From the club to the countryside, hanging out with the group of teens epitomising the city’s current spirit
With a series of devastating terror attacks, the surge of the far right and continued public protests over labour reforms, the last eighteen months in Paris have been turbulent and traumatic. But against this backdrop of unrest and uncertainty, a brighter future is prevailing in the form of youth and creativity; making their presence known through nightlife, music and fashion, a new generation is rising up to claim the streets of the storied city as their own.
Epitomising this are the Gucci Gang. Made up of Angelina (15), Annabelle (16), Crystal (14), Thaïs (15) and honorary male members Donovan (18) and Clément (17), the girl group are gaining notoriety thanks to their effortless style (“I mostly go to thrift shops,” admits Annabel) and their carefree, unapologetic attitudes. Like most teenagers, they party, smoke and hang out – especially on Yulya Shadrinsky’s rooftop, the photographer who followed them from club to countryside over the course of a weekend for this shoot. But unlike others their age, they have over 45,000 people watching them Instagram, with their adolescent antics well on the way to gaining them notoriety both online and IRL.
Still, despite the attention they draw for documenting everything from nights out to escapes to the countryside, the gang don’t let their iPhones dictate their lives. “Social media is cool,” shrugs Crystal. “Of course, there is a bad part about how people get obsessed with followers. But if people like you, you get followers anyway. You just have to keep it real. You can’t be somebody that you’re not.” Annabel agrees – “Instagram went a bit crazy lately. But I keep on posting what I want, what I do, without retouching – I don’t care.” “I don’t take it too seriously,” adds Angelina, even though her work as a model has seen her score the cover of L’Officiel – and get recognised in the street.
“People get obsessed with followers...You just have to keep it real. You can’t be somebody that you’re not” – Crystal, Gucci Gang
If you’re wondering about the name, it’s purely unofficial – but fashion is a part of their lives, and the city (famed for its historic fashion culture) is experiencing an uprising of young, exciting designers spurred on by the success of Vetements. “Paris is having its moment again! After years of being so conservative, a new generation is finally making the city break her own rules,” comments stylist Samia Giobellina, who cites labels like Y/Project, Koche, Wanda Nylon, Aalto and Lea Peckre as key to this. Gang member Thaïs agrees. “There is a great energy in the new generation of Parisian designers. Things are moving.”
Remaining clothing credits, in order of image appearance:
Thaïs wears jumper Ellesse, jeans Miss Sixty, trainers Nike. Annabelle wears top VICTORIA/TOMAS, jacket Huber Egloff, trousers Léa Peckre, trainers Nike. Donovan wears tracksuit Ellesse, sneakers Achilles Ion Gabriel. Angelina wears bra Calvin Klein, vest Tommy Hilfiger, jeans Diesel, trainers Nike. Crystal wears jumper Calvin Klein Jeans, trousers Afterhomework (Paris), trainers Nike. Clément wears shirt Johannes Adele, trousers Etudes Studio, his own jumper, trainers Nike.
Annabelle wears top Champion, knickers Calvin Klein, velvet trousers Ignacia Zordan, trainers Nike. Thaïs wears hoody Huber Egloff, jeans Faith Connexion, trainers Nike. Angelina wears t‐shirt Tommy Hilfiger, coat Maison Margiela, jeans Neith Nyer, trainers Nike. Crystal wears hoody Wandy Nylon, trousers Huber Egloff, trainers Nike.
Annabelle wears jumper Huber Ergloff, jeans Faith Connexion, coat Wanda Nylon, socks Falke, trainers Nike. Angelina wears top Huber Egloff, jacket Julien David, jeans Pepe Jeans, socks Falke, sneakers Achilles Ioan Gabriel. Donovan wears rollneck Avoc Paris, jeans Levi’s, coat Applecore, socks Falke, shoes Ann Demeulemeester. Crystal wears sweater Léa Peckre, jeans Levi’s, coat Masha Ma, socks Falke, trainers Nike, silver earring Huber Egloff. Clément wears shirt and shoes Ann Demeulemeester, shirt and jeans Icosae, socks Falke. Thaïs wears rollneck Aalto, jacket Masha Ma, trousers Miss Sixty.
Photography Yulya Shadrinsky; fashion Samia Giobellina; hair and make-up Yuka Sudo; makeup assistant Kana Nagashima; set manager Marita Gurcciani; production Sam Ghiyati at 20yrs; talents Angelina Woreth @WM Models, Annabelle Fererra, Crystal Murray, Thaïs Klapisch, Clément Mbath, Donovan Alexis