I'm pregnant enough to make getting out of a car a three point manoeuvre so decided not to go to Paris for the Haute Couture shows this time (the most sensible I have been in my life). And so, following in the footsteps of colleagues who have walked this way before me, I'm watching the latest fashion proceedings in Paris from the comfort of my swivel chair and a window on the world through my Mac. The view is, in fact, rather brilliant proving almost as insightful as actually being there.
The Dior live stream for Raf Simon's debut show – OMG!! Cue Raf mania etc. - for the house was in full working order - we watched it on Dior.com complete with the actual show music, Windowlicker by Aphex Twin, pumping through (with Elle.fr and Dior's Facebook page as back-ups).
Witnessing the build up to the show on Twitter/Instagram was bordering on hysterical – one editor wrote, “So excited its like Christmas day when you are five years old.” When you think that basically, said editor (and indeed all of us to an extent) is excited about clothing designed for the newly minted society ladies from BRIC nations, created by a rave music loving Belgian modernist, for France’s most storied and bourgeois fashion house, in the midst of a first world recession, it seems smart to remain clear-eyed in the eye of fashion beauty. Especially when considering the fate of the previous Dior creative director John Galliano who infamously unravelled under the pressure of his role. Being caught up in fashion raptures seems somehow inappropriate to me now, but it's hard when confronted with the most perfect outfit I've ever seen (below).
(via @franburnslondon) My favourite
So, I’m going to try to be clear eyed. The heart and the head are saying two different
things… While this did feel like the most anticipated fashion debut in my living
memory, and the flower filled venue and clothes were incredibly beautiful, the show and
collection itself was exactly what I expected - even down to the slim-leg trousers topped
with modern ballgown tops that were a lyrical rendition of the so-called “mullet” dresses
most young London women are wearing - nothing more. I'm not sure if that is a bad thing
or a good thing. Probably good.
It was certainly clear by look two that Raf Simons knew he had the Dior job back in February
when he presented his final collection for Jil Sander, so similar was the look and feel of the
clothes. In fact maybe his last Jil Sander show was actually his first unofficial Christian Dior
show – even the hair and make-up was the same.
In a nutshell this felt like a spot-on continuation and evolution to the Raf Simons body of
work, while it also respected the elegant codes of the Dior DNA. My gut feeling is, let's
wait and see what he does for his Dior ready-to-wear – I sense he will be redefining and
modernising the end-use customer in Dior's off-the-peg collection far more intensively
that he can with a Haute Couture show. A society lady is what she is, after all, and she
will be hammering down the door of the Dior atelier on Rue Francois Premier....right
THE FIVE TWEETS WHICH SUMMED IT UP FOR ME:
Nerdishly overexcited for today's Raf Simons debut, I have arrived 20 mins early at Dior. Doors not even open.Katie Shillingford
That was so exciting my legs have turned to jelly...wow. Beautiful!
The Dior show just ended. In the last 13 minutes, Raf Simons just single-handedly altered the contemporary haute couture landscape. Bravo!Alexander Fury
I'm hardly understated myself, but if I read one more Vreeland-level overreaction to the shenanigans in Paris... Wipe your seats, peeps.
Is it THE rapturous and monumental start to Raf's career at Dior we all expected though? I'm not sure....
WHO WAS THERE?
|Natalia Vodianova (via @lauracraik)|
Anna dello Russo (via @lauracraik)