ChildhoodBorn in 1905 with Granville (Handle) in the middle of a family of inventive advised industrialists of the very known mark of detergent “Saint-Marc”, Christian Dior grows in an environment very Beautiful-Time . Apparently, it is immediately attracted by the music, the drawing and the clothes industry of disguises. An anecdote tells that in 1919, at the time of a village fair in Normandy, a palmist predicts to him that “ the women will be beneficial for you, and it is by them that you will make a success of ”.
The shortly after the First World War, it joined Paris where it binds friendship with some artists of the Mad years, and in particular with the poet max Jacob and Jean Cocteau. His/her mother wants that it follows a diplomatic career, and Christian Dior is registered with the Ecole of Political sciences, that it leaves in 1926 without the least diploma.
Professional beginningsIt then opens an art gallery in which it exposes fabrics of Picasso, Matisse or Dali. But the crisis of the Années 1930 puts an end to this adventure. In 1931, his/her mother dies and his/her father, victim of bad speculations, is ruined. The villa of Granville, transformed today into museum, is sold with the municipality. And it must give up its art gallery due to tuberculosis.
During 10 years of crossing of the desert, Christian Dior saw generosity of her friends and sale of some tables. It sells its first sketches of Chapeau X and dress S after its return of the military service, in 1935, then is engaged as illustrator by the Illustrated Figaro .
But supported by some friends artists, it creates, as at the time of its childhood, of the costumes for the Cinéma and the Théâtre, and this with much of taste and talent. It also makes the seat of the large houses of the time, and manages to sell some of its sketches with Nina Ricci, Balenciaga or Claude Saint-Cyr military school. Apparently, it would have succeeded in approaching Elsa Schiaparelli, installed since 1935 with the 21, Place Vendôme.
In 1938, it is engaged by Switzerland Robert Piguet as a Modéliste and signs of entry three collections. The tailor in black and white hound's-tooth cloth is its first best-seller. One starts to speak about him when the Second world war bursts. He then spends a year under the flags, then, demobilized, he joined his father and his younger sister in the south of France.
Beginnings in the haute coutureHe returns to Paris only in 1941, and enters to Lucien Lelong, one of the largest designers houses Parisian.
Four years later, it becomes acquainted with Marcel Boussac, the king of the Coton , which believes immediately in its talent. Superstitious, Dior, always according to the legend, turns to a fortune-teller, who exclaims “ Acceptez then, accept. You must create the Christian Dior house. Whatever the starting conditions. ”. Boussac invests 60 million francs and all grants to him: a house with its name, the 30, Which occurred Montaigne. It launches out thus in the mode and of the Haute couture. Marcel Boussac, prince of the fabric , had chosen its foal well: of three meters to be a dress before, one needs 20 suddenly of them to make a Christian Dior dress.
In February 1947, Christian Dior literally ignites the fashion of post-war period with its first procession, fruit of an intense work of collaboration with its team, whose Pierre Cardin is the first tailor. It is the birth of a new woman, of a design radically avant-gardist: size curved, high and round chest, narrow shoulder S, Leg S discovered up to 30 cm above the ground.
SuccessDior is particularly known for the style “New Look” in 1947. The expression “New Look” is the work of Carmel Snow, editor association of the Harper' S Bazaar, which by seeing the new models of Dior exclaimed: ( Dear Christian, your dresses have a so new style! ) The immediate shortly after the Occupation, Christian Dior returns to the seam her share of dream, and puts the woman at the center of all the attentions. It gives again the taste to them to like, to suggest the desire. The concepts and the imageries related to the Luxe reconsider the front of the scene after one long period of insecurity, terror and anguish.
He does not hesitate démoder itself to surprise, in particular with his line “ French bean ” where he erases the volutes of the preceding collections. In the Years 1950, it releases the size of the women with Ligne H .
On the councils of a friend of childhood, it launches, at the same time as its designers house and its first collection, a company of Parfum. The first fragrance is called Miss Dior . For him, the perfume is the essential complement of the female personality, it is the final key of a dress.
