Bottega Veneta’s having a tough time of its at the moment. Formerly a growth star at Kering, it appears to be one brand that’s suffering from the luxury downturn more than some others. And that’s made worse by its Kering stablemates Gucci and Saint doing so spectacularly well.
So every new collection ultra-important and that goes for the new pre-fall 17 offer – this isn’t just a collection it’s a (hoped-for) recovery story.
Will it do the trick? Well, it’s got some undeniably beautiful clothes in it, although with those headline-grabbing stablemates sending out collections that generate massive buzz every season and pre-season, beautiful might not be enough.
Not that Tomas Maier and his team have come up with a collection that will exactly fade into the background. The silhouettes and details plunder the 1940s, the 60s and even the 90s (that pink tracksuit is pure 90s revival than 21st centre athleisure). Retro influences are always a strong talking point.
But perhaps it’s the bags that should be getting the most attention. This is, after all, the luxury sector and that’s where the big money is.
They look commercial: mini or mid-sized satchels, totes and envelope bags, a variety of standout chain handles, statement hardware clasps and some new, more colourful and patterned takes on the brand’s signature intrecciato woven leather.
None of this is necessarily going to light up the life of the average 20-something who buys Gucci or Saint Laurent. But Bottega has never targeted that market. This label is one for wealthy women who want to stand out but like their fashion more anchored in the real world rather than the costume party. As a turnaround story, it’s a good start.