John Galliano for Christian Dior Couture show, January 25th, 2010
The ultimate “dress up”, the stuff I live for!
Haute Couture = French for “high sewing” or “high dressmaking” refers to the creation of exclusive custom-fitted clothing. It is made to order for a specific customer, and it is usually made from high-quality, expensive fabric and sewn with extreme attention to detail and finish, often using time-consuming, hand-executed techniques.
Many top designer fashion houses, such as Chanel, use the word for some of their special collections. These collections are often not for sale or they are very difficult to purchase.
To earn the right to call itself a couture house and to use the term haute couture in its advertising and any other way, members of the Chambre syndicale de la haute couture must follow these rules:
- Design made-to-order for private clients, with one or more fittings.
- Have a workshop (atelier) in Paris that employs at least fifteen people full-time.
- Each season (i.e., twice a year), present a collection to the Paris press, comprising at least thirty-five runs/exits with outfits for both daytime wear and evening wear. – Wikipedia
“I wanted to be considered a good craftsman,” wrote Christian Dior of his spring 1947 debut collection. “I wanted my dresses to be constructed like buildings, molded to the curves of the female form, stylizing its shape.” – Christian Dior
It’s Couture time in Paris, YAY!!! While I am very sad that Christian Lacroix (the design house caught the recession flu, and died) will not be presenting this year, I am still ecstatic to have the other designers.
I came to the conclusion today that John Galliano’s magnificent gowns are my favorite thing about the Couture shows. The reason I love them so much is because they are so magical, unlike anything I have ever seen.. they remind me of so many different eras, eras I would of loved to have lived in. After years of witnessing this magic, the intrinsic work of the couture shows still amazes me.
When I was five, I knew I wanted to be in the design world, because my favorite thing to do was to play dress up and play with my Barbie’s clothes. By age 7, I was drawing clothing catalogues – one outfit for every month of the year. Fairy tales and royal gowns were a great inspiration to me, and still are, hence why I love ball gowns from any era. Some of these couture shows, along with David Bowie’s fashions and other looks from the 60s and 70s, and costume designers like Milena Canonero and Colleen Atwood, really fuled me to go to fashion design school.
It also fascinates me that these gowns are hand sewn by professional couturiers and take weeks to make. Can you imagine sitting for HOURS a day/weeks hand sewing little tedious seed beads onto a huge gown? Often times multiple woman will work on the same dress, beading and stitching together.
When I was younger, I did not understand why design houses wanted to spend tons of money and time on a hand sewn gown that would just be sent down the runway for less than five minutes, and then put into the archives. The older I grew, the more I appreciated these shows and saw them as the true art form that they are.
Today, an estimated 200 women buy regularly from the Paris couture, where a Chanel suit takes 150 hours to make, requires three fittings, and, with a smattering of embroidery by the fabled Lesage, can edge toward a $100,000 price tag (elaborate evening gowns can soar beyond that figure). A best-selling Chanel suit may be ordered by ten or fifteen clients, though chez Lacroix, for instance, only one model of each evening dress is sold per country. Guiding them in their choices are the vendeuses, or salesladies, who, with their directrice de la couture, coordinate the client’s requirements with the fitter and her seamstresses to make them a reality. This relationship “is a question of trust,” says Dior’s ineffably chic directrice, Catherine Rivière. “You need to know her body,” adds Raffaele Ilardo, Dior’s head tailor. “She knows you know every fault and every quality. It’s like being her doctor!” -Vogue
I can think of a few women who live in LA who collect couture clothing, and by collect I mean not just buying one or two pieces per season
♥This Dior couture show was held at the Dior mansion on the Avenue Montaigne in Paris, France.
♥ Makeup was done by Path Mcgrath (that was a given) and hats by another given, Stephen Jones. Only in my dreams do I ever see such amazing hair and cool makeup. This is why I love couture shows, you would never see detailed crazy hair and makeup like this on a runway in New York. These looks are such a fantasy world for me.
♥”It: models: Karlie Klass, Chanel Iman, Anja Rubik, Iris Strubegger, Kasia Struss, Siri Tollerod (one of my favorites), Vlada Roslyakova, Maryna Linchuk, Heidi Mount, Magdalena Frackowiak, Liu Wen walked the runway.
♥ Front row guests were Pierre Cardin, Dita Von Teese, Kylie Minogue, Peter Marino, Helene de Fougerolles, Maggie Cheung, and Nora Arnezeder.
♥ This show reminded me of Marlene Dietrich, Millicent Rogers, Mae West, Eliza Doolittle from My Fair Lady, Mary Poppins, The Unsinkable Molly Brown, PollyAnna, and the original “The Women”.
This was a different type of Dior couture show for me, because there was obvious sections of the show: day, day + afternoon, night, occasion for a ball gown, etc. The different styles that stuck out to me were, the turn of the century equestrian look, kind of like Mary Poppins or like “I’m going to the stables or going to watch a fox hunt but not participate”, followed by a kind of ‘My Fair Lady’ I’m wealthy and beautiful and must look good on my Sunday best look, then followed by a dramatic screen siren style with lots of satin, and finally the exqusite ball gowns that we all know and love.
Makeup and Hair
Take a bow Mr. Galliano