A smooth white plaster cave reminiscent of a Dubuffet sculpture set the stage for Christian Dior’s white-centric Spring/Summer 2014 Couture collection, where creative director Raf Simons flirted with futurism, evoking the trapeze silhouette of the 1960s, while folding in his own modernist spin.
The opening series of springy shifts in geometric perforations and diagonal tiers of pleated silk willed in the summer, punctuated with a couple of fresh navy broderie anglaise bar suits. Sliding into sportif territory, gowns honed from holey techy-looking fabrics, including a long white body-con number with a lipstick-red underlayer peeking through, came accessorized with couture sneakers, presenting the chic but cool way young ladies such as Dior ambassador Jennifer Lawrence want to dress today.
Other effortless standouts included a waffled skin-tone dress with a discreet fold at the front ending in a split. “I was thinking about taking the theatrical out and taking it more into reality,” Simons told WWD during a preview of the collection. “As a designer, you have a responsibility to do both — to trigger her fantasy with the show, but give her the reality as well.” Adding texture, repetitive motifs were half cut out and peeled back to give a 3D effect.
Some of the show's more experimental looks, such as dresses tacked with extra skirts that added bulk at the hips, looked a little clunky, with that old adage “less is more” ringing true here. But overall, in a season of white, lightness and modernity, Simons hit the nail on the head, as couture inches into a new era.
-- Katya Foreman