New Creative Director of Gucci Revealed

Gucci New Creative Director

Last December, GUCCI iconrevealed the breaking news that their Creative Director Frida Giannini and CEO Patrizio di Marco both stepped down.

Being also a couple in real life – they have one daughter Greta together – they had both joined the Kering group almost at the same time, Di Marco 13 years ago as the CEO of Bottega Veneta before moving to Gucci in 2008 and Giannini 12 years ago, when she left Fendi for Gucci, at this time still under the creative direction of Tom Ford.

Marco BizzarriMarco Bizzari

Marco Bizzarri has been appointed the new CEO of Gucci, having joined Stella McCartney in 2005 before moving to Bottega Veneta in 2009. Seems like Bottega Veneta is the “stepping stone” for Gucci CEOs.

Alessandro_Michele_portrait__1739_low_Courtesy of Ronan Gallagher for Gu...Alessandro Michele

Yesterday, the new Creative Director of GUCCI has been officially appointed and it is probably not someone you would have thought of: Alessandro Michele, a longtime Gucci employee, is responsible for all of the brand’s collections and global image.

Born in Rome in 1972, Alessandro studied at the prestigious Academy of Costume & Fashion in Rome. He forged his early design career inside Fendi where he was Senior Accessories Designer. A rising talent, he was tapped by Tom Ford in 2002 and moved to Gucci’s London-based Design Office. Over his 12-year tenure inside the Gucci design studio, Alessandro held a variety of roles. In 2006 he was named Leather Goods Design Director and promoted in May 2011 as Associate to then Creative Director Frida Giannini. Passionate about interiors and décor, Alessandro in September 2014 took on the additional role of Creative Director of Richard Ginori—the fine Florentine porcelain brand acquired by Gucci in June 2013. He immediately reimagined the product offering and branding of the 280-year-old brand, repositioning it for the luxury market with new collections and a new store design template.

It was during the Gucci Men’s F/W 2015 runway show where Alessandro first revealed a contemporary new direction for the House. His full vision for Gucci will emerge during the Women’s F/W 2015 runway show. I am wishing him only the best, a great start and of course lots of creative ideas!

LoL, Sandra

Photos: Courtesy of Gucci and Indigital

The Guilty Trip

Sandra Bauknecht on Gucci Guilty Trip 2014

I have to admit that I am a little behind posting. The last weeks have been crazy. I went to Las Vegas with Gucci, flew back for a few days to Zurich to prepare the launch of L’Officiel Switzerland (the first edition will finally hit the shelves on March 7, 2014) and then hit off to Los Angeles with Piaget for the Spirit Awards.

So I have to rewind a little to tell you all about the amazing time I had in Nevada. There is a saying that “what happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas…” but of course not on Sandra’s Closet. I will give you every little detail of this amazing time. This reason for it  was to discover the Gucci Guilty Stud Limited Edition, a glamorous new take on the striking scents.

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Inspired by the modern rebel, Gucci Creative Director Frida Giannini created Gucci Guilty in 2010, a bold pair of fragrances for modern trend-setters. In 2011, Gucci Guilty Intense was launched, followed by Gucci Guilty Black in 2013. 20 million bottles have been sold, it is a true success story.

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This year, it its all about a rock star attitude. The Italian brand has always loved rock’n roll and rock’n roll has always loved Gucci. For Frida Giannini, it is a constant source of inspiration. Therefore, I was invited to explore the brand’s newest stud collection in the Gucci store, located at The Crystals at CityCenter.

Gucci Studs Shop

To live up to the rock star attitude, we enjoyed a Bruno Mars (Gucci dresses him) concert in the VIP area which was absolutely outstanding. Personally speaking, I have never been really crazy for his songs but after seeing him live on stage, I have become a huge fan.

Bruno Mars

The next day, Gucci has spoilt us even more with an exclusive dinner at the famous Joël Robuchon restaurant located at the MGM Grand hotel in Las Vegas. Inspired by the fragrance’s main ingredients, the eight course menu was just divine, an explosion for all senses.

Dinner Joel Robuchon

So let’s have a look at the first limited edition of Gucci Guilty (the scent stays the same), available for both for woman and men. To celebrate the brand’s signature mix of rock and glamour, the Gucci Guilty Stud Limited Edition is covered in more than 400 metal studs (in gunmetal for him and gold for her). Frida Giannini says: “I have always had a love of the rock aesthetic. I like to think of Gucci Guilty Stud as bottled rock attitude.“ One thing is sure, these exclusive flacons are true collectors’ items.

