When Christian Dior introduced his New Look in 1947, it was not the product of decades in the trenches as a fashion designer. Rather, Dior’s famous postwar collection marked his professional debut.

Which is not to say that the collection was purely a case of beginner’s luck. Dior had been in the Paris fashion world for years, including productive stints as assistants to Robert Piguet and Lucien Lélong. By the time he opened his own couture house in 1946, he was already 41 years old.

Dior called his first collection Corolle, which was French for flower petals. Indeed, compared to the boxy, utilitarian, World War II fashions that had dominated the 1940s, Dior’s collection was a bouquet of bounty, with yards upon yards of fabric lavished on just one dress. The fashion press was smitten, with “Harper’s Bazaar” being the first to call it the New Look.

In fact, there was much that was not new at all about Dior’s breakthrough. Some have detected 1860s French influences, while Dior himself said that the collection reminded him of the clothes his mother had worn to the races when he was a young boy.

Though the fashion press fawned over Dior (“Vogue” covered him obsessively until his death in 1957), many Europeans were shocked by the excessive use of material at a time when fabric was still being rationed. Others resented the ornamentation of women—fellow Parisian Coco Chanel dismissed Dior’s look as the equivalent of dressing women up like armchairs.

Perhaps in deference to his critics, Dior’s subsequent collections were more pared down. For example, his A-line dresses, whose silhouette resembled the letter A, were signatures of the casual, unfussy 1950s.

After Dior’s death, Yves Saint Laurent, who had been a design assistant with the firm, was named chief designer, even though he was only 21. Within two years Marc Bohan had replaced Saint Laurent, and he stayed at that post for 28 years, longer than Dior himself had been at the helm of his own company...

Italian designer Gianfranco Ferre followed Bohan, but the next designer to make his mark on Dior was a Brit, John Galliano, who arrived at Dior in 1996. Many critics believe Galliano has best understood Dior’s unique aesthetic.

About our sources | Got something to add?

▼ Expand to read the full article ▼

Best of the Web (“Hall of Fame”)

MyVintageVogue

MyVintageVogue

The history of 20th-century women’s fashion largely played out in the pages of magazines such as “Harper’s Ba… [read review or visit site]

Fashion Columbia Study Collection

Fashion Columbia Study Collection

The Fashion Columbia Study Collection (FCSC) is the digital home of the Columbia College Chicago’s fashion archiv… [read review or visit site]

1960s Fashion and Textiles

1960s Fashion and Textiles

Put on your go-go boots and check out this wavy, groovy tribute to 1960s fashion and textiles, courtesy of the Vict… [read review or visit site]

Vintage Fashion Guild

Vintage Fashion Guild

While primarily designed to steer buyers to online vintage clothing shops, this blog is chock full of interesting, … [read review or visit site]

Fashion-Era

Fashion-Era

Bursting at the seams with content, this site contains hundreds of pages of fashion and costume history, including … [read review or visit site]



