January 30, 2012
Sheer Beauty at Dior
Minus a successor to Galliano, house of Dior puts out a dreamy Spring collection as light as a cloud
By Nancy Staab
Shocking transparency and x-ray fashion is somehow transmuted into something ladylike and demure for house of Dior’s spring couture show.
Transparent, even scandalously see-through fashion and the house of Christian Dior may not seem to go hand-in-hand but that is just the effect proffered in Dior’s spring 2012 couture show in Paris. And the result is more a nod to Dior’s ladylike New Look than anything titillating. John Galliano may be gone from the Dior ateliers, but his disciple of 16 years Bill Gaytten is carrying on quite nicely in both the Galliano and Christian Dior traditions. The silhouettes, hourglass shapes, cinched in waists and Betty Draper coiffed models (who seem to have stepped out of period Rene Grau fashion illustrations) screamed old school, archival Dior. But Gaytten’s play on transparency, he called it “X-ray fashion,” to reveal the inner architecture of couture dressmaking—the seams, hidden corsets, stitching, patterns, embroidery, etc.—are all a playful riff on themes that Galliano had touched on before him. The fact that this peaceful, polished collection of wispy organza and gauze frocks emanates from a turbulent house still seeking its new creative director may be the best argument for keeping Gaytten at the helm now that Marc Jacobs has turned down the coveted post to remain at Louis Vuitton. Whatever the result, Gaytten has turned out a dreamy collection whose focus on transparency serves to underscore Dior’s impeccable craftsmanship.
CLICK BELOW FOR A SLIDESHOW FROM DIOR'S SPRING 2012 RUNWAY, PLUS ARTY BEHIND-THE-SCENES PHOTOS