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Gucci Guilty For Women Stud Limited Edition (right) 
ORIENTAL FLORAL

Top notes: Mandarin and Pink Pepper
Middle notes: Peach, Lilac and Geranium
Base notes: Patchouli and Amber

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Gucci Guilty Pour Homme Stud Limited Edition (left)
AROMATIC FOUGERE

Top notes: Italian Lemon and Mandarin, Green Leaves and Pink Pepper
Middle notes: Lavender, Coriander, Orange Flower and Neroli
Base notes: Cedar and Patchouli

Below you can enjoy some exclusive behind the scenes photos from the campaign shoot with Evan Rachel Wood and a little interview with her.

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Tell us about Gucci Guilty Stud Limited Edition?

Gucci Guilty is releasing a limited edition bottle with studs on it to invoke a rock and roll vibe. It is a very seductive, provocative and bold perfume and now it’s taken to the next level.

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How would you describe the person that wears Gucci Guilty Stud?

A Gucci Guilty woman is someone who is very confident, bold and daring. Someone that isn’t afraid to indulge in their guilty pleasure.

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Do you think that perfume reflects personal style? Does Gucci Guilty match yours?

I think that Gucci Guilty does match my personal style and that perfume can reflect your personal style. I view my style as sleek and classy, but definitely with an edge. I think that’s why this perfume fits me.

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On what occasion would you wear Gucci Guilty Stud?

One thing I love about this perfume is that is has a balance of sweet and spicy. You can wear it during the day but also at night when you’re out to have a good time. It’s a fragrance that makes a statement.

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What does Rock n Roll mean to you?

Rock and roll means everything to me. Even more than acting, music is my first passion. Rock and roll has inspired me in very way. It has inspired me to be myself and to take chances. Rock and roll is all about pushing boundaries. I try to live my life by that.

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What is your first memory of rock and roll?

My first memory of rock and roll was when I saw Labyrinth as a kid. That was when I first saw David Bowie. He was singing these rocks songs in a kid’s film and I completely fell in love with him! I thought, ‘who is this amazing person wearing makeup?

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Who are your rock icons (musically and aesthetically – fashion)?

Patty Smith and Janis Joplin. Women who aren’t afraid to be loud and scream their hearts out.

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What clothing item(s) do you think best reflects a rock and roll lifestyle?

Studs and spikes represent a Rock and Roll lifestyle. Anything that is different, weird, shocking or provocative are all things that represent a Rock and Roll style.

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When you think Gucci, do you think Rock & Roll? Why?

I definitely think rock and roll when I think Gucci. Gucci also sponsored a David Bowie exhibition and the amazing Sound for Change live concert in London in 2013. Frida is also very Rock and Roll. It s said that she has 7,000 records!

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The new limited edition is in stores now. Get yours as long it is available as it will be flying off the shelves…

LoL, Sandra

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Photos: Courtesy of Gucci and © Sandra Bauknecht

Gucci Dresses Beyoncé for Her Tour

Gucci Dresses Beyoncé

Speaking about style on stage, GUCCIicon dresses Beyoncé for her Mrs. Carter Show tour in a series of stunning one-of-a-kind outfits custom designed by Creative Director Frida Giannini.

The singer and songwriter debuted two GUCCI one-of-a-kind outfits at her Barclays Center shows in Brooklyn this month that you can see here including the sketches. Queen B will introduce more looks during the Latin American portion of her tour kicking off on September 8 in Brazil.

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This collaboration comes after Frida Giannini, Beyoncé and Salma Hayek Pinault joined forces earlier this year to create Chime for Change, an ongoing global campaign to raise funds and awareness for girls’ and women’s empowerment.

LoL, Sandra

Photos: Courtesy of Gucci/Getty

This Mother’s Day, I Chime for You…

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This Mother’s Day, I chime for you… for all the moms who inspire us. Send your mom this video featuring Beyoncé, Cameron Diaz, John Legend, Ziggy Marley, Olivia Wilde, Blake Lively and Hafsat Abiola and thank her for her unconditional love. We only have one mom, one mommy, one mother in this world, one life.

