INSPIRATION: The Elegance of Christian Dior

Today’s inspiration post is all about the gorgeous and elegant design of Christian Dior.

“Christian Dior (21 January 1905 – 23 October 1957) was a French fashion designer, best known as the founder of one of the world’s top fashion houses, also called Christian Dior.

On 16 December 1946 Dior founded his fashion house, backed by Marcel Boussac, a cotton-fabric magnate. The actual name of the line of his first collection, presented in early 1947, was Corolle (literally the botanical term corolla or circlet of flower petals in English), but the phrase New Look was coined for it by Carmel Snow, the editor-in-chief of Harper’s Bazaar. Dior’s designs were more voluptuous than the boxy, fabric-conserving shapes of the recent World War II styles, influenced by the rations on fabric. He was a master at creating shapes and silhouettes; Dior is quoted as saying “I have designed flower women.” His look employed fabrics lined predominantly with percale, boned, bustier-style bodices, hip padding, wasp-waisted corsets and petticoats that made his dresses flare out from the waist, giving his models a very curvaceous form.

Initially, women protested because his designs covered up their legs, which they had been unused to because of the previous limitations on fabric. There was also some backlash to Dior’s designs due to the amount of fabrics used in a single dress or suit. During one photo shoot in a Paris market, the models were attacked by female vendors over this profligacy, but opposition ceased as the wartime shortages ended. The “New Look” (a name given it by American fashion-magazine editor Carmel Snow) revolutionized women’s dress and reestablished Paris as the center of the fashion world after World War II.”



Source: wikipedia.org

Some of Dior’s sketches

Dior’s “New Look”, 1947

“Junon” dress, fall/winter 1949-50

“Eventail” dress, Fall-Winter 1956-57

From Christian Dior’s autumn/winter haute couture 2011 show

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“Zest is the secret of all beauty. There is no beauty that is attractive without zest.”

– Christian Dior


Do you have a favourite design by Christian Dior? Who’s your favourite fashion designer or fashion house?

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Posted by Alison Harmsworth

Alison Harmsworth is a set designer based in Toronto. Her credits include 'Schitt's Creek', 'Good Witch', 'A Christmas Horror Story', 'Remedy', and 'Spun Out'.

  1. I like the elegance and charm of Christian Dior, I’m a fun of it. Nice pictures.

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