Kim Jones is joining Fendi as artistic director of haute couture, ready-to-wear and fur collections for women. He will continue his role at the creative helm of Dior Men’s, thus giving the British designer the reigns at two major household-name labels within the LVMH luxury stable.
Jones’s first womenswear role will see him work closely with Silvia Venturini Fendi, who will create the accessories and menswear collections at the marquee Italian brand. The third generation of the Fendi family has maintained all divisions since the death of Karl Lagerfeld, who had been a firm figurehead at the brand since 1965, designing womenswear collections for the label for over half a century. “My warmest welcome to Kim, to whom I am bound by deep respect and friendship. I am looking forward to taking the Fendi universe to the next level with him,” commented Venturini Fendi in a press release. For his part, Jones said it was a “true honour” and a “huge privilege” to work across “two such prestigious houses”.
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I would like to profoundly thank Monsieur Arnault @LVMH, Pietro Beccari, Serge Brunschwig and Silvia Venturini Fendi @silviaventurinifendi for this incredible opportunity. Working across two such prestigious houses is a true honour as a designer and to be able to join the house of @FENDI as well as continuing my work at @Dior Men’s is a huge privilege. Photography by @brett_lloyd
The news puts an end to the rumour mill surrounding Lagerfeld’s Fendi successor. The uncertainty was in contrast to the situation at Chanel, where Lagerfeld also held the position of creative director for over 30 years, and where Virginie Viard, director of the creative studio of the house, took over the reins following his death. Jones, an industry trailblazer responsible for transforming the menswear market, seems to have been an obvious choice for the chief executive of LVMH, Bernard Arnault. “Kim Jones is a great talent and since joining, he has continuously proven his ability to adapt to the codes and heritage of the LVMH houses while revisiting them with great modernity and audacity,” commented Arnault. “At Fendi, I am convinced that his vision and passion will highly contribute to the success of the women’s collections.”
Jones, who founded his eponymous brand after John Galliano snapped up his Central Saint Martins graduate collection, and then rose up the ranks at Dunhill and Louis Vuitton, brings to Fendi an encyclopaedic knowledge of streetwear, sportswear and countercultural style. His off-beat, ultra-luxe accessories and subversive collaborations never fail to go viral, awaited with the same avid sense of anticipation by his friendship circle, which includes the Beckhams, the Kardashian-Jenners and Kate Moss.
“What I love about Kim is that he never looks back or rests on his laurels,” British Vogue editor-in-chief Edward Enninful said of his friend last year. “He’s brought so much to fashion and evolved from a cool, streetwear pioneer into the chicest international designer – someone who caters to youth but exhibits a natural sophistication that appeals to all generations.” Now, Jones’s influence spans two of the biggest brands in the world.
Previously published on British Vogue