Could Sarah Burton Replace John Galliano?
Replacing John Galliano will be no easy feat, but the people on the hunt for the next Dior couturier aren’t in any big hurry to find someone to fill the beleaguered designer’s awfully large shoes. But there could be something working in favor of one of the names that’s been thrown in the ring: Alexander McQueen‘s Sarah Burton.
Among the people who have been rumored, suggested or even considered to be in the running for the job, Burton has something that none of the others do: royal cachet. If it turns out that Burton really is designing Kate Middleton‘s wedding dress (a claim that both she and Alexander McQueen‘s corporate reps have denied outright), that’ll improve her chances of being offered the job. And why? Because Bernard Arnault, who owns the company that owns Dior, is just as obsessed with the royal family as we are. Per WWD:
According to a source, Bernard Arnault is transfixed by royalty, and would be keen to launch Dior alongside the next-generation couple, just as Princess Diana helped catapult the image of the brand in 1995 when she toted a Lady Dior bag and, a year later, donned a midnight-blue, bias-cut Dior gown by Galliano to attend the Costume Institute gala at the Metropolitan Museum of Art.
We don’t know whether or not Burton would leave Alexander McQueen for Dior — and we can’t be sure she’ll even be offered the job. Her aesthetic, while beautiful, isn’t for everyone. And after Galliano immolated his own career by drunkenly heaving anti-Semitic slurs in public, we wouldn’t be surprised if Arnault was on the lookout for a slightly more conservative choice. And on at least one account, that’s exactly what he’s doing:
According to a Paris source, the powers that be are placing less importance on marquee names, prioritizing “someone who understands Dior and fits the needs of the company.”
In the meantime, Givenchy’s Riccardo Tisci is said to be sketching out what Dior would look like under his creative leadership, in an effort to demonstrate that he does understand Dior. Other names said to be in the running include Tom Ford, Olivier Theyskens, Nicholas Ghesquiere, Haider Ackermann and Prabal Gurung, among others. In the meantime, Dior’s atelier is led by Bill Gaytten, who had worked with Galliano since the 80s. Gaytten is currently hard at work drumming up a cruise collection.
But honestly, we just want to know who’s getting this job already. (Related: Who is designing the royal wedding dress?!)