Musical Chairs: Fashion Industry Edition. The Great Resignation Is Officially Upon Us


Morning routine for fashion geeks: open Instagram, pity the employees at luxury headquarters, shed a tear or two – courtesy of your favourite creative director’s resignation & read up on another controversy taking the fashion industry by storm.

To name a few dignitaries who’ve put in their papers, we have Alessandro Michele from Gucci, Raf Jan Simons from his namesake label, Riccardo Tisci from Burberry and the list is rather extensive. And mind you, these are some of the biggest fashion Maisons that dictate the trend cycle & set the sartorial tone for years to come. Hence, the restructuring raises genuine concerns about the line of succession & inevitable paradigm shift.

Alessandro Michele

The freshest case in the circuit is that of Gucci’s now ex-creative director, Alessandro Michele. Given the news leak, almost a day prior to the official announcement, masses & publications were borderline prepared. On the work front, Alessandro helmed the Italian luxury powerhouse since 2015, positioning the brand as an inclusive & eccentric offering for its high-end, celeb-swarmed clientele. Favoured by pop star Harry Styles, actor Jared Leto, Dakota Johnson & Billie Eilish, his initial tryst with the Kering subsidiary started way back in 2002, as an accessories designer.

Here’s an excerpt from his statement on Instagram addressing the aforementioned exit: “There are times when paths part ways because of the different perspectives each one of us may have. Today an extraordinary journey ends for me, lasting more than twenty years, within a company to which I have tirelessly dedicated all my love and creative passion.”

Riccardo Tisci

Having stepped down from his role of Chief Creative Officer at Burberry, Riccardo Tisci was shortly replaced by Daniel Lee of Bottega Veneta fame. Given the pandemic’s economic dent, sustaining the Burberry business was a herculean task. Enter a massive rejig, thereby putting a halt to Tisci’s 5-year long tenure.

Raf Simons

While the reason still remains in the dark, Raf Simons’ eponymous label is set to shut shop after a 27-year long run. The brand’s collection showcased in London for this Spring Summer 2023 shall be the last. Speculation is rife regarding his positioning at Prada since Raf is also tasked with the responsibility of being the Co-Creative Director at the iconic house. Could this be a subtle hint at Miuccia’s upcoming retirement & the subsequent increase in responsibilities for Raf? Time will tell.

Time To Change The Fashion Industry’s Rules?


While the fashion business is no stranger to the evolution of this sort, the termination of such big guns often leads to ponderation. Is there a place for one mighty figure in a constantly changing industry anymore? Could we forgo the system of having a singular creative head to yield healthier outcomes – vision and financials-wise? Do luxury brands need a team of inventive entities instead of one with a set-in-stone aesthetic? As conglomerates continue to play the game of puppetry with mega-star designers as soon as the numbers go south, there has to be a plan B for the fashion industry. For now, all we do is wait for Gucci to announce their new successor(s).

Also Read: Are School Uniforms Relevant Or Just Another Excuse To Police Skirt Lengths?

- Digital Fashion Writer


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