It has become increasingly hard for designers to reinvent their vision season after season – between social media making an impact on our everyday consumption and a never-ending list of hot upcoming talents, industry leaders have to step up their point of view with eternal grit and bravery. Whether it’s Virgil Abloh ushering in a sneaker revolution with Bella Hadid, Joan Smalls and Rihanna as its main ambassadors, or Clare Waight Keller showing us Givenchy's 21st century princess via devoted client Meghan Markle, we have compiled a list of the names that will be influencing your wardrobe as they debut a new vision for the world’s biggest fashion brands.
Clare Waight Keller: The Birmingham-born designer, who became the first female artistic director for Givenchy in spring of 2018, was previously Chloé’s creative director and also honed her skills at labels like Ralph Lauren’s Purple Label, Tom Ford, Gucci, Calvin Klein and Pringle of Scotland. Of course, Clare, who has no background in haute couture, immediately gained colossal attention when she dressed Meghan Markle in a bespoke minimalist royal wedding dress to tie the knot with Prince Harry in May. Aesthetically, the designer is a hopeless romantic, and she is also gaining a reputation as one of the most formidable British fashion designers of our generation. We can’t wait to see how she will keep evolving within the legacy of legendary Givenchy!
Riccardo Tisci: After some time off following his 12-years resurrecting Givenchy and heading up epic collabs at Nike, the Italian designer debuted this week as the new creative director for Burberry with Kendall Jenner and Irina Shayk leading his runway. Riccardo shocked the entire industry months before his first Burberry show as he unveiled a new, more street direction for the classic British label, eschewing the legendary tartan plaid, then scandalously coming up with a new logo and banning real fur in upcoming collections. Fashion’s favorite rebel has some big shoes to fill as his appointment is one of the most significant changes to happen in UK fashion in decades. Burberry is country's most iconic and powerful fashion brands, which means its new leader will have the power to change the direction of the fashion scene in London and beyond.
Virgil Abloh: His official job title is men’s artistic director at Louis Vuitton, yet Virgil is more of a street culture leader. The architect-turned-DJ-turned-hype king is known for being the ultimate game changer in the industry, not just because he’s Vuitton’s first African American director and founder of street-praised Off White, all of it with no formal fashion education, Virgil is also in charge of phenomenal collaborations with the likes of Nike, Takashi Murakami, Jimmy Choo, Moncler, and, most recently, Ikea. Yes, Ikea! Oh, and did we also mention he also holds the role as creative director of the Kanye West empire? Virgil has gained the highest position in the industry, rapidly changing what you wear and redefining the idea of “luxury” for the masses.
Hedi Slimane: Love him or hate him, Hedi holds the biggest name in Paris Fashion week. His magic? He can sell. Anything. At any time. The innovative designer is one of the most imitated to date and has been a revolutionizing force ever since his beginning at Dior Homme – it was he who basically invented skinny-everything for men – and he continued to display his classic yet unbelievably sharp eye at Saint Laurent Paris, a name change (from Yves Saint Laurent), for which he is responsible. Success seems to be a familiar word for Hedi, who now has been appointed creative and artistic director of French fashion house Celine… that’s right, there's no longer an accent on the first e. A classic name-changing Hedi move!
No doubt Slimane is a brilliant choice for Celine, despite his two-year break from the industry. With a boisterous, but very French, opinion and unapologetic controversial tendencies, he's set to prove his massive influence by introducing menswear for the first time as he re-opens the case on why he's an energy so needed in today’s industry.