CHIME FOR CHANGE, founded by Gucci, is a community of people working to promote education, health and justice for girls and women everywhere. The new global campaign focuses on girls’ and women’s empowerment. It serves to convene, unite and strengthen voices speaking out for the weaker sex around the world, and to raise funds for non-profit organizations pursuing change. To learn more about this important initiative and to join it, please click here.

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Frida Giannini, Gucci’s Creative Director, wearing the Chime for Change T-shirt.

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Many celebrities are supporting this gorgeous initiative, such as Salma Hayek-Pinault and Beyoncé Knowles.

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On June 1st, CHIME FOR CHANGE will present a global concert to put girls’ and women’s issues on the world’s stage. The televised event at London’s Twickenham Stadium with Co-founder and Artistic Director, Beyoncé as headliner will also feature performances by Jennifer Lopez, Ellie Goulding, Florence + the Machine, HAIM, Iggy Azalea, John Legend, Laura Pausini, Rita Ora, Timbaland and more to be announced. Tickets on sale at www.chimeforchange.org.

LoL, Sandra

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Photos: Courtesy of Chime for Change

Gucci F/W 2013 Fashion Show Livestream

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This is your invitation to the Gucci F/W 2013 fashion show!
Watch it this Wednesday afternoon at 2pm CET (8am EST) here on Sandra’s Closet livestreamed from Milan. I am so excited to see what one of my favourite designers Frida Giannini has come up with for the next season.

Talk to you later, I am packing for Los Angeles…

LoL, Sandra

Gucci Manga Style

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Starting from today, you should keep your eyes open for a very special window installation that will roll out across more than 70 Gucci iconboutiques around the world (unfortunately not including Switzerland) and will remain until mid February. For that project, Frida Giannini collaborates with renowned Japanese Manga artistHirohiko Araki, who has created an exclusive Manga (Japanese comic strip) story inspired by the Italian house’s beautiful Cruise 2013 collection. A multi-media campaign will complement the window installation, including the publication of the full Manga story exclusively in Japan’s Spur magazine.

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Commenting on the collaboration Giannini said, “This has without doubt been one of the most enjoyable collaborations I have worked on. The characters that Hirohiko has conceived combine an energy, sensuality and appeal that brings my Cruise collection to life in such a fun and compelling way. I am quite sure his window installations will stop people in their tracks in cities around the world as they immerse themselves in the fabulous fantasy world he has created.”

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Entitled “Jolyne, Fly High with Gucci,” Araki’s Manga tells the adventure of Jolie Kujo, a student who inherits a keepsake from her mother’s Gucci collection. Propelled by the mystery behind her vintage treasure, she embarks on a journey that transcends time.

LoL, Sandra

Photos: ©LUCKY LAND COMMUNICATIONS / SHUEISHA

Interview with the Newlywed Blake Lively

Interview Blake Lively

During the Venice Film Festival, I had the honour to interview one of my favourite actresses, Blake Lively, who is the face of Gucci‘s new fragrance Gucci Première.
(For the photos of the launch event, please click here.)

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Blake is such a sweetheart, truly lively and very charming. She was with her boyfriend, Ryan Reynolds, on the same plane to Zurich like me and the two were sitting in the row in front of me. She remembered my name from the interview we did previously and even saw that I had changed my tights. The two were kissing and teasing each other during the whole flight. So, I was not surprised when I heard the news this morning that the two secretly got married at Boone Hall Plantation in Mt. Pleasant, South Carolina, just outside of Charleston, on Sunday evening. After less than one year of dating, Ryan Reynolds and Blake Lively are now husband and wife. Congrats to the newly-weds!

And now, please enjoy the interview with Blake:

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How were you involved in the process of creating and launching Gucci Première?

I was involved, initially, in the concept of this “Old Hollywood” idea, how we would actualize this. Frida wanted to create the iconic woman and we chose the photographers and the director. I was so excited to work with them. Mert Alas & Marcus Piggott are just amazing. The sexiness shows never in body parts, it is more the expression of the mouth or the look. It is never tacky.

Nicolas creates a lack of reality almost. For the short movie, he took the “Old Hollywwood” idea and combined it with modern, futuristic music. You see a woman from the ’40s but at the same time, you hear the techno sound which makes you feel like in a different time and space. Personally speaking, it is interesting to find the juxtapostion and the balance. The fragrance has the same. The woody, masculine and strong parts combined with the feminine, floral, citrusy notes. It is profound, it is the women in her most realized sense and scent.

