Giuliano Calza, founder and creative director of GCDS, is one of the youngest Italian designers to have made his mark on the global fashion scene. His brand – now the acronym for Giuliano Calza Design Studio – has revolutionized the streetwear code, choosing pink as a signature colour and generating a creative universe that blends pop culture, luxury and Italian craftsmanship. Named one of the most influential figures in fashion by Business of Fashion, Giuliano’s multi-award-winning, ironic, sophisticated made-in-Italy style quickly won over an eclectic and enthusiastic community of celebrities and icons, from Beyoncé to Sophia Loren, thanks to collections that transcend pre-set definitions. His bold creativity comes across not only in ready-to-wear clothes and best-selling accessories, but also in cutting-edge projects: in 2020, in the midst of the pandemic, GCDS was the first brand to put on a runway show in the metaverse, earning the digital cover of Dazed. Sealing the digital show’s success were Amina Muaddi, Dua Lipa and Hello Kitty, among others, sitting (virtually) in the front row.
After earning a degree in political science at the Università di Napoli L’Orientale and another in marketing, Giuliano Calza moved to Shanghai for further university studies, and went back four years later to work as an image consultant in various sectors. He analysed the Chinese market, learned Mandarin, and saw the future coming in the form of maxi-logo prints. In China, he conceived and created the first GCDS hoodies and socks; marketed online back in Italy, they sold out in no time, officially setting him on the path to his own personal Italian street style. He developed collections, garnered the attention of stars like Kim Kardashian and Kylie Jenner, and earned an invitation to New York Fashion Week. In 2017 GCDS had its international debut on a shocking-pink runway.
Through it all, Giuliano has always had his brother by his side. Giordano Calza, born in 1984 with an innate entrepreneurial bent, graduated from Università Bocconi and began his career in 2010 as an advisor in the banking sector, then moved on to the world of telecommunications. In 2013 he left Milan and moved to China with Giuliano, where he sharpened his managerial skills and studied the market, which remains an important one for the brand. As CEO of GCDS, he supervises the development of global business, commercial agreements and financial guidelines.
Season after season, GCDS continues to export fashion made in Italy around the world, with ever more sensational collections and with its single-brand boutiques: Capri, and Paris, inside Printemps luxury department stores, are the most recent openings, joining the ten flagship stores in China. In July 2022, Beyoncé wore GCDS on the cover of British Vogue, and then in the video for one of her hits; at Milan Fashion Week for SS 2023, the international press applauded the new collection. Quality and superior craftsmanship, together with a personal, social-media-oriented aesthetic, have led GCDS to evolve from an exponentially-growing streetwear brand to a new luxury icon, while staying faithful to Giuliano Calza’s fundamental values, as well as his aim: to speak to new generations, interpreting social changes through language that’s ironic, free, and unconventional. Just like him.