Dior Homme S/S 13
After a brilliantly pared-down show based on white t-shirts for his own eponymous label, Kris Van Assche went all-in on navy for his Spring 2013 collection for Dior Homme, as nearly every look—save a handful in a stony gray and some bright pops of crimson—came head-to-toe in a rich, deep blue that was the starting point for a show that had a vaguely nautical feel to it. There were officer’s jackets that had a naval feel, as well as a number of sailor sweaters with ropes for stripes, but Van Assche knows better than to fall in slavish thrall to a frivolous inspirational notion, instead delivering a collection that was one of his strongest demonstrations yet of the freshness he has brought to Dior Homme since taking over in 2007. There was a clean elegance and neat minimalism to his suits, cut slim but not skin-tight, with some jackets cinched around the waists like parkas for a playful twist. Van Assche also presented a number of looks in mesh, offering them up as a study of construction and tailoring, an idea that found a pleasant echo in the cream piping that appeared in a handful of the next pieces, a rigorous examination of craft and design. It was a strong and intelligently presented collection from Van Assche, a reminder that part of the wonder of fashion is that you can find transcendence even in the purest simplicity.