The March issue of Harper’s Bazaar just won’t quit…and it hasn’t even hit newsstands yet. In addition to pieces on Kim and Liz, Prabal and DVF, Daphne and Hillary, the magazine also features an interview James Franco conducted with his friend Frida Giannini.
The Gucci creative director dished on all sorts of things with the actor/director/soap star/student/overachiever who had this to say about the designer: ”Frida and I have been in sync since we met. I love her work, and she supports mine. Creatively, I know we will always be in line with each other.” (Also, Franco joked that his next project is “making a documentary about you and Gucci.” But we just don’t know if he’s kidding.)
On Gucci’s pragmatism:
JF: When you see the clothes at a fashion show, sometimes they’re more extreme than what you see in the store, right?
FG: Well, not always at Gucci. I believe what we are showing on the catwalk needs to be in the stores. The big stores like in New York or London or Paris, the main flagships, they always have the entire collection–even the extreme pieces. There are people who are waiting for the extreme pieces from the fashion show. We are not the kind of company that thinks, Okay, I’ll do something for the runway, and I’ll make an entire new collection to sell.
FG: Chanel is always doing incredible sets, and they change it every time. We’d rather spend money on other things than make a big, spectacular thing you would see for 10 minutes because we are working for six months on a collection.
On fashion globalism:
JF: So then, because Gucci is all over the world and you’re thinking about people actually wearing these clothes, do you have to think slightly differently for each part of the world?
FG: I never think about it because I think people in the world, from the U.S. to Asia, love Gucci because it’s about aspiration. I don’t think if I made a speciic collection for a Chinese woman, she would be happy. They don’t want something speciic for them. I did a collection that was very Russian, inspired by the artists in Russia in the ’20s and ’30s who left and went to Paris. It performed very well all over the world–except in Russia.
JF: And why, do you think?
FG: I talked to the managers in Russia, and they said they didn’t like the reference to them. So this is an example that was quite strange. Maybe if I make a collection inspired by India, with the colors of India, people in India won’t like it.
JF: I know Harper’s Bazaar is here listening to us, but if you’re criticized heavily in a big fashion magazine, does that have any real effect on sales or what people like?
FG: The first couple of seasons, I was in shock sometimes because I had very mixed reviews, especially because it was right after Tom Ford. Can you imagine the pressure? I am a woman; he is a man. I am Italian; he is American. Very, very different. Now I am much more relaxed; sometimes I receive very bad criticism and read between the lines of the bad reviews.
Sometimes I have thought it was a good suggestion for me because I know that the journalist has a great mind and has much more experience than me. Generally speaking, I’m very open to criticism. I will never say, “I had a bad review from you; I don’t want to meet you anymore.” I believe in what I am doing, and I believe in my ideas, but I think it is very constructive to be open to understanding other thoughts.