Schoolgirl chic meets gothic fantasy
The Hall of Mirrors at the Château de Versailles and Christian Dior have a significant history. Who could forget those magical Dior Secret Garden films shot on the likes of Rihanna in these gleaming Baroque bastions? So choosing this iconic locale (dotted with artworks by the Italian artist Silvia Giambrone) was a fitting tribute to the design house’s heritage by Maria Grazia Chiuri for the label’s AW 21 outing.
As Maria’s gang of insouciant school girls strutted up and down the gilt edged passage, the visuals evoked a fantasy tale which Maria titled, ‘Disturbing Beauty’ taking a dig at the prevalent social media propelled narcissism. She made an emphatic point of not getting trapped into the mirror craze as there was a lot more to one’s identity than a mere reflection. Aren’t we all consumed by our own image?
Making socio-political commentary and triggering debates on topics, which make you think is nothing new in Ms Chiuri’s body of works and in this digital showcase, she mixed masculine and feminine codes of dressing to conjure a closet of a confident dresser ready to take charge in the post pandemic world.
Extrapolating menswear fabrics and recontextualising sporty puffers in Dior’s cannage pattern, she finished off her ensembles with riding hoods and theatrical capes which could have been straight out of Beauty And The Beast. Moreover, MGC dug deep into the French house’s archive recreating roses and apples—derived from the works of Andrée Brossin de Méré in the ’50s.
The lineup gloried thanks to the delectable dichotomy at work. Crisp white statement collared pieces were clashed with broderie anglaise knits or laser-cut leather creating a visual tension of sorts.
The opening array of monochromatic, grey and midnight blue ensembles made way for fiery reds, plaids and soft ombré pieces. Some of the kohl-eyed models sporting either fringes or centre-parted hair were styled with either a hijab-like scarf or Dior’s veiled beret.
The closing heart-shaped red number was a chic finish to this cinematic outing steeped in literature, drama and intrigue. The new Dior woman is no wallflower, but a strong feminine force who has a mind of her own and a strong sense of identity.