Years ago, in that strange and wondrous time called the 80s, mens' clothing ads were different. Every man was in an Armani style power suit, presumably on his way to work, and about the age of my dad. Designers were definitely targeting who they thought could buy their clothes, moneyed older men, by featuring them in their ads. Now, even though the target consumer probably hasn't changed, menswear ads seem to be going the way of womens' - that is, featuring too young boys who could never afford the clothes and overly sexual scenes (almost always homo erotic) suggesting that maybe menswear designers think that guys in rock bands can keep them in business. Even Zegna, that final refuge of buttoned up men in expensive suits, has had an about-face with boys in windbreakers, and one of them is too bashful to tell the other guy he likes him. Z Zegna is expensive Sunday brunch gear for CEOs, not really fodder for a bromance. There's just something about a 16-year old boy in Dior Homme that's a little too jokey for a brand that should be aspirational. Though we've been wondering the same thing about women's ads since forever. --BRETT KANE
Dior Homme Fall 2012: Modern Military
Long Nguyen is the co-founder and style director of Flaunt. PARIS--If there's ever consistency in Kris Van Assche’s work for Dior Homme, where he's been the creative director since 2007, it's that he often sticks to a singular idea and develops a collection around it. Last season’s "Less And More" collection, while delivering on the goods at retail, lacked the spark that’s central to the appeal of men’s designer fashion. On Saturday afternoon at the Club de Tennis on the outskirts of Paris, Mr. Van Assche delivered a radically different collection called "A Soldier on My Own," centered around military uniforms. This time the set of the show was a simple and straight-forward runway with white doors (replicas of the doors at Dior’s Avenue Montaigne headquarters) and charcoal wooden platforms instead of the multi-room presentation from last season. Sticking to a muted palate of military olive greens and navys allowed Mr. Van Assche to apply more sportswear and casual clothing elements--like a long wool zippered parka coat--to the more tailored tradition of Dior.