Everyone's saying that this collection is good because of the craftsmanship and silhouettes, so I think we can thank the Dior atelier for being skilled dressmakers and we can thank Mr. Dior for the silhouettes. What can we thank Raf for? Aside from the atelier's work, I find this collection lacking all around. I'm not getting the big deal about the details either. What details? To me, it's boring and lacks substance.
I don't need people to tell me the definition of couture or show me the Dior archives. I'm pretty confident in my knowledge of fashion history and I think everyone in this thread can tell for themselves what they like and don't like.
Let's hope later collections are more powerful.
And as lackluster as this collection is, I still find that there was more design and insight, as little as i thought there was, and that replacing Gaytten was the best thing that could've happened since the scandal.
(Part of this post was extracted from the "Haute couture: what does it really mean?" thread.)
After Galliano's high profile fall and the negative reaction to Gaytten's collections, the Dior atelier was likely shaken, suffering from low morale and uncertainty - it badly needed a steadying hand under a new design leadership.
There is a large, populated atelier behind Dior haute couture, staffed by some of the rarest and most experienced hands, who would face dire straits with the fall of the House of Dior.
It is worth understanding how couture pieces are designed and made - constructed or tailored at the atelier de taileur, draped by the atelier de flou, legions of specialists in embroideries, in buttons, beads, haberdashery, etc., custom-fitted by the construction of a toile, how they must be fitted many times, supported by invisible structures made of pieces of stiffened muslin, all hand-sewn and molded to perfection by fitting experts, etc. This process happens even with a simple jacket. Actually, the simpler the jacket, such as these very fitted modern Bar jackets, the more challenging it is to construct the toile for differently shaped and sized clients, with varying waist-hip proportions, to attain the same effect as that worn by the model. It isn't only obvious work such as embroidery that is skill and labour-intensive. The perfect silhouette is a feat. Only an atelier driven to the precipice of "haute" could deliver, so Raf Simons is really doing something for the rehabilitation of the Dior atelier here, which moves me deeply.
This is why since I have known Raf Simons' ethics, work attitude, I know he didn't choose this direction for the simple reason of rehashing the archives. He is bringing the vision further, to modernity, in abstracting the silhouette and leavening the original heavy construction, at the same time, he is deferring deeply to the revered atelier, which was in moral disarray after the tempestuous Galliano departure and the hugely panned collections by Gaytten. This collection is an applause for exquisite atelier work, a bow to the very old and established House, while the designer's own avant-garde and experimental sensibility is visible but takes a back seat.
Raf Simons' approach to venerate the House of Dior for his first HC collection seems extremely considerate and respectful of the atelier and the House, and it is no doubt his intention, even though he might earn scorn from those who expect something dramatic from this collection.
Like Thakoon said, with the highly constructed haute couture, the entire garment supports itself, as if it has its own life. Look at RS's Dior jackets - it will stand on its own even without a wearer. His approach for this first collection lets the House of Dior stand, even without the designer.
the pattern of the fabric and the detail of the dresses are lovely I have to say, we can see the mix of jil sander in this collection, I mean this is his first presentation for the brand so it's overall acceptable. Definitely, I would love to see extravaganza big big dramatic gown in his next HC collection ! that's the main thing of Christian Dior HC, right ! don't you think ?
Perhaps Galliano has been at the helm for too long, it's too easy for people to equate Galliano= Dior.
I think this is a tribute to Mr. Christian Dior's works. Quite nice for a debut.
But it's more than atelier pieces, e.g. the dye piece. Maybe Raf will make the looks more modern next time.