After more than a year of back-and-forth speculation, The New York Times is reporting that Raf Simons, former Creative Director at Jil Sander, is to be named as John Galliano’s replacement at Christian Dior.
To review, John Galliano was fired from the label in March of last year after he was caught on video making several anti-Semitic statments, and since then, the brand has been searching for a replacement. In the meantime, Bill Gaytten, Galliano’s second-in-command, has been at the helm of Dior, but his collections have been either panned by critics, or met with lukewarm praise.
For months, it seemed as if Marc Jacobs was a shoo-in for the position, but after Dior halted talks with the designer in November, the fashion stock has been going back and forth, speculating as to who might take over. Simons, Alber Elbaz, and most recently, Haider Ackermann had all been named as possible successors.
But after Jil Sander announced she would once again be taking over at her epynomymous label, we wondered what Simons’ fate would be. Simons gave a tearful goodbye at the end of his last show with the brand in February. The designer will bring his minimalist menswear senibilites to the brand, which will be a departure from the more flamboyant aesthetic Galliano brought to Dior.
Simons is understandably excited to get started at his new position, saying: “The first time I heard about the Dior position,” he said, “I thought, ‘This feels right.’ ” Simons’s first collection for the brand will debut in July (Fall 2013 couture). I can’t wait to see what he offers!