The luxury group Kering announced that it would be Sabato De Sarno who would take the reins of artistic direction of its flagship subsidiary Gucci. Alessandro Michele left this prestigious position last November. The new designer has the heavy responsibility of relaunching a House in loss of speed since the covid.
This is the end of the suspense. Since the mystic Alessandro Michele left in November 2022 the creative direction of the House of Gucci, the whole fashion world was waiting for his (her) replacement.
It is Sabato De Sarno who will lead the creative studio of Gucci, while reporting to the CEO of the house, Marco Bizzari. He will be responsible for “defining and expressing the creative vision of the House through the women’s, men’s, leather goods, accessories and lifestyle collections”. Having started his career at Prada in 2005 and then passed through Dolce & Gabbana, he had joined Valentino in 2009, where he climbed the ladder to become fashion director. Sabato De Sarno’s sensitive role will be to revive the iconic Italian brand. He will thus already have to prove himself at the Fashion Week in September 2023.
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Gucci needs a new creative vision to regain its appeal and make up for the ground lost to other luxury brands over the past three years. De Sarno has extensive ready-to-wear experience at three major Italian fashion houses. But he had been in the shadows until now. Kering/Gucci’s decision not to choose a famous, established creative director seems consistent with recent industry trends and the group’s track record. When Alessandro Michele was appointed to Gucci, he was already working in the Gucci studio but was unknown to the general public. At the time, some people were reluctant, but the gamble paid off in the end.
Since his debut as Gucci’s creative director in 2015, Alessandro Michele had made his mark with his colorful, eccentric, floral and nova geek style, bringing out themes of androgyny and the Italian Renaissance. Sales had quickly skyrocketed. But after seven years in the job, the buzz about his style had waned, and institutional investors seemed to agree that a new approach was needed to revive the House. After the covid, the brand’s sales had not rebounded with the same vigor as its competitors. According to the American newspaper Women’s Wear Daily, Alessandro Michele was asked to make a creative change to relaunch the brand. Expectations that have not been met, have raised the tone between François-Henri Pinault, the CEO of Kering, and the designer, leading to the departure of the latter.
On February 15, the Kering group will publish its 2022 results.
Featured photo : © Gucci
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