September 27, 2022
Sixty-eight pairs of identical twins dressed in matching catwalk finery–two dazzling Lurex gowns with shark-bite cut outs, two tailored silk ensembles embroidered with cherry blossoms, two pinstripe suits with ladylike handbags —created a mic-drop moment of visual drama that brought the house down at the Gucci show at Milan Fashion Week on September 23, reports The Guardian.
To cast the show, Gucci had sent a secret scouting party to Twins Day, a twins convention in Twinsburg, Ohio. The audience, divided between two separate rooms, did not know they were watching twins until the final moments, when a screen dividing the rooms was lifted and each model joined hands with a sibling who had been walking in tandem with them throughout the show.
To look at identical twins can feel like viewing a natural wonder of the world. Twinning is “so familiar—but so powerful,” said the show’s creative director, Alessandro Michele, after the show. Twins, he said, remind us of “the connective tissue” in families and in society.
“I use the runway as a theatrical stage, and fashion speaks strongly to ideas of otherness. I know that I have another side of me—I meet him when I go to my therapist. We all have another side of us, and sometimes we meet that person, and hold hands,” said Michele. Before the show, guests were sent a Rorschach test to complete, rather than invitations, because “this show is about what you find when you dig inside yourself, so I wanted to prepare you all for that,” the designer added.
On the catwalk, toy Gremlins peeked out from sleek leather handbags—because “Gremlins are small animals, but they can be naughty. They are like your own fear of your evil self.” Michele’s unboundaried eccentricity might seem an unexpected fit for Italy’s biggest luxury brand, but it reaps dividends, as sales of more than $10 billion last year attest.
Michele dedicated the show to the women he calls his “twin mums.” He grew up with his mother, Eralda, and her twin, his aunt Giuliana, two women so close that they seemed “magically multiplied,” he said.
Research contact: @guardian