Taking forward a relationship that was established last year, Gucci has collaborated with iconic Harlem designer Dapper Dan for a much-anticipated range of ready-to-wear apparel and accessories.
In December 2017, the fashion house had teamed up with Dap, as he is commonly known. Together, they unveiled a 4,700 sq ft studio atelier in Harlem as homage to the original Dapper Dan’s Boutique — which catered to a host of hip-hop stars, street legends, and athletes before shutting shop in 1992.
25 years later, the Gucci Dapper Dan collection seeks inspiration from the latter’s archives and reimages his ldesigns with a Gucci spin on the fabrics, appliqué and more. The result is a largely unisex range that symbolizes the extraordinary synergy between Dan and Gucci Creative Director Alessandro Michele’s philosophies.
Dap’s fondness for using all-over logos in his original designs is interpreted in screen-printed leather pieces featuring the GG logo. Signature Gucci appliqué like dragons and goldprinted pythons feature as embroidery, embellishment and even as trims — an ode to the gold leather that Dap would favor. Another interesting source of inspiration is a custom car interior designed by Dap, which is reinterpreted in this collection as a GG jacquard knit. Even the script from the window of the original Harlem store has served as the starting point for the development of a new, yellow Gucci logo.
Given Michele’s love for typography, the designer asked Dap to come up with some words that best represent the spirit of the collection — this is the story behind the use of the Latin phrase ‘E Pluribus Unum’ (Out of many, one’), which features in some of the jewellery of the collection and as an embroidered slogan on the clothing too.
Swarovski-embellished eyewear includes a Dapper Dan logo in stones, while slides display a large Gucci Dapper Dan logo. Colored backpacks and belt bags come in all-over GG logo material with a variety of details. Silk squares exhibiting the Gucci Flora pattern have a border with Dapper Dan’s name running around it, and thin cravats are covered in tiny interlocking Gs.
Dap’s fans over the years include artistes Bobby Brown, LL Cool J, Eric B. & Rakim, Big Daddy Kane, Salt-N-Pepa, and boxer Floyd Mayweather Jr., so this newly launched collection looks set to be an undisputed success too.