The New Dior Takes a Feminist Turn

Dior by Maria Grazia Chiuri.
Maria Grazia Chiuri makes her debut.

Since Raf Simons' abrupt departure from Dior last year, the power vacuum of high fashion proportions has left everybody and their stylish aunt's dog wondering how the brand will put itself back together moving forward.  After 5 collections helmed by the brand's in-house design team, the top seat has finally been handed off to Maria Grazia Chiuri, formerly the one of two Creative Directors at Valentino.  Today marked the first show for Chiuri at Dior as well as the first time that we've seen a woman at the helm of the brand in its 70 year history.

So far, we're seeing mixed reviews of this debut collection.  It is definitely more of a departure from the Dior vocabulary established under Raf Simons, and it definitely felt very reminiscent of her signature themes from Valentino - beading, florals, lace, heart stitching, bustiers, tulle, and A-line gowns all felt a little bit too familiar, even down to the braided ballet buns and minimal makeup worn by the models.  That being said, many of these motifs also represented a return to the traditional elegance that Dior has always represented, something that had been somewhat subverted by a more athletic modernism during Simons' period.

What stood out the most however, has to be the newfound feeling of girl power that has coincided with Chiuri's ascent in the high fashion sphere.  Sending a t-shirt down the runway emblazoned with the title of Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie's iconic book, "We Should All Be Feminists," Chirui sent the message that it's about damn time the fashion industry elevate female voices to positions of power.  In an industry that has struggled between operation by masculine capitalist control and the rule-breaking attitudes of female tycoons like Coco Chanel and Miuccia Prada, it is refreshing to see the ladder working its way back into the frame of modern mainstream fashion once again.

Image via @dior

Read more: Catching up on fashion week? Try our recap of London Fashion Week highlights, then read up on our favourite collections from New York, including Rodarte and Alexander Wang.

Tia Elisabeth Glista is the founding Editor in Chief of Couturesque Magazine.  She is also a textbook Taurus (ambitious, aesthetically-driven, very stubborn) who can at any given time be found listening to BANKS and looking at pictures of puppies.  Click here to follow her on Instagram. 

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I founded Couturesque Magazine when I was 15 years old because like many of my peers, I felt ignored and talked down to by all of the other teen fashion publications out there. I figured that at the end of the day, the people who knew the most about my generation, were the people who belonged to it. The fashion industry is becoming increasingly dependent on the creativity of younger voices who challenge the status quo and make us rethink what we wear and why we wear it. And that is exactly what Couturesque set out to celebrate - authenticity, intelligence, originality, and diversity... in other words, what makes Gen-Z tick. Fast-forward to 2016 and we now have a staff of more than a dozen fashion distruptors contributing to our daily content from all around the globe, 100K+ readers following us from Toronto to New York, to London, Copenhagen, Berlin, Tokyo, and Tel Aviv, and a plethora of big-wig industry fans and collaborators. But what matters to us the most is the responsibility that our publication has to make a positive impact in the lives of those who come across it - we stand against retouching our photoshoots and we stand for sharing the beautiful, individual, complex voices of everyone, especially those who feel marginalized by mainstream fashion media. We hope that you love our site as much as we do and that you take the time to follow us (Facebook / Twitter / Instagram / Pinterest / Tumblr / Snapchat / YouTube) throughout our journey to make fashion accessible to the powerful young adults of today.

Tia Elisabeth Glista
Editor in Chief