Jewish Journal


August 22, 2011

A nice Jewish boy to head up Christian Dior?



Bad news for John Galliano, but good news for the Jews:  Marc Jacobs, a Jewish boy from Jersey will replace Galliano as creative director of Christian Dior.

Galliano was ousted in March after he was caught on camera spewing anti-semitic hokum at a french restaurant Galliano Who knows, maybe it really was just the alcohol speaking, which was his defense in court. The position has been vacant since March and rumor has it (courtesy of Women’s Wear Daily - subscription only) that Marc Jacobs is on the short list.  Currently Jacobs is the creative director of Louis Vuitton, but apparently he might finally be moving up in the world to the multi-billion dollar luxury brand. Ironically, Jacobs was considered for the Dior job in the 90’s, but lost out to Galliano. Now it seems CEO Bernard Arnault, head of luxury conglomerate LVMH Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton is doing his own sort of mea culpa as the Jacobs brand flies of the shelves of stores like Neiman Marcus and Nordstroms.

Since the 90’s, Jacobs has bided his time designing two clothing lines: Marc Jacobs, the high-end couture and the easier-on-the-wallet Marc by Marc Jacobs label available at Bloomingdales and the like.  Still, it had to be entertaining to watch his former competitor commit career suicide in an unglamour episode.  It’s a shame for Galliano, whose contribution to Dior caught worldwide attention.  Jacobs is stepping in at an opportune time because according to New York Times Fashion critic Cathy Horyn, Dior House left something to be desired at Paris Fashion Week last July. 

Dior, after dismissing John Galliano, decided to go ahead with a couture show, using the house’s studio team.

Rather than do something modest — focused, say, on tailoring — or even skipping a season until a new designer could be hired, the house took the risk of exposing inferior work. The poorly designed clothes, in tutti-frutti shades, didn’t look, well, Dior. Even the woman who runs the front desk at my hotel noticed. “Why would a house like Dior use such an inexperienced designer,” she asked me. She didn’t know the details, and she didn’t have to.

If Jacobs does get appointed Dior creative director, Jezebel informs us that he’d be the “first American (and in fact the first non-European of any nationality) to design for Dior.” That he’s Jewish as well seems to add to his exotic cache.

A Jewish American takes his turn at a top Paris fashion house: tongues will wag.


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