Giannini's exit from the storied Florentine fashion house after a decade was announced last month by the French owners, Kering, which said she would leave after showing the men's and women's collections for autumn/winter 2016. No reason was given for that change of plans.
Gucci's press team on site Monday called the decision to redesign the collection from scratch "a new chapter."
The androgynous collection featuring silken blouses with elaborate bows and ruffled necks, blue military-style overcoats and fur-trimmed capes, topped with berets, appeared to be a tribute to French artists, intellectuals and revolutionaries in the wake of the twin terror attacks in Paris this month. The double-G logo, which has been played down in recent collections, was evident in belt buckles.
A team of young designers, led by head accessories designer Alessandro Michele, came out and took a collective bow, to a sustained applause. Gucci said a successor to Giannini would be announced "in due course."
Giannini joined Gucci in 2002 as the lead designer for the fashion house's core leather goods collection, adding women's ready-to-wear in 2005, before being named the sole creative director. Her departure was announced in mid-December, along with that of Gucci CEO Patrizio di Marco, who stepped down at the end of December after 13 years with the group. Giannini and di Marco are also romantic partners and the parents of a young daughter.