The Sprint 2007 Couture collections were shown last week, and Style.com, the official website of Vogue and W Magazines, was absolutely in raptures over the collection produced by John Galliano for Christian Dior. "What psychological process did it take to lift John Galliano to the extraordinary place of brilliance he reached—or rather, rediscovered—in his spring couture? "Everything about the Dior collection—inspired, he said, “by Pinkerton’s affair with Cio-Cio San, Madame Butterfly”—reconfirmed his unique talent to evoke beauty, sensitivity, narrative, and emotion in a fashion show. Kimonos, obis, and geisha makeup were Dior-ified, transformed into delicate translations of New Look peplum suits and full-skirted dance dresses." You can practically hear the editor hyperventilating as s/he types. I am glad that she managed to come down off her cloud long enough to mention Dior's "New Look," because the fabrics may be Japanese, but the shapes are pure vintage Dior. For example, the yellow and green ensemble is Spring 2007; the red gown
is from Fall/Winter 1957-1958, but they look like they could be from the same collection. And that's fine with me, at least these dresses look like something that's actually meant to be worn, unlike some of Galliano's recent couture collections, which are pure costume. And I luuuuuuurve vintage Dior. I probably would have hated wearing it, since it doesn't exactly feature comfortable and work friendly shapes. In fact, Coco Chanel once said upholsters them." But dang, it's "Dior doesn't dress women, he elegant.
Elegance in dress isn't valued, or even mentioned, much any more. I assume that's because all the style setters now are young substance abusing celebrities who wouldn't know elegance if it bit them on their oh-so-obviously bare butts. I wish some mature woman (and by mature I mean "35 or old enough to know the difference between a car and a gynecologist's office" would lead the charge to bring back grand style in dress. Of course, I'd still be working at home in my pajamas or jeans, but at least I'd have more pretty things to look at.
Purple and blue dresses from Christian Dior Spring 2007 Couture; black strapless gown Christian Dior Winter 1953; alas, I have no date for the full-skirted cocktail dress.