(CBS/AP) It is on everyone's mind
at Paris Fashion Week: Who will replace star designer John Galliano at Dior?
Fashion critics, editors and stylist are making their predictions after the French fashion house firedGalliano, its creative director, over a video that surfaced online that showed him declaring his love for Adolf Hitler.
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Some are speculating that Givenchy designer Riccardo Tisci could take the top designing spot.
Tisci, whose dark, S&M-steeped creations for Givenchy have won him a rabidly devoted fan base, has a similar background as Galliano. The two both graduated from the Central Sain Martins College of Art and Design in London and later went on to work their way up Givenchy's ready-to-wear and haute couture division.
though, note that Tisci has done little to boost sales at Givenchy, which is also owned by Dior parent company LVMH Moet Hennessy, and suggest that Dior, as the group's leading moneymaker, might be looking for someone with a more proven sales record.
Alber Elbaz would fit that profile.
The Moroccan-born Israeli successfully restored Lanvin from a musty old Paris label to one of fashion's hottest properties. After his stint at Yves Saint Laurent, Elbaz joined Lanvin in 2001 and delivered feminine and timeless designs that are highly regarded in the industry. His cuddly and bow-tie-wearing image might also be a breath of fresh air for Dior, especially after this scandal-filled week.
"In a perfect world, it would be Alber" tapped to replace Galliano, said Dana Thomas, a veteran fashion critic and author of "Deluxe: How Luxury Lost its Luster."
"But I suspect he's not interested," she said. "It will be a hard search, a hard shoe to fit."
Other names listed as potential candidates include Oliver Theyskens, who's been working for New York-based commercial house Theory after being dismissed from Nina Ricci, and YSL's Italian-born designer Stefano Pilati.
Many fashion insiders suspect Dior has already made a decision on a successor.
"These are not the kind of decisions that happen overnight," said Maria Louisa Poumaillou, who owns a cutting-edge Paris boutique. "They've certainly had a contingency plan for a long time. The stakes are simply too high not to."