The Fashion Law Exclusive – Iconic Italian design house, Gucci, presented its Spring collection in Milan on Tuesday. For S/S 2014, creative director Frida Giannini showed florals, tailored suits, and man purses, as well as techy sportswear. The result is a collection that Style.com describes as “a new direction for the label,” as high-performance outerwear isn’t exactly a regular sighting on the Gucci runway. Also present in the collection: a hint of what appears to be design piracy in the form of a jacket that strongly mirrors one that German tech apparel brand, ACRONYM, introduced for Fall 2007 and revived beginning in Fall 2010.
In case you aren’t familiar with ACRONYM, it was founded in 1994 by Michaela Sachenbacher and Errolson Hugh as an independent design agency with a focus on the unification of style and technology in apparel. Far from unknown, ACRONYM launched its house label in 2002, and has since been operating from Munich, Berlin, New York, Tokyo, and Sumperk/Czech Republic, as well as collaborating with Italian sportswear design brand Stone Island and W. L. Gore & Associates (the company that created Gore-Tex), among others. The point I’m trying to make: Gucci knew or should have known about ACRONYM and the design of its GT-J5A jacket, especially given its new tech-inspired direction.
The brand’s co-founder, Errolson Hugh, took to his Twitter last night to share some thoughts on the similarity between his jacket and Gucci’s subsequent “design,” saying: “I’ve been ripped off by a lot of designers and brands, but Gucci doing it is a surprise” and “Hit me up Frida, I’m in Milan all the time. I can help you, no problem.” So, while Gucci’s version of the jacket very likely doesn’t boast the 3-Layer Gore-Tex Pro Shell with Gore Micro Grid Backer Technology that ACRONYM’s GT-J5A jacket does, we can’t help but notice the nearly identical appearance. Changing the color and introducing it a few seasons later hasn’t fooled us, Gucci. Now, pull the jacket!We are currently waiting on a response from Gucci.