Visionary, it leaves for the the United States to the conquest this market in full boom as of 1948, that is to say less than one year after the launching of his first collection. He founds a policy activates diffusion of his name and grant of license. With the invaluable assistance of Jacques Wheel, his finance manager soon president of the company, it poses the foundations of a true empire. He institutionalizes the frankness and the deposit from mark by renting his name to scratch articles manufactured approximately by industrialists who transfer Royalties to him. He opens offices of public relations throughout the world, organizes processions with the planetary scales, he puts the radios in the blow, etc He is the dressmaker of the stars. In 1957, its house ensures more half of exports of the French seam, and Time Magazine devotes it to its One.
In eleven years, its activity extends in fifteen countries and ensures the employment of more than two thousand people. In October 1957, it is struck down in Italy, where it remained a few days there to go back in form. Of aucuns will say that it was recalled by God to repair the angels.
Its biography was written by Pochna Marie-France. Christian Dior is the creator of the style " New Look." Its artistic aspirations are broken by his/her mother and remained a long time with the drag of his/her friends, the majority also homosexual, of which Cocteau, Poulenc, max Jacob and Maurice Sachs. Its beginnings were difficult. Hundreds of testimonys and diaries reveal a generous and funny until the buffoonery, but deeply secret being and which hid its homosexuality. In his memories, the Baron de Rédé reports a rumor according to which Dior would have died of an attack whereas it made love with two young men. His/her companion of the time was an Algerian singer, Jacques Benita, born in 1930.
ContinuityHe had however very envisaged: with the young person Yves the St. Lawrence to take again the Parisian house and with Marc Bohan those of London and New York. The first collection of YSL, entered in 1955 with the service of Christian Dior, is a true triumph. But it leaves the house in 1960, and it is Marc Bohan who takes again the whole responsibility for the artistic director. Until 1989, it will take care of the absolute respect of the traditions of elegance of the main . Gianfranco Shoed which succeeds to him, will not betray them either, with an equal direction of architecture and flamboyance.
All will accelerate truly little before the Années 1990, at the moment when the company passes under the control of the tycoon of the luxury Bernard Arnault. Become president of the group LVMH, it reunifies in 1989 the perfumes and the seam, separated since 1968. It is him also which makes call in 1996 with the dressmaker, John Galliano, to give again in Dior of the punch and the visibility. Provocative and unforeseeable dandy, it makes his processions for Dior impossible to circumvent and electric. For the anecdote, the first dress which it draws is for the princess Diana, who carries it during the inauguration of the 50 years exposure of the Dior mark to MoMa of New York (1997). It makes accessory a basic component, and dedicates a worship with the main . It is not rare to hear it of the timeless presence of Christian Dior in the spirit of her collections.
In 1996, Dior has 16 shops throughout the world; there are of them 92 in 2000, and more than 160 at the present time. In the year 2000, the sales turnover of Christian Dior Couture was established to 296 million euros, it is assembled, only for the first six-month period 2006, to 329 million euros.
The current force of Dior, it is incontestably the creation and the diversity of its creators. Victoire de Castellane directs the Joaillerie, while Kris van Assche, which replaces Hedi Slimane since 2007, deals with the artistic director of the line man.
The receipts which made the success and which currently makes the success of the Christian Dior house are very characteristic of the medium of the luxury: creativity with excess, quality, passion, innovation, culture, notion of the dream and artistic sensitivity. This alchemy of the product, allied a financial good management, makes it possible this house of haute couture to remain perennial. Because behind the emblematic figures which are Christian Dior, Yves Saint Laurent, Marc Bohan, Gianfranco Ferré or John Galliano, it are necessary to be main its finances. At Dior, it is Sidney Toledano, little known of the general public, which fulfills this function of “treasurer” and who has the role of channeling in the right direction the creative forces. Collections which are renewed unceasingly with a frantic rate, an important personnel, permanent factories, manufactures, constraints, compromises between the desire of the creators, financial realities and the requirements for quality, and all this must function in logical manner and quasi relentless, with the risk to endanger the whole building. It is also a question of finding a coherence between the haute couture and the ready-made clothes.
- Article on Christian Dior
- History of Christian Dior
- Photographs illustrating the presence of the Christian Dior House in Japan
- the official site of the house Christian Dior
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