September 1 2014

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Meet The Gant Girl


When menswear designer Michael Bastian began designing a collection for Gant last season, the rationale behind the merger seemed clear: A designer with a love of classic American sportswear and its idioms taking the reins at a classic American sportswear brand. (Gant is currently Swedish-owned, but never mind that.) And classic American sportswear, emphasis on the sporty, was exactly what they made.

But this season, Bastian and Gant are introducing a women’s collection as counterpoint to the men’s, and the Gant girl—one modeled on Bastian’s publicist, the chic woman-about-town Eugenia Gonzalez Ruiz-Olloqui—is no ladies’ lacrosse player. “It would have been very easy to make her a boiled-down version of what we’re doing for guys and that, I think, would be completely the wrong way to go,” Bastian said. “That, to me, would make her be this guy’s little sister, not his girlfriend. I don’t think most women are so excited by that.”

But a nouveau bombshell? That could be exciting. “I think a lot of younger girls haven’t played around with that persona so much,” he says of bombshell dressing, which strikes the curvier, fifties-inspired note prevalent in the European womenswear collections. For Spring ’11, Bastian took as his icon the seductress to end all seductresses, Marilyn Monroe. “I really wanted it to be about the guys in Marilyn Monroe’s life,” Bastian says of his inspiration this season. “Joe DiMaggio and Arthur Miller—we kinda smashed them together into one kind of jock-y, kind of nerdy guy.” The lover and the vamp are on display in the new video teaser Bastian shot in Miami for the collection, seen exclusively on Watch them courting in Bastian-designed finery below—and then head for the line’s presentation on September 15, which takes their Niagara Falls honeymoon for its scene.

Designer Update