The figure of Christian Dior looms large on the fashion landscape, so important were his contributions to the field during his short reign as “King of Couture”. As a result, his successors work diligently to build upon the strong foundation he left while simultaneously leaving their own stamp on the Dior archive. For that reason, Maria Grazia Chiuri has approached the labyrinthine maze between her new epoch as the brand’s first female designer and the days of Christian Dior with a desire to root out a connection to the past and a way forward for the future.
The labyrinth, as Chiuri relays it, was paved with Dior signatures: flowers, plants, allegorical images, and Zodiac and tarot symbols. Her enchanting and ethereal couture collection for Spring/Summer 2017 contained all of those special codes, with an eye toward transforming women from mere mortals into creatures of divinity. Look 22, in particular, bore all the hallmarks of a classic Dior creation, from its flattering silhouette to its extravagant skirt painstakingly attended to by the Ollier atelier to ensure its storytelling magic.
The resplendent skirt started first as a detailed sketch inspired by the fantasy worlds spun by Salvador Dalí before it was brought to life with hand-stitched embroidery. In the video below, you can witness the extraordinary efforts that go into the making of a single couture look and leave with the same impression as Chiuri: “[It’s] really a piece of art.”