The worst kept secret in the fashion industry is finally out: Raf Simons is Calvin Klein's creative director, the label announced on its social media channels Tuesday.
Simons last worked at Dior, where he was creative director from April 2012 to October 2015. In the time since, he has been hard at work on his namesake label—presenting a collection at Pitti Uomo—and sending signals that his eventual appointment at Calvin Klein was inevitable. The rumor mill really heated up this April when Calvin Klein laid off both its men's and women's creative director and announced that it would look to bring on a single lead visionary. There wasn't any doubt that Simons wouldn't get the job once the label's founder said in June that a designer had been decided on but the label couldn't announce it yet. "But the whole industry knows," he said at the time.
And there's no surprise that the person "with a singular vision oversee everything that is creative," as Klein said, is Simons. In its press release, Calvin Klein wrote that Simons will oversee all of its brands and take charge of "all aspects of Design, Global Marketing and Communications, and Visual Creative Services." Simons first collection for Calvin Klein will debut the fall 2017 season.
Klein's sentiments that the label needed a single creative lead was echoed by Calvin Klein's CEO Steve Shiffman. "Not since Mr. Klein himself was at the company has it been led by one creative visionary, and I am confident that this decision will drive the Calvin Klein brand and have a significant impact on its future," said Shiffman in a statement. "Raf’s exceptional contributions have shaped and modernized fashion as we see it today and, under his direction, Calvin Klein will further solidify its position as a leading global lifestyle brand."
Another interested tidbit from the press release is that Simons longtime right-hand man Pieter Mulier has been brought on as creative director. Mulier was brought onto the same role when Simons joined Dior and gained a good amount of notoriety for his role in Dior and I.