File this under: we didn’t see it coming: Zac Posen has been named Executive Vice President, Creative Director of Gap Inc and the Chief Creative Officer of Old Navy. He starts his new post today, the first high profile hire by CEO Richard Dickson, who arrived at Gap last July after a decade at Mattel.
Posen has lately made headlines for his contributions to Ryan Murphy’s “Feud: Capote Vs. the Swans” series. He recreated the gowns worn by attendees like Babe Paley, Slim Keith, and CZ Guest at Capote’s legendary 1966 Black and White Ball at the Plaza, which is the centerpiece of the third episode on February 7. It was a job he was seemingly born to do. When he emerged on the New York Fashion Scene circa 2002, a young graduate of Central St. Martins, he displayed an affinity for the dressed-up stylings of Old Hollywood, and over the years, he became a go-to for stars, dressing the likes of Uma Thurman, Oprah Winfrey, and Sarah Jessica Parker in hourglass dresses with portrait necklines and grand skirts.
In 2019, Posen was forced to shutter his business, a victim of backers who had lost faith in his brand. At the time he told Vogue, “I need to reflect and regroup, and also to look at the world we’re living in and figure what the next move is, where I can share my creativity and my love, and build another community.” Now, he’s putting down roots in San Francisco, where Gap Inc is based.
“I’m thrilled to welcome Zac Posen, one of America’s most celebrated designers, at the onset of an exciting new chapter for Gap Inc,” said Dickson, in a statement. “His technical expertise and cultural clarity have consistently evolved American fashion, making him a great fit for the company as we ignite a new culture of creativity across the portfolio and reinvigorate our storied brands.”
According to a release: Posen will lead design, merchandising, and marketing for the second largest apparel brand in the US, and Gap Inc.’s largest brand, working hand-in-hand with Haio Barbeito, Old Navy’s President and CEO, reporting directly to him.
“Gap Inc. and its brands have shaped American fashion and pop culture for decades and there’s so much potential at Old Navy,” Posen said. “I’m eager to join Gap Inc. now as brand reinvigoration kicks up across the portfolio, rooted in great product, experiences, and a new culture of creativity.” Maybe the appointment isn’t as surprising as all these red carpet pictures make it seem. He was creative director at Brooks Brothers for many years and he designed the uniforms for the Delta Airlines workforce in 2018. We look forward to seeing how Posen puts his stamp on Gap’s brands.