His foray into the fashion world was gradual, for art had been his true passion. Yet one thing was certain, that being his obsession with dresses and the feminine form.
Christian Dior founded his fashion empire at the age of 42, successfully (and exponentially) growing it for a decade until his untimely death. From 1947 to 1957, Dior changed the face of haute couture with his ‘new look’. His designs were provocative in the face of the war, revolutionising fashion with a strong, closely tailored, feminine and extravagant look (think nipped waists and big shoulders). Women who wore his designs were scorned for their attire, which consisted of an exorbitant amount of fabric in a time of scarcity.
To keep up with demand, the fashions at the house of Dior changed every six months, thus creating the concept of a fashion season.
Dior loved beautiful women. He believed the model alone gave ‘life’ to his dresses. Fascinated with the job of an architect, Dior deemed dresses ‘ephemeral pieces of architecture destined to glorify the proportions of the female body.’
Dior’s legacy as one of the world’s most prolific fashion designers lives on through his fashion house, now controlled and chaired by French businessman Bernard Arnault.
To learn more about the life and times of designer Christian Dior, I recommend viewing 'Christian Dior: The Man Behind the Myth' (French Connection Films, 2005) available for purchase at amazon.com.
- Michelle, Ed xx