#PFW: Dior AW18 Runway & Bags Report
1 March 2018

#PFW: Dior AW18 Runway & Bags Report

The 1960s second-wave feminist movement was thought to be spearheaded by Betty Friedan and her seminal text, The Feminist Mystique. Another name you’d probably be familiar with, is Gloria Steinem. But way before this, it was actually Simone de Beauvoir, in her work The Second Sex where she discussed the patriarchal society of that time, which consequently, led to the “othering”, or marginalisation of women, as a whole. Sure, thanks to first-wave feminism, women already had the right to vote, but although some were already in the workforce, many were still confined to the domestic sphere, to fulfil their prescribed “traditional” roles as mothers, caregivers, and housewives. Discrimination and male chauvinism was rife and therefore, the causes that these second-wave feminists were fighting for, were the rights to sexuality, reproductive choices, and equal pay; this is why the phrase “the personal is political” characterised this feminist period.

Dior AW18 Showspace Exterior

Dior AW18 Showspace

Fast forward to 2018, and Dior’s Autumn/Winter 2018 show. Given Artistic Director Maria Grazia Chiuri’s commitment to the championing of the feminist cause in her collections since taking over at Dior, it isn’t surprising that she sought inspiration from this particular time. The showspace and floors at the Musee Rodin had about 3000 posters plastered in a collage-like manner, with slogans such as “Women’s Rights are Human Rights” , “un homme sur deux est une femme” (translation: one in two is a woman), and “I Am Woman” (bringing to mind what became one of the feminist theme songs by Helen Reddy that debuted in 1971), along with protest art, actual photos from the 1960s protests, and covers of vintage fashion magazines.

Dior AW18 ShowSpace

But what really sparked off the ideas for this collection was a photograph of young women protesting outside Dior’s flagship store in Paris with placards  that read “Mini Skirts Forever” due to the lack of miniskirts in then Creative Director, Marc Bohan’s collections (see left side of the above image). After all, the 1960s was the era which Diana Vreeland christened the Youthquake”, a revolution in fashion thanks to designers like Mary Quant and Biba who created the miniskirt in the UK, for which Twiggy became a postergirl.

Dior AW18 Patchwork Looks
Dior AW18 Patchwork Strip Looks
Patchwork Strips
Dior AW18 Sheer Looks
Dior AW18 Evening Looks
My Fave 3 looks from the collection!
Dior AW18 Slogan Tees
Feminist Statement Tees
Dior AW18 Kilts
Loving that kilt-y transparency going on!

Chiuri set the tone for the entire collection when the first model emerged with C’est non non non et non! (“It’s a no, no, no, and no!”), and tees with a silhouette of a naked torso, bringing to mind the demands for rights to sexuality and gender equality. Patchworked looks with archival Dior prints followed, in both a strip-like form, as well as the more conventional triangular style of patchworking, both of which, seem to mirror the showspace’s giant collage. But, if you were expecting miniskirts due to the above, there were none to be found. Instead, the rebellious spirit was reflected in leather knee-high boots, and in true Chiuri fashion, the mix of the feminine with the masculine, for example, the pairing of kilts with masculine jackets, and feminine dresses over thigh-high biker-esque boots. And for this collection, she got rid of the berets from last season, and replaced them with newsboy caps, which accompanied all of the looks.

Dior AW18 JaDior Emboidered Bags

Dior AW18 Lady Dior Embroidered Totes

Dior AW18 Camera Bags

Dior AW18 Saddle Bags

Dior AW18 Dior Addict Bags

As for the bags, we see the J’Adior and Lady Dior bags that have patchwork and art embroidered onto them, but the Oblique bags were the ones that dominated the runway. I love the oblique camera style bag with that clever huge brass “D” hardware which doubles as a handle should you decide to do away with the shoulder straps, as well as the CD clasp with that three-dimensional “D” that seems to protrude from the bag. The thing that really caught my attention though, is the return of the Saddle bag! I wish I’d kept mine, but sadly, I no longer have it. For those of you who still have it stashed somewhere in depths of your closets, it’s time to take them out once again! Old, definitely is gold!


If you missed the show live, watch the FULL show via the on-demand video service right here

Runway and showspace images courtesy of Dior
Detail shots via Vogue Runway