Jil Sander's previous comeback collection from spring/summer 2004
For months now speculation has been mounting in fashion circles over exactly what Jil Sander’s first comeback collection for her eponymous label would look like. Eight years ago – after leaving the label twice before – the fashion pack thought the German designer had walked out for the very last time. But in a surprise turn earlier this year, Jil returned! She’s now settled firmly back into the driving seat of the brand she started in 1968 and is about to (and most probably with the upmost subtlety) present the first new line – men’s wear spring/summer’13 in Milan. Behind her exits Raf Simons, whose take on Jil’s signature minimalism – which led the way for intelligently-dressed super-sharp women in the late eighties and early ninties - had a slightly more feminine and frivolous touch; one that became as popular with fashion editors as it did with celebrities like Tilda Swinton and Diane Kruger.
In true low-key form, Jil Sander the woman has kept pretty schtum about the switch-up, but she has now spoken about the direction of Jil Sander part deux (or is that quatre?) to The New York Times' Suzy Menkes. “I am having to bring it back to our heritage,” She explained, “I’m working less on decoration, more on form - pattern-making and materials, with a lot of dresses in the collection - in a good modern way.” And she also revealed that the majority of the spring/summer collection for 2013 – which doesn’t get unvieled to press and buyers until September – is complete. So what can we expect? According to Suzy, Jil spoke a lot about her iconic blazers, how they fulfil the wardrobe want for clothes that work day to night. Although the first offering this week is men’s, it’ll be a strong indicator of what’s to come. After all, her strong tailoring and crisp shirting could easily fit the unisex bill. With existing loyal fans and new-found followers thanks to her uber successful Uniqlo collaborations, could it be that Raf’s blown-out florals and pink coats may be a definite part of Sander history? “Fashion has always had ups and downs,” she told Suzy in reference to women who had seemed “intelligent and emancipated” but more recently turned to girly glamour. Watch this space!