PARIS — If you’re a talent-laden designer with a buzzed-about signature collection, could a major job at a big fashion house be only a phone call from a headhunter away?
Au contraire. Devoted creative directors are the industry’s preference du jour, threatening to send the double-duty-designer model to the scrap heap of fashion history.
“At the core of this business, we must have — as much as we can — full dedication,” said Pierre-Yves Roussel, chief executive officer of the fashion division at LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton, which includes brands such as Celine, Loewe, Givenchy and Emilio Pucci. “Regardless of the talent, the amount of time you spend on things becomes critical. There’s so much work to be done.”
“For a brand to have a fully devoted creative director, it is a great advantage because he or she can become part of the brand DNA,” agreed Robert Polet, president and ceo of Gucci Group. “Five years ago, we decided to give every brand a creative director and that was one of the best decisions we made.”
Executives, headhunters and consultants agreed Tom Ford’s exit in 2003 as Gucci Group’s creative director, where he oversaw both the Gucci and Yves Saint Laurent brands, was a decisive moment that foreshadowed the dedicated designer business model.
More recently, a long list of designers have mothballed their signature collections to focus on heritage brands, among them Riccardo Tisci for Givenchy, Kim Jones for Dunhill, Esteban Cortazar for Emanuel Ungaro and Stuart Vevers for Mulberry — and now Loewe, which showed Saturday. Olivier Theyskens, who is expected to exit Nina Ricci before his contract expires in October, had also put his label on hiatus — but may seek to resurrect it, as reported.
Breaking News: @louisvuitton's men's artistic director @mrkimjones is leaving the French fashion house after nearly 7 years. Jones joined Louis Vuitton in 2011, following a three year tenure as creative director of British luxury goods brand Alfred Dunhill. Jones is to exit Louis Vuitton after showing his fall 2018 collection for the brand in Paris on Thursday. Read the full exclusive story on WWD.com. Link in bio. #wwdnews #wwdfashion
For men’s fall 2018, @giuseppezanotti drew on elements from streetwear, sport, biker, combat and rock ‘n’ roll. Pictured here are a pair of shoes from the collection, featuring zippers, rhinestones, and silver hardware. Head to WWD.com to see a roundup of the accessories from Milan’s men’s fall 2018 shows. #wwdfashion (📷: Andrea Delb)
To celebrate the 25th anniversary of @ralphlauren’s snowboarding collection, the brand is mining its archives. The iconic brand is reintroducing vintage styles and dropping new designs for a color capsule that will be available in Ralph Lauren stores and @openingceremony on January 25. The capsule will consist of 10 pieces, including the Snow Beach Pullover, pictured here, which is a collector’s item that rapper Raekwon wore in Wu-Tang Clan’s “Can It Be All So Simple” video. #wwdfashion (📷: Tom Gould)
For @rochasofficial’s pre-fall 2018 collection, creative director Alessandro Dell’Acqua channeled the sophisticated and intriguing Catherine Denevue in the film “Belle de Jour.” Polished collarless coats, midi skirts, suits and ’60s graphic motifs were all featured in the collection, adding a sense of discreet luxury. See the rest of the photos on WWD.com #wwdfashion
“We tried to produce clothing of that couture quality, but the most daunting part was that we only had a matter of days [to do it],” said costume designer Lou Eyrich, who recreated Gianni Versace’s iconic looks for @americancrimestoryfx. Eyrich searched online retailers and vintage shops for original pieces from the design house and for @penelopecruzoficial, who plays Donatella Versace. Head to WWD.com to read how she created the Versace world. #wwdfashion
Only three months after her stellar debut catwalk season, @kaiagerber has inked her first big design collaboration –– with @karllagerfeld. The collection blends Lagerfeld’s Parisian chic aesthetic and the model’s signature West Coast casual style via RTW, accessories, footwear and more. The #KarlLagerfeldxKaia collection will launch in September with a series of events. Get all the details on WWD.com. #wwdnews #wwdfashion
Harrods plans to remove the famous statue of Princess Diana and Dodi Al Fayed from the bottom of the Egyptian escalators and hand it back to Mohamed Al-Fayed. “We are very proud to have played our role in celebrating the lives of Diana, Princess of Wales and Dodi Al Fayed at Harrods and to have welcomed people from around the world to visit the memorial for the past 20 years,” said Michael Ward, Harrods managing director. “With the announcement of the new official memorial statue to Diana, Princess of Wales at Kensington Palace, we feel that the time is right to return this memorial to Mr. Al Fayed and for the public to be invited to pay their respects at the palace.” More on the news, with reporting by @loreleimarfil, at WWD.com. #wwdnews