Clubs & Associations

Most watched eBay auctions    

Dior Homme Ss14 Black Wool Super Skinny Trousers Pants 38 W28 Bnwt Unisex RareSilky Christian Dior Satin Nightgown 2x Xxl PlusAuth. Katy Perry Owned And Worn Dior Sample Chiffon Top Mini Dress 8 10 Valentino Gorgeous Shearling CoatDior Homme Ss06 Distressed Light Blue Bleached Denim Jeans 32 £380 Hedi SlimaneChristian Dior~lace Trimmed Camisole~black~lFendi Black White Stunning Coat With Tag$1050.00 New Authentic Christian Dior Purple Pleated Pants Slacks Size 42 Us 10100% Authentic Vintage Christian Dior Blue Oversized Boyfriend Cardigan W Sz. SVintage 1980's Dior Tank Top Halter Summer Abstract Print Size SmallVintage Christian Dior Nightgown Pale Pink Lace Trims Long Fits L Xl Bust 43''Christin Dior Black Wool Blend Trousers Flat Front Size 38fr/6 Usa Straight LegAuth Christian Dior J'adore Dior Tank Top Shirt Pink Classic! Rare! Christian Dior Intimates Red Silk Bralette Bra Front Snap 34b Valentino Gorgeous Black Lamb Skin Patent Leather CoatVintage Christian Dior Camisole And Half Slip! Beautiful Blush Color!Cassie Ventura Christian Dior Blue V Neck Sweater Vest No Size Christian Dior Paris Womens Logo Mini Tank Dress Stretch Cotton 36 6 Red VgucCd By Christian Dior New With Tags Crochet And Sheer Dress Size 38 (m)Christian Dior Bridal Bouquet Full Fasioned Faux Pearl Nylon Stocking 9 1/2 M Very Sexy Classy Christian Dior Beachwear Beige Tank Swimsuit, Size-s/mChristian Dior Boutique Paris France Brown Pinstripe Silk Lined Jacket Blazer 6 Vintage Christian Dior Pale Cream And Lace Slip Lingerie Nightgown Size 38Christian Dior Ladies Top - 42/10 - Khaki Never Worn Christian Dior &10 Corso Como Comme Des Garcons Black Shirt Size38Christian Dior Women's Blazer Size 14Christian Dior Boutique Paris Womans Xl * J'adore Dior * Unbelievably Soft *Vintage.christian Dior Deep Purple 100% Pure Wool Lined Two Piece Suite Size 12Christian Dior Bright Green Button Down Half Sleeve Cotton Jacket, Sz 4 Vintage Christian Dior Black Orchard Floral Vine W Rhinestones Panty Hose LargeVtg Christian Dior Military Blue Wool Coat Size 12 Double Breasted Cd ButtonsGenuine Dior By Galliano Solid Red Wool Pencil Skirt, Above-knee, Us Size 12Auth Cristian Dior Beige Jacket, Size 10***christian Dior Paris Signature Knit Top Pinks #1 Sz 8!!Women's Christian Dior Ivory Short Sleeve Top Nwt Size 8Christian Dior Vintage 2pc Black Rhinestone Jacket & Pencil Skirt Suit Sz 4/62 Pr/pk Christian Dior 100% Nylon "mauve" Size 10-1/2/-11-m Sandalfoot StockingsExciting! Vintage Cream Christian Dior Panties W Lace Size MedAuthentic Christian Dior J'adore Shirt Small Size 4 Made In ItalyChristian Dior Nightgown Style 3380 264Sexy Christian Dior Silky Ivory Camisole Size Large Excellent ConditionChristian Dior Lingerie Ivory Quilted Lace Trim Quarter Sleeve Jacket Sz S Bn798

Recent News: Christian Dior Clothing

Source: Google News

Zoe Kravitz Rocks High-Low Christian Dior Dress To 'Insurgent' New York ...
Fashion & Style, March 27th

On March 16, Zoe Kravitz attended the "Insurgent" New York premiere at the Ziegfeld Theater in New York City wearing an embroidered gunmetal Christian Dior Spring 2014 Couture gown featuring a sculpted, bell-shaped silhouette and cape-like back...Read more

Christian Dior Is A Great Way To Invest In LVMH
Seeking Alpha (registration), March 26th

Christian Dior (OTC:OTC:CHDRF, OTCPK:OTCPK:CHDRY) is a French blue chip, trading at a discounts to its sum of the parts. The company's major holding is its 40.9% share of LVMH (OTCPK:LVMHF) (OTCPK:LVMUY). Dior trades at a large discount to its ...Read more

Dior & I: behind the scenes at the legendary atelier
The Guardian, March 26th

“While researching the film, I found a tiny little grey Christian Dior autobiography, with such an emotional depiction of work as designer, with every step described in such fascinating detail. I would read it at night, after a long day shooting [at...Read more

Runway to Real Life: Shailene Woodley in Ralph Lauren, Rihanna in Christian ...
The Fashion Spot, March 24th

When you're a celebrity, “real life” always holds a twinge of glamour. Or so it would seem from all the film premieres and promotional photos we're inundated with daily. And the actresses, singers and socialites making the rounds don't step out in...Read more

Christian Dior Taps Rihanna as Face of New Campaign
InStyle, March 16th

The “Take a Bow” singer will star in the brand's fourth video in the series, Christian Dior confirmed to WWD, and she joins the ranks of Marion Cotillard and Jennifer Lawrence as a face for the French company. The campaign has been shot by Steven Klein...Read more

Rihanna May Be the First Black Woman to Front Christian Dior
Cosmopolitan.com (blog), March 13th

Rihanna will reportedly replace Charlize Theron as the face of J'Adore by Christian Dior, making her first black woman to ever front for the brand, according to the Daily Star. News of the switch should be taken with a substantial grain of salt: It was...Read more

These Dior Shoes Are Gonna Be EVERYWHERE
Refinery29, March 7th

Fashion reviews are really just gut checks: When you know, you know, and when it's good, it's good. In the case of the Christian Dior fall '15 show that took over the Louvre yesterday, we really knew, and it was really good. What particularly stood out...Read more

Asymmetric Beauty at Dior: Being Off-Center Suddenly Feels So Right
Style.com, March 6th

Side ponytails, mismatched manicures, and eye shadow applied not with brushes but foam applicators—so many of the things that have been deemed wrong in the past felt incredibly right backstage at Dior today. “When I did the look [at the test], I was...Read more