Nothing reinforces the gender binary like the season for holiday gift guides. Since the dawn of consumer capitalism, department stores and designers have been offering ideas for “Lui” (wallets, whiskey stones) and “Her” (purses, scent samplers) with little room for fluidity.
This year, Gucci buyers were treated to a break from the norm. Regarding this year’s capsule, another category is proposed: Them.
New York-based fashion and culture commentator José Criales-Unzueta noticed Gucci’s addition during his annual research into gift trends from various fashion houses. It is the first time that he notices a third option separate from men and women.
“It’s interesting to see Gucci being the only big luxury player to add a non-binary gift guide to its holiday shopping offering,” Criales-Unzueta said on Instagram. “I’m talking about it because it’s a very interesting and smart approach to an ‘inclusive’ online holiday gifting experience. It should be emphasized that there is no new product in this guide, it is just a different selection from the main product that may appeal to a non-binary buyer. “
Indeed, the “Them” section conjured up bright red lipsticks, dangling earrings, checkered sneakers, skirts, ties and cardigans – all products one could find elsewhere on the party. gender of the site. Nothing was new or seemed to have been designed by a non-binary or trans person.
The “Them” gesture could be described as a naked and superficial attempt to wake up. Or would it make some customers feel like they’ve been seen for the first time? Could it be a bit of everything, a clumsy but well-intentioned performance of diversity?
The Daily Beast asked Gucci reps two fairly easy questions: Were non-binary people involved in curating this selection, and will the brand be making charitable donations to LGBTQ organizations with the profits? They refused to answer.
It should be noted that Gucci has been a strong advocate for fluid gender dressing. We are in the third week of a non-controversy over the asinin conservative commentary on what makes a ‘manly man’, inspired by Harry Styles’ Vogue blanket. The much-discussed baby blue dress Styles wore for the photoshoot was designed by Gucci Creative Director Alessandro Michele.
In July, the brand’s website launched Gucci Mx, a non-binary and fluid e-commerce section. A representative for the brand noted that the page wasn’t exactly a new collection. They are simply existing models modeled on various models “without having to conform to a rigid distinction between women and men”.
A rigid distinction of Gucci Mx models make must comply with: size. As noted in various posts when it debuted this summer, the Mx aesthetic is still painfully fatphobic, adhering to a tired standard of “androgynous” models that wouldn’t look out of place in a 1990s Calvin Klein underwear ad. .
Criales-Unzueta told the Daily Beast he had received mixed reviews in comments and DMs regarding Gucci’s efforts. “I think the reactions vary somewhere in the spectrum between, it’s such an obvious marketing strategy up to, it’s great,” he said.
Criales-Unzueta stores in the women’s and men’s sections of department stores. Even in a progressive city like New York, it can still attract sideways glances.
“People are like, ‘Why are you trying this? Criales-Unzueta said. “Especially in the outlet stores which are divided by gender, in most cases. They will give you free gift with purchase, vials for men, makeup bags for women. I’ll be like, ‘OK, but I like the makeup bag.’ “
While Criales-Unzueta recognizes Gucci’s non-binary gifts section as a marketing boon, he hopes it will “create a ripple effect” for other brands. “I’m curious to see if this is something everyone will do next year,” he said. “A lot of other brands don’t have the range. When it comes to the flagship of brands like Givenchy or Dior, it is so divided by gender. But with Gucci, their main symbols are so neutral: the interlaced G leather bag, the quilting, the jacquard patterns.
Dev Seldon (they / them) is a dancer, actor, model and creative director of Fluide Beauty, a makeup brand made for people of all gender expressions. “For me, someone who identifies as trans and non-binary, who is also black and queer, I will always wonder when big brands do this stuff,” Seldon said. “If you still have a men’s and women’s section, you’re not really non-binary.”
For Seldon, the Gucci section “looks like a seizure of money, a way to target Gen Z or seems to be trendy or fashionable.” They also said it was a “really big red flag” that Gucci reps didn’t talk about whether non-binary consultants were being paid or employed to help build this gift guide.
“It takes a lot of work to do the right thing,” Seldon said. “For me, the fact that they are not proud of where this came from is a concern.”
“if you don’t do it right, it is detrimental. It does a lot more for Gucci than it does for non-binary, gender and trans communities.“
– Dev Seldon
Gucci’s gift guide won’t do much to help the trans and non-binary community, and much to make wealthy shoppers feel better about themselves. “I think it’s great that we are trying to be inclusive overall,” Seldon said. “But if you don’t do it right, it’s detrimental. It does a lot more for Gucci than it does for non-binary, gender and trans communities. “
And: what does even “non-binary” look like? “We all have a different aesthetic, we all have different views on how to take the binary apart,” Seldon explained. “The idea is that we can wear anything. We want to be able to express ourselves and wear what we want that is faithful to us, individually. It could change from day to day for a person. “
Jamie Windust (they / them) is a public speaker, model and author of In Their Shoes: Navigating Non-Binary Life. They also wrote and modeled for Carillon, a Gucci zine published in 2019.
“[Gucci’s] the work is often exciting and free from rigid gender norms in terms of their outward expression through marketing and campaigns, ”Windust wrote in an email to The Daily Beast. “But essentially, the big fashion houses in the industry are still integrated in a binary segmentation of their products. They only tend to “walk away” from that, or make their product line more inclusive if there is aa) marketing opportunity or b) it is based on selling products through gift guides. “
That doesn’t mean big fashion houses should be too afraid of overturning or public condemnation to keep trying, said Rob Smith, founder of the genre-less store Phluid Project. “Gucci has been a leader in ‘the future is fluid’ marketing,” Smith said. “But I’m still concerned when it comes to just a marketing campaign.”
“They can continue to improve. It is progress, not perfection. The journey to inclusion is a journey, and it doesn’t happen overnight.“
– Rob smith
“But we also have to be careful not to call out Gucci, criticize them, and then any other brand that looks at that like, ‘Whoa, step back, remember what happened to Gucci,’” Smith said. “They can continue to improve. It is progress, not perfection. The journey to inclusion is a journey, and it doesn’t happen overnight. “
So: there is always next year. “I would love for Gucci to try again,” said Seldon, the creative director. “I don’t think it’s over. But I want them to take the feedback and hire the right people and pay the right people. Then men, women, trans people, everyone could express themselves however they wanted. When you genuinely adopt a gender perspective, you set everyone free. “
#Guccis #line #nonbinary #gifts #cash #grab