Kris Van Assche addressed a hot topic this season with his confident and polished Dior Homme show: how suits are no longer estranged from what men wear when they hop on a bike or hit a downtown club. Bridging Wall Street and the Bowery, he blended high-end tailoring and luxury streetwear in youthful ways.
As the soundtrack moved between plinking piano and throbbing techno, so did the clothes. The show opened with an array of slender pinstripe suits, including high-gorge four-button styles that are all over the European collections this season.
As Van Assche’s cast of young models whisked across the polished parquet runway, streetwear staples began invading the suits: first denim shirts, vests, jackets and jeans; then military parkas, beefy shearlings and toggle coats.
The designer also winked to founder Christian Dior by placing sprigs of lily of the valley on every seat, and incorporating this and other “lucky charm” motifs favored by the superstitious monsieur as embroideries or chest pins.
Backstage, Van Assche said he wanted to propose a diverse collection — “the total offer” — and it felt very much like a generous gesture, not a cop-out.
“There’s not just one type of man, there’s many,” he said. “This is more about individuals than being clones.”