Logos Lose Their Power in New ‘Gossip Girl’


Even after the beloved teen drama “Gossip Girl” ended in 2012, viewers could not stop talking about fashion. And now the show is back with the Gen Z update. Premiering July 8 on HBO Max, the reboot takes place in the same world of the rich Upper East Side elite as the original, but this time it’s barely recognizable as the same place.

The show is significantly more diverse. The high school clique of the original show was mostly white and straight. Now there are several colorful characters and plots revolving around their exploration of sexuality. The clothes the characters wear – maximalist sneakers, vintage bags, tote bags that highlight their values ​​– reflect a more cross-cutting worldview.

“Are they last season Tory Burch apartments?” Unbelieving Blair Waldorf asks a student in Season 2 of the original series.

Today the question would be: “These? Tory Burch apartments

Costume designer Eric Daman remembers visiting private schools on the Upper East Side and seeing groups of girls at Tory Burch apartments while designing the wardrobes for the original show. “Okay, these young girls are wearing these designer brands and they have cult favorites,” he said, reinforcing the idea. Today in this setting you will see ballet flats decorated with several logos.

“The giant Balenciaga sneakers have replaced Tory Burch’s home,” Mr. Daman said. The change is an indicator of what people, and especially young people, think of today’s “it” shoes. Blending streetwear and luxury in one commercial object, sneakers are now the epitome of being cool.

The new shoes are also part of the transition to sneakers that were rarely seen on the old show. In the reboot, Zoya Lott, a stranger from Buffalo, wears Adidas X Beyoncé Superstars in a key scene where she meets the popular kids at school. The shoes are a gift from Julien, his half-sister and a well-established Manhattan native. Appearing in hot commodity shoes symbolizes a turning point for the character.

“Shoes are like a bridge to this other world for him,” said Mr. Daman.

Major brand logos will be rare sights at the new show. Mr Daman said large logos “do not feel authentic to what’s going on in this generation.” “They are less loyal to brands and less stereotypes about them.”

Logos used to express status and a certain level of wealth, but today logos are usually meant to convey political or social values. At the reboot, Zoya is carrying a purse from Revolution Books, a progressive independent bookstore in Harlem, and a “Recycle Black Dollar” tote bag from Melanin Apparel.

Whitney Peak, who plays Zoya, said Zoya’s bags were “all from really great stores.” “The bags tell very well who he is.”

“Tights are not pants!” Blair was declared famous in the original series. Blair and her mean girl group often wore tights in a variety of colors and would be offended when they saw someone wearing skirtless leggings.

Mr Daman said the reboot was “a world of no tights”, except for some plain black tights. And what would certainly be Blair’s horror, cycling shorts Definitely trousers now.

Queen bee Julien often wears cycling shorts, sometimes styling them with a collared shirt and tie. The Athleisure movement, Mr. Daman said, “is a big part of our culture and what’s going on in fashion. As we come out of the pandemic, people hold on to their sweat but still want to get dressed.”

Jordan Alexander, who plays Julien, sees his character’s cycling shorts as a highly relevant item of clothing today. “I don’t think it matters that you’re on the Upper East Side and within the one percent,” he said. “You would still be rocking shorts.”

In the show’s first iteration, everything big and new. Serena was carrying large bum bags, none of which were bought in second-hand stores. “If I had brought a second-hand bag to Serena van der Woodsen, she would have hit me with it,” Mr. Daman said.

Today, many of the bags at the reboot are outdated, staying true to Gen Z’s resale-buy trend. “We made many vintage Dior Saddle Bags, Fendi Baguettes,” Mr. Daman said. “It’s great to have eco-sustainability with these high-end bags.”

Generation Z has been called the Green Belt or the Sustainability Generation, and there’s a reason for that. Studies have shown that Generation Z make shopping decisions based on how sustainable a business isand at a higher rate than other generations. They want what they buy and wear to reflect their values.

The sizes of the bags have also changed. Mr Daman said the big bum bag is “not just jam” today. Micro Jacquemus Le Chiquito has yet to appear, but he said he will likely appear soon.

In the original show, Chuck Bass was most often seen in a suit that strictly adhered to gender norms. “If I wore a women’s blouse to Chuck Bass, it would be a joke,” Mr. Daman said.

In the reboot, Max Wolfe, the flirty troublemaker of the group and the character most similar to Chuck, wears a white lace female Paco Rabanne shirt. Sexually fluid, Max can pull her off in a way that isn’t vindictive or excessive. “Using clothes that don’t conform to gender norms and don’t look dragged and aren’t very sexy – she identifies as a man but she’s wearing this blouse – expands the dialogue about what gender norms are and how we can have that. don’t talk through clothing,” said Mr. Daman.

In the first version of the show, Chanel was huge in terms of the style of the characters, but also crucial to getting other designers to open their collections to the show. “We didn’t have access to all designer homes and we weren’t taking credits,” Mr. Daman said. “When Chanel told us yes, the floodgates opened.”

Chanel pieces, which have historical value today, are of great importance for the characters. “These archival pieces that have a legacy of their own, especially for all-thing-loving Zoomers who love going back to the late ’90s and early 2000s,” Daman said. Classic Chanel bags and accessories feature heavily in the fashion show as they are pieces that still resonate with younger generations.

Any OG “Gossip Girl” fan knows that headbands are very important. “Blair Waldorf’s headband has a life of its own,” said Mr. Daman. “It was always like her security blanket, too Type A for someone who was too tightly wrapped. It was like the last piece of a well thought-out outfit that held it all together.”

Gen Z characters no longer need it. “They have a different kind of self-confidence that comes from just being,” said Mr. Daman.

In the reboot, the mean girl Monet de Haan said, “She’s a headband “When she sees Zoya, who is from out of town. Her half-sister Julien immediately unties the silk scarf and puts it around Zoya’s neck.

Headbands may be scarce, but ties of all kinds are available. Another member of the gang, Audrey Hope, wears hair ribbons or scarves that look like a tie around her neck. “It really shows both sides of her – very feminine, classic energy and a little bit more masculine side,” said Emily Alyn Lind, who plays Audrey.

The desire to ditch the stuffy headband speaks to the times. “We are in the internet age,” said Ms. Alexander, who plays Julien. “People no longer feel they have to be one thing. We were exposed to a lot of things.”


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