I didn’t get to smell the fragrance until we did the first shoot but it changed slightly afterwards again. It is for a powerful woman, who can balance the feminity and the masculinity, being the fullest version of herself. We transported that in the commercial and the visual.

The advertising campaign was shot by the famous photographer duo Mert Alas & Marcus Piggott. The short movie was directed by Nicolas Winding Refn.

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The best piece of advice that you got from someone in the film industry?

I don’t know if I have ever got advice that would apply to me. When I did “The Town”, I asked Ben (Affleck) what was the best advice he got because he is such a talented director. And he answered that Gus Van Sant told him: “Your movie will speak to you, listen to it.”
I have noticed that the directors that listen to their movie, that let it evolve and let it be something different than what it was in the script, have a stronger outcome. In rehearsals, you have that fixed idea what it is and when you start to shoot it, it takes a different shape and form. I always try to go with my gut.

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How is your relation to the fragrance? Can fragrance express your personal style as fashion does?

I think that it does. I love perfumes. It tells your story in a lot of ways. If I look back at the fragrances I had when I was younger, they were bubbly and sweet. As I got older, they evolved. At one point, I started mixing cologne with perfume because I wanted to feel that strength, be that empowered woman but at the same time remain that feminity that a woman has. That is why I love Gucci Première. The fact that it has the wood and the leather but still a wonderful softness and sweetness. It is everything that I tried to achieve when I was mixing a cologne with a perfume.

I am so proud of being the face of Gucci Première because I am not stepping in something that was around forever. It is not like I get to be the face for it until I expire and than somebody else follows. But hopefully, one day it will be an iconic scent!

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Did you know Frida before and how is your relationship?

I met Frida before at a charity event for Gucci. I am impressed by Gucci’s commitment in having major fundraisers. When you start to work with them, they ask you which charities you are involved with and immediatly offer support. They want to promote and help. That was beautiful and inspiring. That is something important for Frida. She spents so much time on all her different collections, she has so much on her plate and still she is so much involved. When we shot the commercial, she was on the phone asking about the accessories I was wearing with the gown. She has got a whole team of people she trusts but still she is there.  Every single step on the way, she is part of it. And you see that coming out in her details.

What is your cause?

There are many different charities I am involved in. Children are the ones I connect the most with. I started my own, went to Africa, visited orphanages, volunteered with Save the Children. It is more hands-on, not standing on a red carpet and shaking hands for the charity event. It is more about an intimate sitting down with people, always involving children.

Blake with parentsBlake Lively framed by her parents, Elaine and Ernie Lively

Do you remember the first fragrance you wore or connected with?

It was definitely my mum’s fragrance. My mum is a strong woman, so she had  a little bit of that cologne feeling, but not too musky. It is light but it means business.

BlakeSistersBlake Lively and her two older sisters

Speaking of Old Hollywood glamour. Do you have a  great tip that you picked up from one of the hair and make-up artists while you were getting ready for the red carpet, that yo use in your own life?

I really love hair and make-up. I always watch the  people who work on me. I ask them about the shading and how they highlight certain parts of the face. I watch the way they do things.

My mum was very effortless, getting ready in a hurry. And whenever I take time getting ready, it is a disaster, more like a funky rooster. But when I get ready in two seconds, it is the best outfit. This is good about always being in a hurry! I don’t like to look too done. Maybe it is a good excuse not to brush my hair. I think there is something sexy and whimsical about it. Wearing a ball gown, but not having your hair in a bouffant. More of having your hair in a messy, tousled look. It just makes me feel that the night could end running bare foot through Central Park. And skipping in a fountain, this feeling of freedom. It is the same if you walk into somebody’s house and it feels like in a museum so that you cannot curl up on the couch. I prefer that lush nature.

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Last year, you were on Time 100 list. How does it feel to be seen as a role moel?

That was shocking and humbling. I still cannot figure that one out. The people I most admire breath magic into real life, wether it is my mum that brings real-life fairy dust to my life. I feel responsibility to young people and the parents, especially if they let their children watch my TV series at a too young age.

Despicable characters have been easy for me to play. With TV shows, it is different, you do something bad but you might be redeemed one year later. In the movie, you get the idea why this person is so twisted, and you find empathy for this person. On my own moral campus, it feels better.

