The Dior show started off with a bang, literally, with a silhouetted man wielding a gun and in hot pursuit of our damsel in distress, clad in a vampy silver lamé trench coat dress. Never one to shy away from theatrics, Galliano followed up on his lingerie-centric couture show with a 1940s Hollywood Noir theme, inspired by vintage photographs from that era of Lauren Bacall in the front row at Dior showings. The glamorously-coiffed models with blood red pouts seemed to step right off the set of The Big Sleep, or more accurately, caught in states of deshabille in their dressing rooms, backstage. Galliano took the concept of underwear as ready-to-wear further by building retro shelf bras, intricately-paneled corsets, and satin tap pants into everything, from coquettish rompers to babydoll-inspired pleated chiffon cocktail dresses. Glitzy metallics, icy pastels, and splashy florals freshened up the heavily-embellished jewel tones left over from the couture collection. Dior’s signature hourglass silhouette was ever-present — trench-inspired fit-and-flare blouses, an update of the iconic Bar jacket with peplumed pockets, and a jet-beaded corseted negligee-like gown all provided a modern take. Dior has come a long way since the days of Bacall and Bogart, with burlesque dancer Dita Von Teese and pop singer Rihanna now taking their places in the front row. As different as these two celebrities are, each represents the new “new look” of Dior: Dita with her exaggerated pin-up image is a nod to the past, and Rihanna in her angular leather body suits is the face of the future. What the two have in common is that they both use their feminine allure as a defining element, and this collection packed more than enough sex appeal to satisfy them both.
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