Browse all

The haute normcore of Dior Homme's FW22 show

The brand just presented its new collaboration with Birkenstock

The haute normcore of Dior Homme's FW22 show The brand just presented its new collaboration with Birkenstock

Today the Dior Homme FW22 show was staged in Paris with a collection that stood out for a remarkable sobering up compared to the past – driven by the transformation of the staples of the brand's couture archive into menswear items. One should speak more of a classic dèfilè than a show, in the sense that far from focusing on pyrotechnic gimmicks, eccentric sets and bombastic artistic collaborations, there was only one catwalk that faithfully replicated, albeit on a smaller scale, the Pont Alexandre III in Paris. Sobriety was not only in the set-up of the show but in the collection itself, dominated by grays, blacks and blues: a palette that was inspired by that of the Parisian landscape seen from that point on a winter morning. The mood wants to recall the origins of Dior, the classicism of its superb couture designs, which meets the rigor of English tailoring synthesizing itself in the silhouette of a Bar Jacket for men. A collection in which, however, whose rigor whose sartorial support is tempered by the relaxed fit and, above all, by the sporty and utilitarian flair of the looks and above all by the  by the new DIOR by BIRKENSTOCK clog, which practically all the models of the show wore.

The fact that the new clog was present on almost all the looks already makes it clear that the brand wants to invest a lot in this collaboration, putting sneakers and boots on the side, and investing instead in a piece that, to be the most recent collaboration of Dior, is so pleasantly unpretentious and minimal that it can be one of the potential hits of the coming year in terms of footwear. It's no mystery that in 2021 mules exploded, with the @muleboyz page gathering virtually the entire community of slip-on shoe fans under a single umbrella, and if you consider how the brand's shoe designer, Thibault Denis, is very fond of the classic Boston Clog that appears very often on his Instagram page,  it was only a matter of time before the brand produced a version. 

The surprising thing, here, is that the clog, revisited in this new luxury version (we had already seen the versions of Rick Owens, Valentino and Jil Sander) that makes it the keystone of a speech that has, at its center, a haute normcore, a kind of new basic language made of simple clothes like wool polo shirts,  blue shirts with white stripes, loden and military coats cropped at the waist, workwear pants or elegant but soft enough to be able to skate, black turtlenecks. According to some, the moment of attention that clogs are experiencing is a consequence of the lockdown, which has made us too fond of slippers; according to others it is a reaction to a sneaker culture that is too crowded and branched and that therefore converts into the simplicity of clogs and all that footwear without laces and classic that has been so appreciated in recent years. On this idea of normcore Kim Jones, however, builds a discourse on the new role of couture, on the ability of savoir faire to erase distinctions of gender and dress codes.

With this collection we are accentuating the idea that there is a side of the fashion world that is increasingly interested in the creation of elegant and wearable items, without succumbing under the weight of its own concepts – that in this case reinterpret the idea of genderless fashion by mixing masculine and feminine accents, adapting archival designs such as the bracelet by Victoire de Castellane with the hyper-modern aesthetics of Yoon Ahn that makes it become a men's jewel. A luxury item can be aspirational for the values it expresses but also (and more simply) because it looks like a garment that we would like to wear, nor does eccentricity at any cost always pay: «I wanted to look at the archive, at the purity of the beginnings of the House, at its original impulse. We looked at the initial collections and focused on the architecture, taking these elements and transforming them almost instinctively in a masculine way for today», explained Kim Jones.

Among other things, to analyze the looks of the show, eccentric details are not lacking such as leopard capes, jerseys full of trinkets, jackets decorated with artificial flowers and a series of blazers and coats with long fabric traces that are knotted on the front bringing the drapery on the front of the jacket.  The general impression, however, remains that of witnessing the evolution of an aesthetic whose name still escapes us: close to normcore by choice of garments and colors, but still mindful of the lesson on graphics, fits and constructions that streetwear and gorpcore have left her.