I grew up with a tight family, strong and good. I never had many challenges or temptations that I could give in to because I got an audience. My biggest guilty pleasure is chocolate.

Blake FlorenceGirlfriends: Blake Lively and Florence Welch

You are a style icon. Do you have somebody that you admire?

There are lots of people I look up to but mostly it is my mum. You can look up to people through different elements. Like Grace Kelly, who doesn’t want to be a princess? Than Audrey Hepburn, she is so fun and still so feminine with that boyish sense. Katherine Hepburn, a woman with that manly sense. Florence Welch, one of my dearest friends, who is a real life fairy. So there are different people I look to for different elements,but that one person who has got that full package is my mother.

GGBlake

Gossip Girl is a fashion phenomenon. What did you learn during the show concerning your own style and fashion?

I learned so much. I grew up with my mum who would make the clothes for us all the time, wether it would be for real life or a Halloween costume. Therefore I knew a lot about design because she is also a great decorator. My eye for fashion derives from an early time. But being exposed to all the designer clothes on the set of Gossip Girl, connected me even more. It was like going to the best fashion school you could ever go to. We sat down with Anna Wintour and met with the most iconic designers and were able to ask them as many questions as we wanted to. And imagine trying on that many clothes, 9-15 outfits per episode. 27 episodes per year, per 6 years, and some outfits don’t make it. So It is even more. You start to understand which cuts work, where a bias work, where you have to put the grosgrain under the dress to cinch you in.
Gossip Girl was like the most expensive master course in fashion.

Blake TownBlake Lively in “The Town”

Being a glamour icon, would you also like to try a role that is shabby?

I love being dressed-up. I would wear silk robes in my house whenever. Diamond bracelets while I lounge. Anytime I can play those roles, it is me.

In the movie “The Town”, I was very rough looking. As I did Gosspi Girl at the same time, I couldn’t change my appearance the way I wanted it to be. So I had them spray my hair with brown dry shampoo for long grown-out roots. The team made the skirts very tight at my waist so that it looked like I had a roll-over because I played somebody who doesn’t have the money and time to take care of herself. I love playing characters that are different than me.

Thank you, Blake, for this lovely interview!

LoL, Sandra

Photos: Courtesy of Gucci, WWD, W Magazine, Zimbio and © Sandra Bauknecht

Gucci Première Launch Event in Venice

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Last Saturday, I flew to Venice for the launch event of Gucci Première, the house’s new fragrance legend. Gucci Parfums revealed its new scent during a private cocktail and dinner held at the Hotel Cipriani in the presence of Gucci Creative Director Frida Giannini, Gucci President and CEO Patrizio di Marco, the face of the new fragrance campaign Blake Lively, the film director Nicolas Winding Refn and P&G Prestige Vice President Luigi Feola.

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At the cocktail reception from left to right: Me, Michaela Stein (P&G Prestige), Regina Stahl (German Vogue), Gabi Hässig (P&G Prestige) and Tania Messner (Cover)

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Blake Lively, star of the new fragrance Gucci Première, made quite an entrance during the event in Venice. The American beauty arrived by boat, welcomed by Nicolas Winding Refn.
Here, a look at the fashion and the fragrance:

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Blake Lively wore a Gucci One of a kind sleeveless deep V-neck cocktail dress, fully embroidered with cherry overlapping palettes and raised flower detail around the neckline, burgundy python high heel sandal with metallic spike detail in the back, horsebit bracelet and ring in 18kt pink gold, black corundum and black diamonds and horsebit cocktail ring in 18kt pink gold, black corundum and black diamonds.

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Salma Hayek-Pinault wore a Gucci F/W 2012 black chiffon long sleeved cocktail dress with jet beaded bodice and all over embroidered skirt.

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Nicolas Winding Refn wore a Gucci midnight blue notch lapel two button Marseille suit with white dress shirt, blue grosgrain tie and black leather lace ups.

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Frida Giannini wore a Gucci One of kind silver and gunmetal degrade sleeveless v-neck grey silk crepe cocktail dress with art deco graphic beading and black diamond crystals, and grey suede peep toe sandals.

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Karmen Pedaru wore a Gucci F/W 2012 burgundy georgette silk sleeveless blouse, black velvet wrap skirt, and black suede high heeled sandal.

