Gucci S/S 09

Gucci S/S 09
We have long been convinced of Frida Giannini's ability to create sexy, glamorous garb, but she truly outdid herself with Gucci's spring offerings. Straying from the fabled fashion house's usual rock-chick aesthetic, Giannini instead went for a seventies-safari-meets-Studio 54 look. With garments that run the gamut from the Verushka-inspired khaki separates to Jerry Hall-worthy disco dresses to Talitha Getty-style caftans, the collection is smart, stylish, and eminently shopable.

Though we immediately wanted to run out and snap up the entire spring line-especially the Petite Jacket ($2395) in red, Iman Ankle Strap Sandalsicon ($1275), and Chiodo Cocktail Bracelet ($6900)-we realize that sometimes it's twice as nice to be able to create your own personalized riff on the runway look. Bearing this in mind, we gathered a group of reasonably-priced pieces that reference the Italian luxury label's ready-to-globetrot spring collection for today's Inspired By story.

1. Forever 21 F2701 Sunglasses ($7)
Gucci has long been the purveyor of superbly structured sunnies that always look of-the-moment and on-trend. This season, we fell for their modern take on the classic aviator style. Spring for these Forever 21 metal-framed specs to shield off the summer sun and rack up the chic points.

2. V. Max Agate Agate Drop Necklace ($106)
One of the most dazzling components of the collection was the agate-and-geode detailing found on the clothes (dress straps were covered in these stone-slices) and accessories (notably, the bracelets and belts). While the runway versions are stunning, we like the costume-like price of this V. Max drop necklace instead. Featuring five geodes in different colors, it's an incredibly unique way to add a bright and earthy feel to your more modern fashions.

3. Eddie Bauer 3/4-Sleeve Stretch Shirt ($50) in French Blue
Giannini styled each slim-and-slouchy pantsuit with a smartly tailored button-up in a contrasting color (a purple suit was shown with a teal shirt, while a baby blue suit was paired with indigo). Our favorite, however, was the red rendition, which was worn over the powder blue Button Front Shirt ($595), much like the one shown above. Our selection from Eddie Bauer is a well-tailored and versatile piece that would look just as smashing under a bright blazer as it would with a pair of denim cut-offs. Style it high or low, it's sure to take you through the warm summer months.

4. H&M Olive Pants ($35)
One of Giannini's signatures is a boyish pantsuit, which she reinvents for each collection. These H&M Pants reflect the willowy silhouette of the Gucci trousers, while the olive color is spot-on for any girl's trek through the concrete jungle! Not only do they have the perfect tapered-and-cropped shape to show off a statement shoe, they're also a more polished alternative to our beloved boyfriend jeans.

5. bebe Leatherette Washed Moto Jacket ($139)
There are only a few fashion houses that can execute a perfect motorcycle jacket, but Gucci manages to master this wardrobe staple time and time again. This season, Giannini gave the classic black piece a twist and created a summery, aqua blue version for the runway. If you're reluctant to invest in a bright jacket, perhaps this vegan-friendly version will seem like a smarter choice. Not only does it match the original in cropped length and zipper embellishments, it's also a steal!

6. Forever 21 Boardwalk Straw Fedora ($13)
What city-safari would be complete without a straw topper? Many of the perfectly appointed Gucci looks that came sauntering down the catwalk were accompanied by fedoras wrapped in ribbons. Try this alternative to complete your own look!

7. Topshop Fluro Trim X Body Bag ($50)
Prior to her current position as creative director of women's ready-to-wear, Giannini was in charge of all of Gucci's accessories. With such a handbag-centric background, we always pay particularly close attention to the brand's bags. This season, Giannini worked her magic on clutches and totes in exotic materials such as coral and sand-colored python. This Topshop selecion is similar to Gucci's Mint Python Clutch ($2590) in shape and print, and is a sure-fire way to make a statement without having to say a word.

8. CoverGirl Eye Enhancers 1 Kit Eyeshadow ($4) in Turquoise Tempest
One of the first elements that immediately drew our attention to this stellar show was the rich turquoise hue found on the Gucci models' lids. When we asked makeup guru Pat McGrath (the artist responsible for the runway makeup) what she used to create the look, we were pleasantly surprised to learn that her shade selection was from CoverGirl. A shadow that is as nice on the eyes (literally) as it is on the wallet...score!

9. bebe Estelle Platforms ($149, 212.232.3777)
Today's Inspired By was in part launched by the look of these bebe shoes, as they're a nod to the oh-so-desirable platforms spotted on Gucci-campaign-star, Rihanna (she's got them in gun-metal). Wear this shiny black pick, or try Aldo's Bevin Strappy Sandals ($125) in bone, with some tapered trousers or a flowing frock for a spring evening out.-KM

Runway Images, from firstVIEW.
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