what’s happening at Gucci under Alessandro Michele to what’s happening at Pucci under Massimo Giorgetti. Each designer has laid out a vision for his respective Italian heritage house completely at odds with the work of his predecessor, ending their eras of sizzling sex appeal with quirky personality clothes.
The strategy shifts between then and now as both brands are striking, though the similarities end there. Giorgetti feels less experienced than Michele as yet. While his first outing for Pucci was resort, spring was Giorgetti’s big runway debut. A U-turn from the house’s last runway, the lineup commanded attention with its boxy T-shirt and sweatshirts worn over sequined skirts and array of eccentric sea-life motifs, but failed to deliver a strong point of view. There was a lot going on.
Backstage before the show, Giorgetti continually came back to the concept of “now.” He had done his diligence in the archives, homing in on Emilio Pucci’s summer collections, specifically scarves from the Fifties and Sixties depicting shells, sea sirens and Capri. “In 2016, the attitude is completely different,” he said. “It’s always easy to dress, easy to wear. Everything is very light and fluid.”
Skirts based on a famous archival style that was made of slit panels came in a multitude of sequined treatments, in piercing aqua blue, purple and orangey gold. Softly pleated dresses and skirts — a collection highlight — were layered with embroidered tops, some of which bore the name “Emilio” in cursive, Giorgetti’s new play for a logo. It also appeared across the back shoulders of a dress and on the straps of sandals.
There were no obvious curlicue prints, but the house scarves were tied up in saronglike dresses. Netted, apronlike tops embroidered with colorful fish, shells and coral were an attempt at modern, sporty artiness, but brought to mind a fisherman’s daily catch in the net — literally.
Giorgetti’s vision was a bit underwater. He needs focus to make it float.