Suzy Menkes is reporting that Bernard Arnault will name Raf Simons artistic director of Dior tomorrow morning (Cathy Horyn says Wednesday).
“I feel fantastic,” Simons told the New York Times. “It is one of the ultimate challenges, and a dream to go to a place like Dior, which stands for absolute elegance, incredible femininity and utter luxury.”
The storied French house has been without a leader, or creative director, since letting go of John Galliano in the wake of his anti-Semitism scandal over a year ago. Nearly every designer, from Marc Jacobs and Phoebe Philo to Alexander Wang and Sarah Burton has been rumored, at some point over the past year, to be in the running for the dream job but Simons, who, according to Bridget Foley was “unceremoniously dumped” from Jil Sander last month, has finally signed on the dotted line.
Simons’ final collection at Sander received a tearful standing ovation, and there wasn’t a soul in fashion who didn’t hope he’d add womenswear to his eponymous collection. Instead, he’ll design ready-to-wear, accessories and haute couture under the Christian Dior label. As if in celebration of the news, his first collection for the brand will be couture, shown in Paris this July. Menkes reports that the designer will keep his eponymous menswear collection. “My aim is a very modern Dior, but at the end of the day, I also look back,” Simons told the paper, offering just the slightest hint of what’s to come.