PARIS Fashion Week is back, and the AW18 couture collections are in full swing. Unveiled yesterday afternoon was Christian Dior, where a royalist runway paved the way for an equally royalist collection. Paris’s Musèe Rodin was transformed into a heavenly atelier, adorned with garmented display units, hundreds of mirrors and bright lights. This was the workshop of Versailles, and its proprietors were entering.

Since arriving at Dior back in 2016, Maria Grazia Chiuri has fashioned a total modern fantasy of the acclaimed French house. There’s an overarching sense of enchantment in her designs – both honourable to the traditional codes and fresh with innovation. Yesterday’s take? For AW18 couture – her fourth collection of the kind – regal dresses and suits dominated. Constructed styles spanned from fitted sans corsets to countless flowing pleats.

Reigning, you ask? Of course – take the pristine colour scheme. Chiuri opted for her powerful female parade to be clad in neutral tones – nude, navy, and blush pinks dominated. They accommodated powerful proclamations of the modern woman, donning herself in crepe gowns finished with embroidery of the ribboned and beaded kind. Of course, the classic Dior references were apparent, too. Bar jackets surfaced throughout, often finished in a beaming metallic gold. All in all? A royal ceremony.

And so surfaced the Dior empress. Her presence was felt everywhere, whether that be through models, attendees, women of the atelier, or Grazia Chiuri herself. Craftsmanship was clear, but according to Chiuri’s royalist thread, it was to be communicated through clean, well-cut couture that proclaimed regal chicness. Empowerment? Most definitely – if there’s one reason to crown Chiuri, it’s for her beautiful blend of tradition and modernity. Oh – and her fantasies that never fade.

With the V&A museum consecutively announcing Christian Dior: Couturier du Reve – set to open in 2019 – the discovery of the Dior tale is soon set to take over London. Thanks to Chiuri and her continual revival of both elegance and empowerment, the house is currently on top reigning form. Its unlikely to be stepping down any time soon, so take a seat and enjoy the view. Cheers to couture!

by Faye Fearon

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