The Ultimate Guide To Which Designers Are Where (Part Deux)

Because even we can't keep up


As Roxane Gay said, 'the world changes faster than we can fathom in ways that are complicated'.

She was talking about feminism, but given the recent rapid turnover of its most revered design figures, it isn't too much of a stretch to apply the same sentiment to the fashion industry. 

Over the last few months, six of the industry's biggest brands have lost - and gained - creative directors for one reason or another.


Some have been dumped by houses in which they left an indelible mark, others dumped a house themselves, and at least one came upon a mutual agreement with their bosses to leave. 

So who are the dearly departed and who are their replacements?

Read on for the ultimate guide, though we'll probably have to update it soon...



In a move that aims to unite 'all Calvin Klein brands under one creative vision', both Francisco Costa (women's creative director) and Italo Zucchelli (men's creative director) have left their posts at the company.

Although the rumours have been pointing to Raf Simons for several months, a replacement has yet to be announced. 

For the moment, the in-house design teams will run the show - though there won't actually be any shows, just presentations for press and sales. 


#SQUAD These are the people that make everything happen! Would be lost without this crew

A photo posted by Balenciaga (@balenciaga) on

When Alexander Wang was appointed as Balenciaga's creative director in 2012, the hope was that he'd inject the house with some of the commercial cool found in abundance at his own label.

While that did happen, for many critics it happened too much: the two brands became indistinguishable.

When the world finally knew that SS16 would be his last collection for the house, few were surprised.

As Vetements' Demna Gvsalia was announced as his replacement, the fashion industry reached a state of excitement not felt for years. 


Expectations were high, but they were reached - and surpassed

As for Alexander Wang?

His AW16 collection was a similar success, and reminded us that - generally - things always work out for the best. 



Loved by all as a person and as a designer, the departure of Alber Elbaz from Lanvin in 2015 didn't make many people too happy. 

Commenting on the matter, Elbaz mentioned the fact that 'everybody in fashion these days needs just a little more time'.

While the industry reverberated with a nodding of heads, fingers simultaneously pointed to the numerous disputes the Israeli designer had with Lanvin's owner in the months leading up to the event.

As the announcement was made in the same week as Raf Simons' departure from Dior, it was widely speculated that Dior was Elbaz's next destination.

Given that we still don't know who Dior's new creative director will be, this now seems unlikely - but who can know.


As for Lanvin, Bouchra Jarrar - who comes from a haute coutue background - was dubbed its new artistic director

We'll get to see her first collection for the house in October.

Tap & Discover @lanvinofficial | A portrait of #BouchraJarrar Lanvin's Creative Director of Womenswear #Lanvin

A photo posted by LANVIN (@lanvinofficial) on


When Hedi Slimane replaced Stefano Pilati as Yves Saint Laurent's creative director in 2012, he made a lot of changes: the 'Yves' was dropped from the brand's name; logos were altered; design work was done from his studio in Los Angeles rather than in the brand's Parisian headquarters, and a commercially-minded punk aesthetic ruled supreme.

Having been rumoured for ages, his departure was finally confirmed this month.

His replacement? Anthony Vaccarello.

Leaving his creative director position at Versus (Versace's sister line) to take up the role, what Vaccarello's vision for the brand will be is uncertain.

As the powers that be have deleted everything - most notably any record of Hedi Slimane's tenure - from their Instagram account apart from a portait of the new creative director, we're already imagining a wildly alternative universe.



From 2007, Emma Hill had been widely credited with transforming Mulberry into a force to be reckoned with in the fashion industry with unique moves like creating a bag in tribute to Alexa Chung ensuring the brand's global success. 

Eventually, however, current affairs caught up with the company and it struggled throughout the credit crisis. 

In 2013, it was announced that Emma Hill would be leaving the brand. 

After more than a year of rumours (everyone from Simone Rocha to Sophie Hulme was cited as the replacement), Celine's Johnny Coca was announced as the man for the job and his first collection for the brand presented a distinctly more masculine look than that of his predecessor.

Sticking to her aesthetic guns, Emma Hill's vision for her own brand - Hill & Friends - in the same season featured lots of pink and shetland ponies.

Mulberry is delighted to announce that Johnny Coca from Celine will start as Creative Director on July 8th 2015.

A photo posted by Mulberry (@mulberryengland) on


When Raf Simons was appointed as Dior's creative director in 2012, he ushered in a new age for the brand in which the flamboyance of the John Galliano years became a distant memory.

As testament to the significance of this occasion, his first show for the house was attended by many of his industry peers: Donatella Versace, Christopher Kane, Alber Elbaz, Marc Jacobs and Ricardo Tisci amongst others were all in the audience. 

In 2015, it was announced he was leaving the company to focus on his own line - and life.

His replacement has yet to be announced, but the rumour radar's most recent focus has been Jonathan Saunders and, most recently,  Jonathan Anderson. And as for Raf's next move? Perhaps he's New York bound for Calvin Klein? 

As with the rest of our list, only time will tell. 

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