Kim Jones Designed Sneakers for Hennessy—Even Though He Doesn’t Drink

Likelihood is, Kim Jones made your favorite sneakers—or not less than, they might be your favorite, in the event that they hadn’t sold out in five seconds. He’s the artistic director at Dior Men and the brains behind the “Air Dior” Nikes that literally broke the brand’s website, plus collabs with Converse, those coveted skate slip-ons at Louis Vuitton, and that monogram pair with Supreme that’s only available in limited stock on The RealReal. (Should you’re more into heels, don’t panic. Mr. Jones can be accountable for Fendi’s womenswear collection, where these stratospheric boots are currently going fast.)

Now, in an unlikely partnership, Jones is joining forces with Hennessy, the distinguished French cognac brand that’s technically older than America. (It was founded in 1765, but alas, was never name-checked in Hamilton.) The principal caveat? Although Hennessy X.O is an exquisite pour, Kim Jones doesn’t drink. Ever. “I’m really allergic!” he laughs after I ask him if he did any sip-and-sketch rounds for his sneaker designs. “I desired to try it because I desired to see why everyone was so obsessed by it, but , it just doesn’t agree with me.” As an alternative, Jones used the classic brandy’s wealthy brown color story. “And since drinking Hennessy X.O is an element of each formal and casual gatherings, it was really essential for [the sneakers] to suit into any wardrobe otherwise.” Jones also created a decanter and bottle for the cognac, which is—surprise—owned by the identical parent company as Dior itself.

Hennessy X.O sneakers, designed by Kim Jones.

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When most individuals buy a bottle of Hennessy, they probably drink it (or not less than gift it to someone special). But after they enterprise to purchase a coveted Kim Jones sneaker, they may try to flip it for double the worth as an alternative. Is Jones cool with that? “I’ve seen lots of my friends’ kids do this, actually! I feel a few of them have made a great deal of money,” he laughs. “But then they take that cash and buy more sneakers, or other clothes they actually need. To be honest, at that age, I didn’t have that form of ingenuity. So those guys? My hat’s off to them.”


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Paradoxically, as an alternative of flipping streetwear in his youth, the 49-year-old designer served drinks “at an opera house bar” as an alternative. “I needed to work to get through college, didn’t I?” he asks. “But it surely was amazing, actually. You met opera singers, you met people who design sets, you met aristocracy, you met all sorts…but I did notice the individuals who ordered Hennessy all the time had very nice suits, watches, jewelry…I can’t say I didn’t consider them after I was creating these pieces.” Someday at work, Jones served the Queen Mother. Twenty years later, he was appointed an Officer of the British Empire by Queen Elizabeth II.

model on the runway at fendi fall 2023 ready to wear runway show on february 22, 2023 at fendis showroom in milan, italy photo by swan galletwwd via getty images

A model at Fendi’s fall/winter 2023 show.

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As a failed multitasker, I ask Jones how he keeps up along with his two big day jobs—at two big-name fashion houses—together with various collabs (Tiffany & Co., Marc Jacobs, and BTS, to call a number of), plus the traditional stuff like eating, sleeping, and hanging out with Kate Moss. “Oh, I can show you how to there,” he starts, before adding, “you only must be incredibly organized.” Seriously? That’s it?

“And, okay, it is advisable to be certain of what you’re setting out to attain. Where we start on the [Fendi] collection or where we start at [Dior], we all know we’re headed to an end product. And that end product is admittedly how I’ve been imagining it to look all along. That goal never changes.” But Jones cautions that his singular focus can’t occur alone. “Once you’re working with a team that’s already been at a brand for some time, you have got to show people what you would like,” he says. “It takes time to work with an entity and a team of individuals. Trust, and time. And you have got to be straightforward with people about that upfront. There’s nothing fallacious with saying, ‘This shall be labor, and we are able to’t rush through it.’ All the things good takes time.” Including Hennessy’s recent cognac, which takes a median of 45 years to mature.

kim jones hennessy

Gwendoline Christie, Precious Lee, and Christina Ricci attend Dior Men fashion shows.

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Could abstaining from drinking be the key to Jones’ youthful glow? Even via Zoom, it looks like his complexion is powered by a hoop light. Perhaps a skincare collaboration is in his future? “I’ve been approached by many of the big beauty makers,” he admits. We’ll cheers to that, even when Jones won’t.

Headshot of Faran Krentcil

Editor at Large,

“Her beauty and her brain go not together.” —William Shakespeare

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