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Can Gucci Woo a New Kind of It Girl?


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In 1899, a young man named Guccio Gucci went to work as a porter at the Savoy Hotel in London. During that time, he keenly observed the hotel’s upper-class customers and their rarified tastes. He studied everything they wore and carried and became so enamored with the idea of traveling well that he eventually returned home to Florence to start his own leather accessories business. The house of Gucci was founded in 1921. From there, its history—as depicted in a silly movie starring Lady Gaga and Adam Driver a few years ago—went a bit like this: The company flourished, spiraled out of control, tanked, rose again, and flattened out before finally came back on top.

Today, Gucci is at another turning point. It has a talented new creative director, Sabato de Sarno, who is working hard to beat a path forward in the midst of an uncertain economy and a murky fashion landscape. Critics have been wary of his more subdued vision for Gucci. They think it’s too safe, too straightforward, or too snoozy. But today in London, not far from where Guccio Gucci learned about the power of aspiration, de Sarno upped the ante on his strategy—a vision that might not be about high-fashion fantasy or spectacular glamour but, instead, about dressing the era’s new “It” girls.


The Gucci Cruise 2025 show was held inside the gargantuan Tate Modern, which de Sarno and his team decorated with live plants and greenery. (After the show, the brand planned to donate it to garden-focused community projects throughout London.) Models descended a winding concrete staircase designed by Herzog & de Meuron and through the runway space in front of front-row guests like Dua Lipa, Solange, Kate and Lila Moss, Arca, and Little Simz.

gucci cruise 2025


The clothes were a mix of some of de Sarno’s favorite codes and silhouettes—short shorts, minis, mod-ish jackets, and fluid, sexy gowns—and newer propositions like swishy jeans with fringe encircling the thighs and ditzy black-and-white floral prints on gabardine. De Sarno likes to play with movement and texture, and this season felt more varied in terms of the ways in which he executed those techniques by using details like 3-D laser-cut organza and hand-molded sequins. There were cheeky odes to classically British style, like tartans and plaids and punkish creeper shoes, as well as fresh iterations of the 1970s-era Gucci Blondie bag and sheer pussy bow blouses for an added touch of nostalgia.

gucci cruise 2025


These are clothes made for the wide range of It girls and power women that de Sarno has been casting in his campaigns and seating in the front row of his shows, starting with Daria Werbowy and following with Kendall Jenner, Taylor Swift, Miley Cyrus, Solange, and Dua Lipa. Some are more commercial, some more likely to experiment with fashion, but they all have an edge—a certain something that makes people gawk and gag for anything they wear. There are the niche It girls who star in Charli XCX videos, and there are the kind of It girls who have cool and mass appeal. De Sarno seems, smartly, to be interested in wooing the latter woman.

At the end of the day, this is a business about desire. De Sarno might not be blowing us out of the water with big cerebral ideas or elaborate couture, but he’s finding his footing by providing a wardrobe for the women we all want to be. It’s similar to what Hedi Slimane did at Céline and what Chemena Kamali is doing at Chloé. It’s about designing a beautifully-made, well-executed collection of clothes and accessories made for the dream of being cool. It’s what Guccio Gucci did back in the day too. He held fancy people’s luggage and set their hat boxes down on the shelves, looked closely at them as potential customers, and made things he knew they wanted (no, needed) to get their hands on.

gucci cruise 2025


Brooke Bobb is the fashion news director at Harper’s Bazaar, working across print and digital platforms. Previously, she was a senior content editor at Amazon Fashion, and worked at Vogue Runway as senior fashion news writer. 

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