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Raf Simons‘s much anticipated first couture show for Dior was livestreamed this morning.
But if you missed it, here’s the loudest buzz. Guests included Vogue editor Anna Wintour (naturally) and her new competitor Carine Roitfeld. Wintour has banned her photographers and editors from contributing to Roilfield’s new glossy rag mag called CR, due to launch in September. So naturally, the two fierce fashion forces were not seated anywhere near each other.
Also there were designers Alber Elbaz and be-skirted Marc Jacobs, Dior handbag brand ambassador Marion Cotillard, and Princess Charlene of Monaco. Sharon Stone — the face of Dior’s Capture skin care line — showed up and so did girl-of-the-moment Hunger Games star Jennifer Lawrence.
A private residence in Paris was transformed into a garden with five rooms covered wall-to-wall in brightly colored flowers. The show opened with a black tuxedo jacket paired with slim pants. Simons offered tailored silhouttees, exaggerated peplum dresses and tops, classy coat dresses, and embellished big gowns.
The colors were neutral black, gray, and navy, as well as bold red, soft pink, fuchsia, and bright yellow. We spotted a touch of tie-bye too.
So far there hasn’t been a single negative review of Simon’s first Dior couture show. New York Times style scribe Cathy Horyn said his collection was was “beautiful, modest in its approach to femininity.”
She writes: “At a time when much of high fashion is highly influenced by image, whether iconic photographs from 1950s couture or new manipulated digital images, Mr. Simons’s debut essentially asks people to trust their own eye. His clothes are often so simple that you have to look at them for a while before you see the small gesture or the magisterial way of sleeveless black crepe falls over the body. He gets the most and the best out of couture, and this is just the start.”
Jess Cartner-Morley, fashion critic at The Guardian, couldn’t help but note the erasure of ousted designer John Galliano‘s influence.
“There is a subtext to this New New Look that goes beyond respect for the house’s esteemed founder. In one fell swoop, John Galliano has been all but removed from the Dior history books. By making a visual connection between his era and that of Christian Dior himself, Simons has redrawn the line of succession. The unimpeachable codes of Dior are illustrated for a new generation; the bias-cut dresses and Kabuki styling of Galliano downgraded to a footnote.”
In other words, thumbs up, Raf Simons. Can’t wait to see the RTW.
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Tracee Ellis Ross