As usual, it’s the sole that tells the story.
First things first: yes, that was a real-life pair of co-branded Birkenstock mules walking down the Dior runway in Paris today. But it was a post-show Instagram post that really got the people going. Following the house’s fall-winter 2022 collection, Dior Men’s senior shoe designer Thibo Denis shared a closer look on Instagram, starting with a shot of the telltale embossed soles, printed with the Dior Oblique motif fading into Birkenstock’s bone-patterned tread.
They’re a take on Birkenstock’s Tokio mule, in five Dior-ified neutral shades (including one embroidered floral) in suede and heathered felt. They’ve got rubbery toe reinforcements (how gorp-y!) and a cross-foot strap set with what you can bet is a tiny, Matthew Williams-designed rollercoaster buckle.
Birkenstock is hardly new to the high-fashion game—they’ve partnered with Rick Owens, Proenza Schouler, and Jil Sander as of late—but that isn’t to say Birk’s so-called Jesus sandal silhouette hasn’t been referenced one or one thousand times. It’s something that creative director Kim Jones, ever keen on collaboration, seemed aware of from the jump: “We’ve done a Birkenstock, but only because we didn’t want to do a Christian Dior gardening shoe and copy it,” the designer said during a preview ahead of the show. So why not make the real thing? Keep an eye out for these in stores, on Instagram, and just about everywhere celebrity feet tread later this year.