Kim Jones, the British menswear designer who left Louis Vuitton in January, will become the artistic director at Dior Homme in April. He replaces Kris Van Assche, who had helmed the menswear arm of Dior since 2007.
SEE ALSO : Kris Van Assche to leave Dior Homme
Jones is a widely liked figure in fashion, with 345k Instagram followers and famous friends on speed dial including Kanye West and David Beckham, both regular guests at his show. His finale at Louis Vuitton took things to another level. He walked to applause, flanked by two of his best friends, Naomi Campbell and Kate Moss, wearing Louis Vuitton-monogrammed trench coats. Before the Dior Homme announcement, he was linked to top jobs at Versace and Burberry.
In a statement, Jones said: “I am deeply honoured to join the house of Dior, a symbol of the ultimate elegance.” He also thanked Dior CEO Pietro Beccari for the opportunity, the man widely thought to be the mastermind behind the move. He worked with Jones at Louis Vuitton, and moved to Dior in February. Both brands are part of the LVMH luxury group. The CEO paid tribute to Jones in his own statement. “I admire his creative vision, which combines both his own inspirations of contemporary culture and his own reinterpretation of specific codes and heritage of a house,” said Beccari.
Jones’s tenure at Louis Vuitton was characterised by just that combination. The designer managed to mix the wealthy traveller feel of the house that began as a luggage brand in 1854 with the cool streetwear references of his own history. As a young designer, he started his career in London in the 90s, working with sportswear brands including Umbro, peaking with a collaboration between Louis Vuitton and Supreme at the beginning of 2017. Something unthinkable the previous decade – in 2000 the streetwear label received a cease-and-desist letter from Vuitton for using their famous monogram on a skateboard – was made tangible by Jones. It was a big hit. Consumers queued up outside pop-up stores in July, with many of the pieces resold for 1.5 times their original price.
Dior Homme will be hoping that Jones can bring his cool factor to the brand. Van Assche’s reign has been successful but without fireworks. His aesthetic was sharp suiting with graphic details, and he worked with celebrities including Robert Pattinson, A$AP Rocky, Mr Robot’s Rami Malek and Depeche Mode’s Dave Gahan.
Van Assche was promoted from the design studio to lead Dior Homme in 2007, with the departure of Hedi Slimane. It was Slimane – due to present his first collection for LVMH brand Celine this autumn – who first gave Dior Homme a jolt of stardust in the noughties, during his seven-year stint. His ultra-skinny rock’n’roll tailoring was favoured by rock stars of the era including Pete Doherty and Johnny Borrell. Van Assche built on this work with similar silhouettes and references. It is understood that the Belgian designer will stay within the LVMH group with an announcement imminent.
SEE ALSO : Kim Jones to leave Louis Vuitton
Jones’s first collection for Dior Homme will be in Paris in June. A-list stars in the front row and cool references on the catwalk can be expected.
(Source: The Guardian )