Saturday, 3 March 2012

Paris Fashion Week: 'A Lesson on Confusion' by Dior

When John Galliano left Dior last year, there was a great deal of speculation about the future success of the brand. Some claimed that Galliano was not the cornerstone of Dior whilst others remained incredulous as to what would become of the French fashion powerhouse. Personally, I was one of the sceptics. Though what he did was shameful and entirely inappropriate, there is no denying that John Galliano is a fashion genius; without him at the helm, Dior's collections have thus far fallen short of the creative mark that we had come to expect. Bring that to the present day and Bill Gaytten's Fall/Winter 2012 collection for Dior was really quite uninspiring.

The balletic influence is strikingly obvious whilst midi-length pleated skirts with cinched waists evoke nostalgic images of Dior's infamous 'New Look'. However, the collection felt too safe for my liking. Bold colours and creative designs have been replaced by a predictable colour palette of black, pink and grey. As a whole, the collection is confused; with a theme surrounding the notion of 'soft modernity', Gaytten stuck to familiar silhouettes which in my eyes, translates as boring.

However, that isn't to say there were some really nice pieces. I can't bring myself to use a more enthusiastic adjective so 'nice' will have to suffice. The latter end of the collection presented some interesting pieces that you can see working well in both editorials and on the red-carpet. My favourite item is definitely the horizontal striped maxi-skirt with sheer panels - it's got Tilda Swinton written all over it, no?

I don't want to be critical of Bill Gaytten because he has an enormous pair of shoes to fill; away from the Dior label, this collection would probably be fantastic. However, when the bar has been set so high by such an ingenious predecessor, it's hard not to make the comparison. This is a collection that demonstrates great skill and knowledge, though Dior now needs to reignite its spark and enthusiasm for passion - without Galliano.

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