For Fall 2021, Maria Grazia Chiuri focused on touch.

Photo: Courtesy of Dior

While showing seasonal collections via short film can open up a whole new avenue of creative expression, there is something to be said for the flattening effect the digital format can have on the clothes themselves. It’s hard to see, say, the nubby depth of a tweed or the floaty quality of a chiffon through the two-dimensional screen.

But as parts of the world start to open again, the possibility of a traditional runway show has returned, and Maria Grazia Chiuri wasted no time taking advantage of the in-person format. Just weeks after presenting Dior’s Cruise 2022 collection in Greece (because fashion is now a relentless, unstoppable machine), Chiuri put forth 75 even newer ideas for the brand with the Fall 2021 haute couture line.

If there’s ever a time to go all-out on fabrication, of course, it’s couture, darling: The whole point of these custom-made offerings is to maximize luxury. Here, that means densely-packed tweeds with leather details, softly-pleated chiffon gowns with structured busts, blouses and skirts exploding with delicate feathers. With most looks rendered in simple black, white and camel color palettes, the handiwork of the couture artisans was able to truly pop (even on the computer screen). Even the backdrop, by artist Eva Jospin, was hand embroidered. Luxury, baby!


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