After months of speculating and hinting heavily that designer Marc Jacobs would be taking the helm at Dior, the rumor mill says his previously inevitable appointment to the head of the French fashion house is looking a lot less likely.
Women’s Wear Daily reports that talks between Jacobs and Bernard Arnault, who owns both Dior and luxury conglomerate LVMH, where Jacobs currently has an eponymous label and designs for Louis Vuitton, have gone cold — interesting when you consider that just three weeks ago, sources said talks to install Jacobs at Dior were “progressing.”
Now, sources say Jacobs’ demands and other complications caused the negotiations to go south. For example, one of Jacobs’ requests was that his design team at Louis Vuitton come with him to Dior, a move that would make countless people’s jobs redundant. It would also leave Vuitton, which is LVMH’s biggest moneymaker, without a single creative employee. (And we’re sure Jacobs’ high salary expectations didn’t help matters, either.)
To make things worse, it’s also thought that Celine designer Phoebe Philo, who was the frontrunner to replace Jacobs at Vuitton when he made the move to Dior, doesn’t want his job. She’s only been at the helm of Celine since 2008, and she is said to want to continue to build on the success she’s had there so far.
So who else is being considered for the job? The same names that have been mentioned before: Alexander Wang, Raf Simons and Jason Wu have been approached, and so has Riccardo Tisci — but Tisci is apparently more interested in staying at Givenchy than he is in moving to another house.
Big-name designers like Azzedine Alaïa, Haider Ackermann, Lanvin‘s Alber Elbaz, Alexander McQueen‘s Sarah Burton and Balenciaga‘s Nicolas Ghesquiere were asked about the job shortly after John Galliano was fired for making anti-Semitic remarks, but all of them turned the job down.
Now the search is focused on any designer, young or old, “with a strong affinity and respect for the brand’s glamorous DNA, and a vision for taking it forward in the post-Galliano era,” WWD reports.
But fret not, Jacobs fans. It’s not impossible that Arnault and Dior will circle back to a future with Jacobs. As we’ve asked before, what other available designer working today has what it takes to run that place? Jacobs is the total package, and even if Dior is still one of the most profitable luxury houses in the world, it can’t afford to have a second-stringer running the show.