Gossip Girl is back – and full of zoom fashion

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Beautiful rich people, champagne-soaked evenings and a fluid scandal: you’ll find it all in Gossip Girl. However, it was the fashion worn by the show’s high school students on Manhattan’s wealthy Upper East Side that caused a frenzy, both when the show first aired in 2007, and now with the continuation of 2021.

From the start, returning costume designer Eric Daman intended to ignite trends through a “campy” vision, heightened and heavily accessorized – like a living fashion editorial. “But we never really thought it was going to turn into a wildfire like it did,” says Daman, who helped Patricia Field on Sex and the city at the beginning of his career. Private School It Girl Serena van der Woodsen (Blake Lively) and Queen Bee Blair Waldorf (Leighton Meester) carried their school supplies in Lady Dior, Brooks Brothers and Valentino bags and wore luxury labels like Alberta Ferretti and Armani to sip cocktails in the most invigorating of Manhattan. establishments.

Daman also reinvigorated preppy menswear by styling the bespoke three-piece suits. “The men watching then saw Chuck Bass [Ed Westwick], like that billionaire $ 300 whiskey glass bad boy swirling in pink and bow ties and dressing in ways we’ve never seen, ”said Daman, who has continued to influence our perception of one percent on television. drama Billion located in the world of hedge funds.

Whether in ambitious teen dramas like Aaron Spelling’s Beverly Hills, 90210, soaps like Dynasty, or HBO Succession, the life and wardrobe of the rich fascinate endlessly. And on Gossip Girl, in which the exploits of the perfectly equipped teens are continually exposed and manipulated by the titular omniscient narrator (voiced by Kristin Bell, also returning), fashion is intentionally another compelling character. It was another time, however, when the coveted demographic of women ages 18-34 always looked for inspiration in magazines and in-store shopping.

Lind and Alexander during filming on Fifth Avenue © GC Images

Moreno and Smith busy setting trends

Moreno and Smith busy setting trends © GC Images

In 2008, a New York Times headline screamed, “Forget the gossip, girl; The buzz is on the clothes. Fashion label Tory Burch, whose pieces were featured often, reported increased sales after the episodes aired. Jessica Morgan, co-founder / co-editor of online magazine ‘Go Fug Yourself’, recalls Blair’s signature look: “No one else wore them back then, and she did. Suddenly at Fashion Week there were a ton of junior editors jostling each other in their own headbands. ”

Gossip Girl shaken up late-year trends like ubiquitous leggings (notice Blair’s now famous warning “tights are not pants!”), and created new ones with enhanced versions of school plaids preparatory and tights in bold hues worn with skirts.

Leighton Meester and Blake Lively paved the way for fashion in Season 1 in 2007

Leighton Meester and Blake Lively paved the way in fashion during the original series’ first season in 2007 © Alamy Stock Photo

Gossip Girl came in and took a very specific pop culture moment – when the internet was making celebrities social and people in general were becoming more fashion conscious – and turned it into something avant-garde, ”explains Morgan.

The landscape has changed dramatically in 2021. The target audience of young people this decade is used to styling content on Instagram and TikTok. Zoomers care about style and brand, but value transparency, authenticity and social responsibility. So will be Gossip Girl still have the same fashion and cultural impact – beyond its established millennial fan base?

The sequel, from original co-creators Josh Schwartz and Stephanie Savage, and showrunner Joshua Safran, arrives with a diverse cast and storyline, unlike the first, to address topical issues and experiences. The characters are engaged in activism for social justice, mental health is discussed, and sexual and gender fluency is the norm. “If they know their audience is Gen Z, the show is about to mainstream social issues,” says trend forecaster Geraldine Wharry. “But not in a performative way. That’s another thing: Gen Z is pretty plugged into authenticity versus performance.

Daman puts forward fluid and neutral fashion: Entertainment scion and Instagram influencer Julien, portrayed by Jordan Alexander, has already gone viral with oversized shirts, college sweaters and cycling shorts. Max (Thomas Doherty) runs the members-only club with lacy, floral ruffle shirts à la Harry Styles. “It’s amazing that we can even have discussions and it’s possible for kids, viewers and fans to see the limits of clothing and gender, and how that can be broken down,” Daman said.

In an effort to be more sustainable, he sourced vintage clothing, which reflects the socially conscious beliefs of newcomer Zoya (Whitney Peak) (and her modest budget compared to his debauched peers) and fits the habits of purchase and interest of Generation Z in the early 2000s. fashion. “I feel like I’m buying the same Fendi baguette bag that I bought for Sarah Jessica Parker,” Daman laughs. “I keep repeating these classics.”

Evan Mock travels in style

Mock travel in style © GC Images

Whitney Peak takes time

Whitney Peak takes time © GC Images

Taking his original vision to a new level, he outfitted the new distribution with private school-branded Saint Laurent and Balmain jackets and JW Anderson, Loewe and Dior backpacks. The costume wardrobe showcases its mix of traditional, contemporary and trendy brands: Dior, Givenchy, Mugler, Ralph Lauren, Markarian and even River Island.

The costumes also support and showcase black, native, and people of color brands including LaQuan Smith, Wales Bonner, Telfar, Philadelphia Printworks, Noah and Monse. The showdown of the premiere takes place during a spectacular show by Christopher John Rogers for his Spring 2021 collection, which, due to Covid-19, was only shown in digital format. The brief clip featured in the trailer boosted Lyst’s searches for the 2019 CFDA / Vogue Fashion Fund winner by 14% over the next two weeks.

Immediately after the cast lounging on the steps of the Metropolitan Museum of Art in November 2020, countless “where to buy” stories for Alexander’s white Schutz boots were posted online. Lyst noted a sharp increase in searches for varsity jackets in June (up 19% as of June 20 from May), which is generally a slow month otherwise. Once the paparazzi photos of the young actors’ filming scenes are released, sleuths online and on social media instantly spot and distribute wardrobe credits (and speculate on benchmark red carpet storylines) .

Alexander in New York

Alexander’s outfits immediately grabbed attention on social media © GC Images

Jordan Alexander and Savannah Smith on the set of

And Alexander and Moreno’s costumes were cited to boost sales © GC Images

“Jordan will get out of his trailer, the paparazzi will grab the outfit and fans will identify the bag within 10 minutes,” said a stunned Daman. “The turnover of this one is mind-blowing.” With social media and instant, international online reach, the sartorial trickle-down effect is guaranteed for a quick jet set out of Manhattan, even though the series is currently only airing on HBO Max in the US from July 8.

This attention also prompted Daman to rethink the outdoor stages that are on display to the public and the paparazzi. “I’m going to put on things that I want to see immediately, whether it’s a vintage Dior saddle bag or shoes and boots, which I feel are more ID worthy, and in a way I want too. that we are represented, ”he said. said.

Gossip Girl 2.0 is already repeating history by setting trends and shifting sales figures. However, this time around, it happens before audiences have even encountered the characters or their salacious stories. XOXO, Gossip Girl.

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