Alessandro Michele described a multilayered collection encompassing “some of my passions.” Street style, the Renaissance, the Seventies, “and a little injection of some chic points of the Eighties. I love to mix and match [references] into a different language.” He named a time-traveling Catherine de Medici as a seasonal muse.
Decoration figures powerfully in Michele’s work, an abundance of patterns, pleats, embroideries and fur trims on fluid clothes integrated with beautiful tailoring, styled with offbeat bravado. Most often, it delighted. Michele romances the natural world with near-literal representation and intriguingly weird placement a pair of birds or a black panther on the bodice of an otherwise ethereal pastel gown and, more controversially, the image of a flat, splayed-out tiger down the back of a fur coat.
In a very short time, Michele has produced remarkable work that has rocked fashion at Gucci. Yes, every designer must keep moving forward, and if he feels now’s the time to toughen up, Godspeed.