Seventy Years of Dior

By AB| ET Student

I elbowed my way through hundreds of people to get a closer look inside the display cases. I couldn’t wait to see Christian Dior’s creations. Since I am not wealthy, it is the closest I will probably ever get to haute couture. What I saw took my breath away. There were purses, shoes, and dresses in every color imaginable. It sparkled in the light. I could understand why so many people were at this exhibition — it was the 70th anniversary of the House of Dior’s founding.

Christian Dior was a legendary fashion designer. He started out by selling his own sketches, but eventually was enlisted into the military. In 1942, he began working for couturier Lucien Long. During the war, they dressed the wives of Nazi officers and French collaborators as a way to preserve the fashion industry throughout the conflict. In 1947, he founded the house of Christian Dior at 30 Avenue Montaigne Paris. I have visited this very street. On February 12, 1947, Dior showed his debut collection. The look consisted of a calf-length full skirt, a cinched waistband, and a fuller bust than had been seen since the turn of the century. This was a rebuttal to post-war fabric restrictions. His designs reintroduced femininity and a focus on luxury to the fashion scene. His designs were criticized for their opulence because it went against the grim post-war reality of Europe. However, he helped re-establish Paris as the fashion capital it had once been. Additionally, he was the first couturier to arrange licensed production of his designs. He became the world’s most successful fashion designer, and even after his death in 1952, the House of Dior continues to operate at the forefront of the fashion industry. Royalty and celebrities wear his designs.

Anna's photo

Dresses at the Dior exhibition. | Photo by AB

As I continue to walk through the exhibition, I am amazed at the legacy that Christian Dior has left. It reflects decades of fashion. There were dresses of every imaginable kind. There were Egyptian inspired ones, garden inspired ones, ball gowns, and animal print. However, the brand does not just include dresses. It also includes gloves, coats, hats, and perfume. The pieces were beautiful. It was magical to see all the different styles.

I have always been interested in fashion. I hope to someday start my own fashion blog. For me, this was a dream come true. It was an incredible experience to be able to see this exhibition and celebrate the 70th anniversary of the House of Dior.

Categories: Arts & Culture

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