In today’s WWD, Bridget Foley has a thoughtful piece about the mismanagement of Raf Simons’ ousting from Jil Sander. In it, she says that Simons was “unceremoniously dumped” from Jil Sander, making a point to clarify that he didn’t just “leave” of his own volition.
When news broke abruptly this past week that this would be Simons’ last collection for Jil Sander (and a spectacular one at that), and that Jil Sander would be returning to her namesake label, it was assumed that Simons was leaving to fill that vacant spot at Dior, or, as Anna Dello Russo told us, that he might be focusing on his own label, because that’s what he wanted to do–not because he was fired.
But maybe he was. WWD hinted that perhaps the clothes weren’t salable. And The Cut noted that Simons ominously told reporters at Versus, where he sat front row as a guest, that he was “leaving Milan tomorrow, forever,”
It’s harder to understand Simons’ departure from Jil Sander if he was fired–it implies he wasn’t doing something right. And he was doing everything right. He’s widely regarded as one of the most exciting, talented and directional designers working today. As Foley rightly points out, where Sander told WWD, in a story about her return, that “now is the time to be daring, there are few new ideas,” Simons is one of the few designers actually putting out good new ideas. Here’s hoping we get to see those good ideas on a runway–either as part of his own eponymous collection or for another house–next season.