In a radical move for the fashion industry, the Italian super brand Prada has appointed a co-creative director.
In what is undoubtedly the chicest job share in history, Belgian designer Raf Simons will join the fashion house’s long standing leader Miuccia Prada at the Milanse label and will collaborate on all creative decisions.
The first results of this partnership, which officially commences in April but has been in the pipeline for some time, will be showcased in September when Prada unveils its first co-created womenswear show. But the duo will work together on all aspects of the Prada business which spans menswear, fragrance and accessories.
Today Prada said the partnership “is born from a deep reciprocal respect and from an open conversation”.
Where Miuccia Prada leads the rest of the fashion world follows. This modern approach to running a fashion house is a reflection of her determination to innovate. “As times change so should creativity” noted Prada, in an announcement made at Milan Fashion Week. “Its is a reaction to the era in which we live – an epoch with fresh possibilities, permitting a different point of view”.
Simons began his career in furniture design before beginning his menswear label in 1995. After a stint at Jil Sander he was announced as the creative director of Dior in 2012. Since departing from the Parisian house in 2015 to focus on his own projects, fans of his intellectual and pared-back approach to design have been eagerly awaiting news of his next move.
Prada, whose work is considered a litmus test for culture and politics, has long noticed a synergy between her vision and that of her new partner.
The decision to capitalise on this shared interest is undoubtedly motivated by a need to future proof the company. It is also indicative of a brand looking to safeguard its financial success. After a difficult few years, the Prada Group boosted revenues 2 per cent to 1.57 billion Euros in the first half of 2019 but continues to under perform in the crucial Chinese market.