Fashion Week

Dior Spring 2019 Couture Show is Inspired by Parisian Circus

Dior Spring 2019 couture show takes its inspiration from circus, which is beautiful, but do we love the looks? Discover the best looks from the haute couture SS19 collection and read our review!

Review | Collection

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For Dior’s Creative Director, Maria Grazia Chiuri, the performing arts continue to inspire fashion design. After a ready-to-wear show themed around dance, the Dior Spring 2019 couture show is inspired by the circus. Cirque d’Hiver, to be precise, which is a prominent Parisian circus, and if my travel knowledge is right, the French equivalent of Cirque du Soleil.

Either way, Christian Dior loved going to Cirque d’Hiver, and circus even inspired one of Dior’s collections designed by John Galliano. Long story short, the Dior Spring 2019 couture show and collection take inspiration from clown costumes, lion tamers, acrobats and even the whole ambiance of the circus backstage.

With circus performers doing their gig in the background, models strutted the runway in glitter shorts over embellished catsuits, dresses with clown-inspired ruffs and circle-diamond motifs. There was a white clown inspired gown and a look with ruffled cape. Dusty shades like powdery nude, smoke, dove, blush and pearly carbon made up the palette, inspired by the “fine dust that sprinkles stage clothes.”

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As far as the fashion show is concerned, it’s one to remember. Perhaps students in fashion schools would talk about it in years to come, while discussing how fashion show themes are designed. But fashion is not about the parade at the end of the day. It’s about the clothes.

Some of the looks are gorgeous indeed. Perhaps not breathtaking, but I could definitely imagine them on red carpets, styled to suit the taste of the celebrities (or rather, their stylists).

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However, some of the looks are unwearable, if you look at the complete ensembles. But is couture even supposed to be wearable? In this day and age? Well, yes and no. In the Instagram era, everything needs to be OTT – over the top – to grab as many eyeballs as possible, and ipso facto, as many “likes”. At the same time, the age of the modern, working woman, calls for practicality, too.

So even if I could visualize some of the looks on celebs on red carpets, I couldn’t see most of them being worn by the real women in real parties and galas. Glittery booties, sequined catsuit and clown patterns are good examples.

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We do, however, see interesting themes and trends that could form the inspiration for 2019’s fashion styles. Flats worn with couture are the first example. Who says couture has to be worn with heels only? The exaggerated hiplines in some of the skirts, or the “new look” waistline is a great throwback to the history of the house of Dior. So I’m loving that comeback.

Other than that, the tattooed leotard and pleated ruffles are gorgeous and I can see them becoming trends even in street wear.

Maria Grazia even makes this about inclusion, as all her collections thus far have had feminism as a part of their themes. A clown, says the fashion show description, is not male or female. The circus performers are androgynous and asexual, where we concentrate on their art and not on their beauty or gender. Yet, I’m afraid I don’t see my husband wearing one of these dresses anytime soon. And I’m thankful for that. Because modern fashion doesn’t have to just be androgynous. Because there’s no feminism without embracing femininity.

Dior Spring 2019 Couture Collection: Gallery

Image Credits: Estelle Hanania for Dior

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