Dior Made Tiny Haute Couture Gowns for Autumn-Winter 2021


From miniature horses to baby Air Jordans to tiny burritos YouTubers make for their pet hamsters, it is universally known that tiny versions of things are inexplicably cuter than their normal-sized counterparts. (The only exception to this rule is cupcakes, which are not nearly as adorable as full-sized cakes.) Dior took note and delivered its fall-winter couture collection in miniature proportions, proving that big things really do come in small packages.

Paying homage to Théâtre de la Mode, a 1945 traveling fashion exhibition that promoted Parisian couture during World War II, Dior presented a pint-sized collection of daywear sets in dark tweeds, softly pleated Grecian gowns, and modern interpretations of the Dior’s iconic New Look silhouette. Keeping in line with the rules of couture, each look is made entirely by hand by the Parisian house’s atelier, 40 percent smaller than its original size.

As with previous collections, Grazia cited female creatives like Cindy Sherman, Lee Miller, and Dora Maar, while taking inspiration from nature, fantasy, and women as both the artist and muse. “Surrealist images manage to make visible what is in itself invisible,” Chiuri stated in a press release. “I’m interested in mystery and magic, which are also a way of exorcising uncertainty about the future.”

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The “magic” she references is seen most overtly with the video campaign. Accompanying the doll-sized lookbook is a film by Italian filmmaker Matteo Garrone featuring life-sized models. Set against a sci-fi tumblr fantasy world, the models traipse around in haute couture dressed as high-fashion mermaids and wood nymphs.

Dior’s approach to couture this season follows the industry’s new task with reinventing the traditional fashion show in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic. Chanel presented its first-ever digital cruise show while designers like Gucci and Michael Kors are opting out of the fall-winter 2021 season altogether. Dior has yet to announce whether it will be presenting a physical show this October at Paris Fashion Week, but for now you can appreciate their scaled-down contribution to the couture season.

Justine Carreon is the market editor at ELLE.com covering fashion, Dutch ovens, and fashion again.

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