Kim Jones’ decision to exit Louis Vuitton was heard around the world. After a near 8-year tenure, Jones had not only made the luxury fashion house his own, but helped define a visual language for the brand as a whole. His decision thus paved the way for Virgil Abloh’s entrance, and confirmed his new role as Artistic Director of Dior Homme, which he has rechristened to the simpler “Dior,” colloquially referred to as “Dior Men’s.”
Today’s spring/summer presentation marked Kim Jones’ first collection for the brand, and a subsequent new chapter in his life as a designer. Jones’ appointment has many debating over what he would ultimately deliver. Expectations were understandably high given the positivity with which his swan song show at Louis Vuitton was received.
Following months of assessing the odd leak, or enigmatic Instagram post, the results of his SS19 collection are finally in. Centered around a towering KAWS BFF masterpiece made from 70,000 flowers in the likeness of Christian Dior and his dog Bobby, the show was opulent, and true to the brand’s couture heritage.
It was, after all, a considered amalgamation of its couture sensibilities and projected future within the realms of a more streetwear-orientated audience. The looks beamed with elegance, which was further supported by the show’s setting and who’s who attendance; Karl Lagerfeld, Michèle Lamy, Skepta, and many more.
The collection’s chosen palette was for the most part subdued, and only dabbled in more adventurous, bright yellow fields towards the end of the show. For thew most part, it stuck to pastel shades of pink, tan, and white, with washed black adding a degree of overall seriousness. Double-breasted blazers and slim dinner jackets featured heavily, with a focus on unique fastening; from the Matthew Williams-designed buckles seen on belted accessories, to the Stephen Jones-designed headwear, and cross-body blazer embellishments.
Among the flurry of subtlety, printed suits interrupted from time to time, covered periodically by transparent PVC outerwear, adding a much-needed sport-like touch to the overall presentation. This season’s bee motif, re-imagined by KAWS, also appeared plastered over the odd piece, lending a somewhat playful edge to it all.
Despite the rollout of delicate lace shirting, and fine, semi-transparent underlayers, the collection was framed by harsher silhouettes in the way of heavy-duty cargo pants, robust luggage samples, squared sunglasses, and thick chainlink chokers — a somewhat brutal approach not at all common to Dior. And in true fashion of the season, carabiner accessories appeared regularly, along with other belted bag options.
And among it all, AMBUSH co-founder, Yoon Ahn, who joined Dior Men’s as its creative lead for jewelry design, showed off an impressive array of pieces, such as earrings, and the aforementioned chokers. Lest we forget that Yoon Ahn brings with her a rich design history, as her Tokyo-based label has already crafted accessories for clients such as UNDERCOVER, OFF-WHITE, and Louis Vuitton when it was still under Jones. AMBUSH also debuted its “WAVES SS19” collection mere days ago.
With little more to be said about the collection, apart from a brief “Congratulation, Mr. Jones,” we will let you sound off in the comment section below with your opinion.
And in case you didn’t get your fill of suiting, be sure to check out the latest offering from COMME des GARÇONS HOMME Plus right here.