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Style icon Blake Lively, who appeared in 2011 on TIME magazine’s TIME 100 list, is the face of the Gucci Première and transports the Hollywood glamour perfectly. Her speech was very lively in the true sense of the word.

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François-Henri Pinault, CEO of PPR, framed by Blake Lively to the left and his wife Salma Hayek-Pinault to the right.

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President and Chief Executive Officer Gucci Patrizio di Marco and P&G Prestige Vice President Luigi Feola

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Before the dinner, during the cocktail reception, the fragrance and campaign were revealed to the editors and guests.

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I was sitting right behind Frida Giannini who looked so beautiful in her One of a kind Gucci gown.

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Frida Giannini says about the new fragrance: “Gucci Première is womanly, intriguing and as seductive as the perfect couture gown.”

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The Gucci Première couture gown worn by Blake Lively in the campaign was on display at the event.

Gucci Première Sample

Gucci Première is a sophisticated wood and musk composition. The inspiration derives from the Gucci Première couture collection that debuted at the 2010 Cannes Film Festival (for a previous post, click here please).

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During the cocktail, Nicolas Winding Refn presented his short film which was shot at the famous Sheats Goldstein Residence in Los Angeles.

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The atmosphere at the beautiful dinner was amazing. Unfortunately, we were not allowed to take pictures during the dinner because Blake Lively’s boyfriend, Ryan Reynolds, who was there also that night, didn’t want any to be taken of him.

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Frida Giannini and me Gucci

Frida Giannini with me

Gucci Première Table Setting

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For the outfit post, please click here.

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Gucci Première Lobster

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It was such a beautiful event and I felt very honoured to be part of it. Personally speaking, I like Gucci Première a lot. It is in stores now, here are more details:

Gucci Premiere

Top notes: Bergamot and orange blossom
Middle notes: White flowers and musk
Base notes: Leather and wood
Available as Eau de Parfum 30ml, 50ml and 75ml
Body Lotion 200ml, Shower Gel 200ml and Deo Spray 100ml

Stay tuned for an amazing interview I did with Blake Lively! To be posted very soon!

LoL, Sandra

Photos: Courtesy of Gucci, © Getty Images and © Sandra Bauknecht

My Look: Gucci Première Launch in Venice

Gucci Launch Event

The last days I have been travelling like crazy and I have so many exciting things to share with you. Here is a little teaser of what is coming up. On Saturday evening, I went to the launch event of Gucci Première, the Italian house’s new fragrance for women, at the famous Hotel Cipriani in Venice. Present at the exclusive dinner were also the face of the campaign, Blake Lively, with her boyfriend Ryan Reynolds, and of course Frida Giannini, Creative Director of GucciSalma Hayek and her husband François-Henri PinaultCEO of PPR.

As Gucci Première is inspired by timeless Hollywood glamour, I chose this black and gold outfit matching the colour scheme of the fragrance:
Metallic-striped fringed leather dress, “Kelly” black and gold suede sandals, “Hysteria” patent leather clutch and belted suede leather jacket, all by Gucci from different seasons. Earrings by Chanel from the Paris – Bombay collection and Twenties fishnet stay-ups in black by Wolford. On my nails: “Smoke Red” by Tom Ford.

Stay tuned for photos of the dinner, more information on the fragrance and an amazing interview with Blake Lively.

LoL, Sandra

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Chanel Paris-Bombay Earrings

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Gucci Resort 2013

Gucci Resort 2013

Anne Hathaway grabbed attention yesterday at the European Premiere of The Dark Knight Rises in London in a stunning  shimmering gown from Gucci’s Resort 2013 collection. The long-awaited conclusion to Christopher Nolan’s Batman trilogy is released worldwide tomorrow.

Speaking of Gucci Resort 2013, Frida Giannini seeked inspiration from a glorious 60s and 70s inspired getaway in Capri. Filled with sophisticated and elegant silhouettes, the designer plays with the iconic Flora print. The colours are divine, from vintage-like sorbet shades to earthy tones of beige, brown and black. Embroideries and embellishments on the neckline resemble a summer bouquet. I would love to have every single look!

It is so Bon Chic. Bon Genre!

LoL. Sandra

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LB_ST31_CRUISE_WRTW_43_CUPhotos: Courtesy of Gucci and © Getty Images