Christian Dior

Christian Dior Haute Couture F/W 11
Paris: Having recently been appointed designer for the John Galliano label, Bill Gaytten, who had been Galliano’s right-hand man, stepped up to the big leagues to design for Christian Dior Haute Couture, with help from the studio’s first assistant, Susanna Venegas. The designer for the house of Dior has not yet been named, and some considered this a test run for Gaytten. He refrained from playing it safe, channeling the exuberance of his predecessor, but unfortunately he lacked Galliano’s finesse and ability to realize fantasy. The construction also lacked Galliano’s precision, with ruffled tops and skirts often coming off messy and disheveled. The Memphis movement from the 1980s was a key reference, which connected to the kitschy graphics, neon brights and poofy silhouettes that Gaytten sent down the runway, but column dresses and glittery one-shoulder frocks seemed to have been inspired by Studio 54’s 70s heyday. The overwhelmingly negative response to the collection insures the search for Galliano’s successor at Christian Dior is most likely still on, and followers of the label will have to wait on pins and needles for the big unveiling during the spring collections. –Joanna Manganaro

Color: Turquoise / Bright yellow / Hot pink and pastel pink / Beige / Burnt orange / Jade green / Shades of brown / White / Black

Key Items: Classic Bar jackets / Puffy skirts / 70s-inspired maxi dresses

Materials: Gazar / Organza / Taffeta / Chiffon / Silk charmeuse / Firm suitings

Print + Pattern: Memphis movement-inspired motifs – bricks, zebra, geometric shapes / Zig-zags / Overlapping squares / Wood grain

Details + Trim: Dense fabric layering / Metallic appliqués / Feathers / Sequins and plastic paillettes / Color Blocking / Fabric flowers and swirls

Accessories + Footwear: Geometric headpieces / 80s-inspired earrings / Chunky necklaces / Strappy sandals

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