Named Fendi’s inventive director of high fashion, ready-to-wear and fur collections for girls last September, Kim Jones, model new to ladies’s style, mentioned he didn’t want any respiration room and plunged proper into the job, which introduced the Roman home to its very first couture present for the spring season.
“I’m a doer,” Jones mentioned from behind his black face masks at a preview. “I don’t suppose ready helps folks generally.”
He actually didn’t fret for a theme, instantly selecting Virginia Woolf’s “Orlando” and her sister Vanessa Bell, a painter, inside designer and member of the Bloomsbury Set. Jones mentioned he’s admired these two ladies his “total grownup life,” flicking by the digital camera roll on his cellphone to indicate a wall-sized e-book shelf at his house, one row devoted to first editions of Woolf and different books by Bloomsbury authors.
“Fendi was based in 1925. ‘Orlando’ was printed in 1928. So they arrive from the identical level in historical past, actually. And I believed it was fairly fascinating how they’re each nonetheless very fashionable and related,” Jones mused.
Some designers enter a heritage home and scorch the earth. Not Jones, who embraced all the Fendi household, at the start Silvia Venturini Fendi, inventive director of equipment and males’s put on collections, and her daughter Delfina Delettrez Fendi, jewellery artistic director, who walked the present in a peachy robe. Each ladies have been concerned in designing the couture assortment and have been in Paris this week for remaining fittings and accessorization on the Palais Brongniart, the venue for the filmed present. Jones additionally cribbed one man/lady look instantly from a sketch by Karl Lagerfeld, who designed Fendi’s furs and girls’s rtw for 54 years. The style legend left an indelible mark on the home — and big sneakers to fill.
Jones actually appears as much as the duty. He’s assured, deeply cultured, a whiz with excessive luxurious, a strolling encyclopedia of style and a intelligent communicator who is aware of how one can leverage social media by way of cool inventive collaborations and the involvement of his well-known mates. Cue the solid for this couture debut: Kate Moss and her daughter Lila, modeling collectively for the primary time. Ditto Christy Turlington and her nephew James, plus Demi Moore, Bella Hadid, Cara Delevingne, Adwoa Aboah and Naomi Campbell.
Solely 16 seems to be have been introduced, paraded by a surprising glass maze erected within the type of Fendi’s well-known double-F emblem — one other Lagerfeld invention — to a bespoke soundtrack by Max Richter.
It was onerous to get an entire sense of Jones’ angle on ladies’s put on with such a small pattern, particularly when you X out the seems to be on males. (Jones made clear the lads’s outfits have been solely because of the gender-hopping that takes place in “Orlando” and that he’ll solely do males’s at Dior.) To make certain, he has vary — displaying each tailleur and flou — and excels at intense floor ornament, proper all the way down to hand-embroidered boots recalling the frescoes by Bell at Charleston farmhouse, the Sussex house of the Bloomsbury Set that Jones typically visited as a young person, portray within the backyard.
He’s additionally not afraid of displaying off a girl’s physique, opening the present with Moore striding out in a silky black pantsuit with a plunging off-the-shoulder neckline. Hadid adopted quickly after in a sheer, body-hugging robe and matching cape, all in watery blues, recalling how Woolf drowned herself. The attire had a interval really feel with their Empire waistlines and lengthy trains, however they have been additionally subtly attractive, unabashedly romantic and exquisitely realized.
Campbell closed the present in a marble-print ensemble, the motif recalling the hand-painted books Woolf and her husband Leonard printed, and the colourful stones at Rome’s Galleria Borghese. Her trailing cape was a patchwork of fur, and along with her hair dotted with wavy Murano glass combs, she dropped at thoughts a royal statue.
Jones arrives at Fendi after having left his mark on Dunhill, Louis Vuitton males’s put on, and Dior males’s put on, which he continues to pilot. He appears to have a system down pat.
“Once I get to a home, I have a look at what the home’s pillars are, and I have a look at what the purchasers need,” he mentioned. What’s extra, he seems to be for enlargement avenues. He is aware of Fendi does nicely with couture, which was launched by Lagerfeld in 2015 and has primarily been centered on fur to this point. “I wished to broaden the vary of what they will have, like an attractive costume, issues like that. I like to take a look at what the corporate has and what it doesn’t have and the way we will lengthen that.”
It was an auspicious begin, and Jones pointed Fendi in an intriguing route.