February 25, 2012

Take A Bow

Seeing Raf Simons cry during the finale of his final show for Jil Sander is making me weep uncontrollably. His exit didn't have the grandeur of Tom Ford's last show for Gucci; nor was it abrupt and scandalous as John Galliano's termination. The drama came from the tears of a talented designer who loves (and will clearly miss) his work. Watching a designer who cares so much is truly inspiring. Raf brought a new aesthetic to Jil Sander that was so natural and effortless that many of the brand's followers respected and adapted to it quickly - the rest of them who didn't quite agree will be appeased as Jil Sander herself will return to her eponymous brand to take lead. It will be interesting to see if she will carry on from her point of view forged years ago, or if she will continue to design around Raf's current vision which many have come to praise. There is no better person to follow Raf Simons than Jil Sander herself.

Rumor has it that Raf will take the job at Dior. His designs were a perfect fit for the modernity of Jil Sander, but I cannot wait to see what he will do with the heritage and flamboyancy associated with the French mega brand.

Another water-works inducing piece of news is the return of Hedi Slimane as creative director for Yves Saint Laurent. Stefano Pilati brought a darkness to YSL that I will miss, but I cannot tell you how much I have waited for Slimane's return to fashion! I was a fan when he was designing for YSL Rive Gauche, and clearly I and thousands more became disciples after his revolutionary work at Dior Homme. Slimane's leaving DH was a hard pill to swallow for so many because he would shockingly stop designing completely after less than fruitful talks with the corporate leaders about creative freedom. This return to fashion is so highly anticipated and I cannot wait to see how Slimane will design womenswear and how he may perhaps change YSL.

- jerome

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