Semiotic Analysis

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Gucci/Tom Ford Semiotic Analysis

Tom Ford made a very short statement at Gucci on Saturday. American Ford, who is one of only a handful of designers who has the power to change the course of fashion history with one stroke, decreed that the miniest of micro skirts will be massive news for spring/summer 2003. And with that, it’s hoped he wiped all memory of the sales slump his parent company announced just two days before. For the last three seasons, Ford has reserved his trend-setting pieces for his new Yves Saint Laurent ready-to-wear collection. It may be that he has held a few back for YSL Rive Gauche, which he shows in Paris on October 7, this season, too. But Gucci had its fair share for spring: going against the once popular hemlines-rise-with-share-prices theory, Ford presented a highly sensual collection of off-the-shoulder blousons and jersey tops in soft pastels and black, bottom-grazing bustier dresses and slippery embroidered kimonos and stretch silk cheongsams, accessorised by sexy, silver peep-toe slingbacks, a deep tan and serious bed-hair. With its raw sex appeal and unapologetic glamour, it was a shot of Eighties optimism – and one we could all do with right now.Screen Shot 2017-04-07 at 11.33.29.png

Figure 1: Carmen Kass tomford/gucci kimono 2003

Ford’s obsession now is integrating fine workmanship into abbreviated silhouettes. He took the idea of a kimono and portrayed it first as a simple silk beach cover-up, then as an elegant formfitting dress, painstakingly made from hand-painted strips of silk. He brought couture finesse to racer-back feathered dresses with the merest flip of a skirt. And with lightest touch, he wove white and rose gold into fragile ribbons to tie around wrists—the most modern-looking jewellery in Milan. When Carmen Kass closed the show in a dress made entirely of the same precious ribbon, it was a confident statement in the power of glamour. And fashion needs that.

Reichert would say “the use of sexual appeals in advertising has become the norm for such products as cosmetics, fashion accessories, and perfume and any number of other women’s magazines replete with sexually charged advertisements” and therefore it could be seen as a surprise that this advertisement faced such high cristism. However it also could be said that the  nature of the advertisement cannot be told, as the model is against the wall it could be considered rape as just her body being in shot does not reveal anything else.Screen Shot 2017-04-07 at 11.53.58.png

Figure 2: Current Gucci jacket

The bomber jacket is also a material which was used a lot in the 90’s and easy 20’s due to the new romantic fashion craze. The model in the kimono is show femininity with the heels and having the kimono open with her breast out, how ever it could be noted that the other models might be seen as more masculine by wearing the bomber jacket, trousers. The bomber jacket could been seen as similar to those sold by companies now with the satin material and embroidered back.

Something else published in Vogue article called “Best Bomber Jackets to Buy Now”. When looking on the fashion journal; Collezioni’s article about the Spring 2016 Gucci show I found that there are many different prints similar to the one on the kimono/bomber.

Screen Shot 2017-04-07 at 12.08.53.pngFigure 3: Gucci s/s 2016


PITHERS, E. (2016)10 Best Bomber Jackets: Buy Now [Online] Vogue Online, Available at:

Accessed: 02/03/17

(2012) Runway of Spring/Summer 2003 show[Online] ELLE Online, Available at:

Nomura, Shojiro; Ema, Tsutomu (2006)Japanese kimono designs. New York, USA .: Dover.

Reichert, T (2011) The naked truth: revealing the affinity for graphic sexual appeals in advertising. Journal of advertising research Volume: 51 Issue: 2

Accessed: 02/03/17

Image References 

Figure 1: Carmen Kass tomford/gucci kimono 2003


Accessed: 02/03/17

Figure 2: Current Gucci jacket


Accessed: 02/03/17

Figure 3: Gucci s/s 2016


Accessed: 02/03/17

Word count: 543




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