Dior Men’s cat-filled set was a collaboration with ceramic artist Hylton Nel

Dior Men’s Kim Jones speaks to Wallpaper* about his collaboration with South African ceramicist Hylton Nel, revealed as part of the designer’s S/S 2025 show today in Paris (21 June 2024)

Dior Men S/S 2025 by Kim Jones Show Set with Cats
Dior Men’s S/S 2025 show set, featuring blown up versions of Hylton Nel’s ceramics
(Image credit: Photography by Adrien Dirand, courtesy of Dior)

The ‘homespun monumentalism’ of South African ceramicist Hylton Nel was at the heart of Kim Jones’ latest collection for Dior Men, seeing the showspace populated with blown-up versions of his distinct cat sculptures. 

‘He’s an old friend of mine, I’ve known him maybe 12 years,’ Jones said at a preview of the collection. ‘I love his work, and I wanted to take that idea of working with an artist and working it through the Dior archive.’

Dior Men’s Kim Jones reveals collaboration with ceramicist Hylton Nel

Dior Men S/S 2025 by Kim Jones Show Set with Cats

(Image credit: Photography by Adrien Dirand, courtesy of Dior)

Located this season in the grounds of Paris’ Val-de-Grâce – a departure from the École Militaire, where Jones has shown in recent seasons – the specially constructed showspace saw guests overlooked by the playful, naive figures, which are adorned with colourful hand-drawn motifs and feature elements of the human form, like arms, legs and hair.

One of the sculptures depicts a cat in a pair of high heels, and is from Jones’ personal collection (at the preview, a selection of the original pieces surrounded the designer). Last year, partly down to Jones’ support, the UK’s Charleston House held an exhibition of Nel’s work, titled ‘This plate is what I have to say’. The home, formerly the residence of the Bloomsbury Group’s Duncan Grant and Vanessa Bell, previously inspired Jones’ S/S 2023 collection, the designer having first visited as a teenager.

Dior Men S/S 2025 look on runway featuring model holding ceramic

(Image credit: Courtesy of Dior)

For this collection, Jones said he was inspired by visits to Nel’s own art-filled homes on the outskirts of Calitzdorp in South Africa’s Western Cape. ‘He’s lived in two houses in the same town for years and years,’ says Jones. ‘[There is] this huge sky. That was what really drew me to the colour palette, the blues and the pinks when you are there at different times of the day.’

In the collection, motifs from Nel’s work, like hand-drawn dogs and birds, became pins, intarsia knits and embroidery, evoking the teeming shelves of ceramics in the artist’s home. Hats, meanwhile, were created in collaboration with Stephen Jones and Earth Age, a Cape Town-based company that hand-crocheted the beanie-style headwear, which was then finished with ceramic beads applied in Paris. ‘The homespun with the salon, the global with the local – the artisans’ skill, intent and pride in their work unites all,’ said Dior.

Dior Men S/S 2025 by Kim Jones Show Set with Cats

(Image credit: Photography by Adrien Dirand, courtesy of Dior)

The designer also said the collection was ‘a celebration of work and an expression of who somebody is and what they achieve through work’, nodding to house founder Christian Dior, whose womenswear collections continue to be an inspiration to the designer.

‘I look at it because of the purity, and because a lot of it is rooted in menswear,’ he said of working from the Dior archive. Elsewhere, the ceramic collars referenced an unrealised sketch by Yves Saint Laurent during his tenure at the house. Other pieces saw workwear instilled with the fabrications and silhouettes of the house’s haute couture collections.

‘In the case of Christian Dior, Hylton Nel and myself, it’s an idea of parallel paths with different stories,’ continued Jones. ‘It’s lifelong work in ceramics and paintings and lifelong work in fabrications and clothing. There is an idea of and dedication to art and the applied arts shared by all.’

Discover more from Paris Fashion Week Men’s S/S 2025.


Fashion Features Editor

Jack Moss is the Fashion Features Editor at Wallpaper*, joining the team in 2022. Having previously been the digital features editor at AnOther and digital editor at 10 and 10 Men magazines, he has also contributed to titles including i-D, Dazed, 10 Magazine, Mr Porter’s The Journal and more, while also featuring in Dazed: 32 Years Confused: The Covers, published by Rizzoli. He is particularly interested in the moments when fashion intersects with other creative disciplines – notably art and design – as well as championing a new generation of international talent and reporting from international fashion weeks. Across his career, he has interviewed the fashion industry’s leading figures, including Rick Owens, Pieter Mulier, Jonathan Anderson, Grace Wales Bonner, Christian Lacroix, Kate Moss and Manolo Blahnik.