MANIFESTO

#63

CHANGE OF SPACE

ARCHIVAL RENAISSANCE

2024.06.22

Text by Francesca Fontanesi

Kim Jones’s new collection is a captivating ode to savoir-faire. Rounded volumes, sculptural knitwear, and playful accessories redefine menswear.

The new Dior Homme SS25 collection is a fascinating ode to the excellence of savoir-faire that combines utility, longevity, inventiveness, and heritage. The lines are sharp, clean; the palette is poetic and sensitive. Inspired by the motifs and monumentalism of the South African artist Hylton Nel, Kim Jones this time weaves together various creative dialogues, stopping at a crossroads between craftsmanship and couture. Archival Haute Couture is given new life when applied to this season’s world, perhaps even more surprisingly in the runway appearance of an unrealized Yves Saint Laurent design for a coat from the fall/winter 1958 season: in the collection, it is presented realized for the first time, heralding further tailored looks. The scarf collar motif that runs throughout the show is taken from another piece by Yves Saint Laurent, Negatif, from fall-winter 1960, here realized based on a ceramic structure. In tailoring and outerwear, rounded volumes predominate, giving a finely sensual finish to the collection. Meanwhile, the knitwear echoes the sculptural forms, simultaneously encompassing playful motifs, prints, and artistic closures, all drawn from Hylton’s world. In the workwear, which includes jackets and vests with riveted pockets and some pieces in linen and cotton, the luminosity of the tones and designs contradicts the roughness of the paradigms from which they were readapted. Dior for my real friends, the phrase written by Nel on one of the sweaters – based on the motif of a plate once given to the artist by Kim Jones – is a reference to the film Love Is The Devil directed in 1998 by John Maybury, dedicated to the tumultuous relationship between Francis Bacon and George Dyer.

“”In this collection, I wanted to focus on the savoir-faire of the ateliers and artisans who work for the maison: the soul of Dior”.

– Kim Jones

Several looks pay homage to archival designs from Dior womenswear: pleated trousers transform into wrap closures, imparting a feminine touch. Footwear focuses on one of the most traditional work shoes of all time: the clog. Shunning its stereotypical image and embracing the more traditional form of a closed shoe or boot, the collection’s clogs are all handmade, crafted from premium materials such as beech wood and calfskin leather. Transforming into derby shoes and motorcycle boots, the wooden sole is replaced with rubber for greater comfort and ease. The influence of studded decorations on the clogs, another delineation of Hylton Nel’s sigils, has also inspired studded embroidery in the clothing line and on the bags. Accessories are simultaneously playful and practical, crafted with customary precision and elevated flair. An icon of the Maison Dior for twenty-five years, the Saddle bag is the focal point of the collection: at times during the show, its construction is softened and its curvilinear contours follow other silhouettes, while noble materials find simultaneous expression in other bags where durable canvas contrasts with raffia or leather. The cloche hats scattered throughout – designed by Stephen Jones in collaboration with Earth Age, a South African company based in Cape Town – are the result of local artisans tasked with crocheting each hat by hand. Ceramic beads, applied in Paris, along with everything else, create a sense of unity among different ateliers united in the name of Dior without hierarchy: the domestic and the occasional, the global and the local.

“This new menswear line celebrates the fulfillment of an individual through their work, heritage, and imprint over time: Hylton Nel and myself for Maison Dior, two parallel paths with different stories; the convergence of a life devoted to ceramics and painting with another dedicated to creation and fashion”.

– Kim Jones

Chanel Overture

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Presented in Paris, the Haute Couture FW 2024/25 fashion show pays homage to the Opéra Garnier. The collection, sophisticated and theatrical, plays with opulent materials such as feathers, velvet, and taffeta, modernizing a scenic tradition.

HAUTE COUTURE

Dior's Olympian Couture

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Among the spaces of the Musée Rodin in Paris, the audience witnesses a parade of peplos and drapery in the name of Dior. A reference not only visual but also conceptual to classical statuary.

DIOR

LIVE STREAMING

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Follow the live stream of the #DiorHauteCoutureFW24 show.

SS25

Hermès brings lightness

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Inside the Palais d’Iéna, an Art Deco jewel designed by architect Auguste Perret for the 1937 Universal Exhibition, the Hermès boys celebrate the beginning of summer with nubuck calfskin shirts and cotton piqué tank tops.