Fashion & Beauty / Collections Digest

A Dream of Dior with Victoire de Castellane

Victoire de Castellane illustrates the dream that inspired the new Dior Fine Jewellery collection, featuring M Christian Dior himself

Born in 1905 in the seaside town of Granville, Christian Dior's devotion to both fashion and illustration started early – in fact, he used to sell sketches of fashion designs outside his family home to raise pocket money. After he finished school, he opened an art gallery with a friend that sold artists like Picasso, before the Great Depression hit and forced it to close. It was then that he started to work for fashion designer Robert Piguet and, after a stint of military service during WWII, he returned to Paris to work for couturier Lucien Lelong alongside Pierre Balmain.

In 1946, the deeply superstitious Dior found a mysterious star on the ground and saw it as a sign of his destiny, that he needed to found his own couture house. And so, inspired by this apparently sacred symbol, on December 16, 1946 at 30 Avenue Montaigne, Paris, he did just that. His first collection was groundbreaking, featuring an opulence that had been missing through the austere war years and a voluptuous silhouette that was famously dubbed the New Look by Harper's Bazaar. Yet, Dior actually named this first collection Corolle – the French botanical term for flower petals – stating that "I have designed flower women." Right from the outset, his eponymous house was imbued with a clear devotion to florals.

This love of flowers was sparked by a childhood spent tending to a rose garden in his family villa (wonderfully, actually named 'Les Rhumbs' or 'Wind Rose'), and is something that has deeply inspired the Rose des Vents collection. Designed by Victoire de Castellane, the creative director of Dior Fine Jewellery, the new range of bracelets and necklaces unites Dior's passions for the flower with his superstitious devotion to the star motif and results in a delicate yet striking assortment of pieces deeply rooted in his original aesthetic. 

"The whole history of the house is there, implicitly" explains Castellane, who created the collection after dreaming that she and Christian Dior actually met. Here we exclusively present an animation of her dream alongside her own illustrations of the experience, documenting everything from her visiting his beloved Granville to him supersitiously reading her cards. It is a wonderfully whimsical series of insights into not only the collection but also M Dior's biography and interests, and enough to make us wish that our dreams were of Dior, too.

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