It was no coincidence that his models walked in Monaco, home to one of France's most storied raceways. Despite the precipitous weather the collection told a nostalgic "top down, pedal-to-the-metal, wind in your hair" warm-weather tale.
Though '50s automotives have supplied inspiration for Simons's Dior predecessor, John Galliano (remember this bag?), and fellow fashion intellect Miuccia Prada (remember this shoe?) previously, Simons pursued a non-literal interpretation of the color, silhouettes, and culture associated with America's automotive boom. Yes, Cadillac pinks came out to play, as well as metallic accented fabrics that brought to mind the heady flair of tail-fins, but the couture sensibility that Simons has pursued at Dior was still intact as evidenced by lace detailing, bracelet length sleeves, and deb-worthy georgette scarves.
It was through his key detail of the season--silver zippers--that Simons managed to take the energy of the assortment directly from the atelier to auto track. Add to those, midriff baring tops, and mischievously revealed tap-shorts and an unmistakably Cali-surf vibe was queued. In that same vein, curvilinear seams and optic hues reminiscent of long-board detailing informed a passage of day-to-evening cocktail frocks sure to wow equally on the red carpet and retail floor alike. At 59 looks, Simons has tossed his hat into the ring with those (Karl Lagerfeld, Oscar de la Renta) who flex major money-muscle during resort, showing full length collections. While it's still way too early in the Resort season to call this a first place finish, when the checkered flag flies it will certainly be among those vying to snatch the cup.