Dark History of Dior

Hello everyone, and welcome to another story of “Dark history of fashion brands”, precious posts have been written on “Dark history of Adidas” and “Dark history of Chanel”. During my research on the history of fashion brands I realised that fashion brands are not built on ” good” “perfect” foundations as we all tend to believe, there are elements of darkness mixed with them, and to get to the matter at hand, let’s discuss about the Dark history of Dior.

While I was going through the history of Dior, I realised that there is nothing dark or any messed up back story to it’s growth, the only thing I found that appears to be dark was that Dior was criticized by other famous and successful fashion icons such as Coco Chanel, the creator of “Chanel”, and also that Dior was in fact said to be supporting anorexia in women because of their designs, other than that the history of Dior is pretty much good, it doesn’t have that much dark elements in it like those of Adidas and Chanel, but still, we should all still know the history of Dior so enjoy your stay and read.

History of Dior

           The house of Christian Dior is not only a modern fashion giant but posses an incredibly rich history and timeless designs. From the very beginning of its days in Paris to its gradual and steady expansion globally, this label has never stopped whisking people away with its innovative approach to fashion and magical collections.

According to Wikipedia:

The company was founded in 1946 by designer Christian Dior. It currently designs and retails leather goods, fashion accessories, footwear, jewelry, timepieces, fragrance, makeup, and skin care products, while also maintaining its tradition as a creator of haute-couture under the Christian Dior Couture division. The Christian Dior label remains largely for women’s offerings, although the company also operates the Dior Homme division for men and the baby Diorlabel for children’s wear. Products are sold throughout its portfolio of retail stores worldwide, as well as through its online store

From Christian Dior himself, Yves Saint Laurent and now John Galliano, this label has never lacked genius. When people hear the name Dior role off the bright red lips of a somebody, they automatically think luxury, haute couture, and desire. The story of the house is a story that must be told. It is a story that has changed the world. I am so glad I don’t live in a world where there is no Dior.

And there you have it, there really isn’t much to say about the “Dark” history of Dior, as there is little to no dark elements, but you can still enjoy the history and fun facts which I got from my research.

The History and Timeline of the Christian Dior Brand:

1946: The House of Dior is founded on December 16 at 30 Avenue Montaigne in Paris. The current house of Dior celebrates

1947 as the establishing year.

1947: The House of Dior launched its first spring/summer collection, The New Look, at their headquater salon. The New Look line collection would go on to become revolutionary, influencing other designers and the fashion industry or many years.

1947: The founding of Christian Dior parfumes and the first Dior perfume is launched, Miss Dior. Pierre Cardin was made head of the Dior workshop until 1950.

FUN FACT: The Miss Dior parfume, Miss Dior was named after Catherine Dior, Christian Dior’s sister.

1948: The New York City Christian Dior parfume branch is opened. A ready-to-wear house is also opened in New York City at the corner of 5th Avenue and 57th street.

1949: The Diorama fragrance is launched.

FUN FACT: By this year the New Look line made a profit of 12.7 million dollars.

1950: Jaques Rouët devised a plan that allowed the Christian Dior name to be visible on a number of luxury items. The first luxury goods to have the Christian Dior name was neckties and quickly moved on to hosiery, furs, handbags, jewelry and scarves. Christian Dior was the exclusive designer for Marlene Dietrich’s for Alfred Hitchcock film Stage Fight.

1951: Dior released hid first book, Je Suis Couturier (I am a Couturier).

1952: Christina Dior Models Limited was created in London.

1953: The Christian Dior shoe line is launched with the help of Roger Vivier. By the end of 1953 the Dior company was firmly planted in Mexico, Cuba, Canada, and Italy.

1954: The first Dior boutique was established at 9 Counduit Street. A fashion show was held at the Blemhein Palace in honour of Princess Margaret and the Duchess of Marlborough.

1955: Dior opened the Grande Boutique between Avenue Montaigne and Rue François ler. 1955 also marked the release of the first Dior lipstick.

1956: The house of Dior celebrates its 10th anniversary and by this time had sold 100,000 garments. This was the year that actress Ava Gardner had 14 Dior dresses made for the film The Little Hut.

1957: Christian Dior appeared on the cover of Time magazine on March 4th. Shortly after that Mr. Christian Dior died from his third heart attack while vacationing in Italy. In an effort to save and revive a company that was overcome with chaos and sadness, Rouët appointed Yves Saint Laurent as artistic director of the house of Dior. At the time of his appointment, Mr. Saint Laurent was 21 years old.

FUN FACT: Saint Laurent had joined the Dior house back in 1955. He was chosen by Christian Dior himself to come and join the Dior family. His position in 1955 was Head Assistant.

1958: Laurent produces his first collection under the Dior label.

1960: Laurent left the house if Dior in 1960 when he was called to the army. He was replaced by Marc Bohan who proved to be a much more conservative designer.

FUN FACT: Yves Saint Laurent produced widely popular collections in his early years with Dior. He started to become more and more daring and risky with is designs. When it came time for him to leave the house and enter the army, the Dior house was not complaining.

1961: The spring/summer collection, The Slim Look, was quite successful. Actress Elizabeth Taylor ordered 12 dresses from this collection.

1963: The perfume Diorling was launched.

1966: The male scent, Eau Sauvage, was released.

1967: Bohan’s assistant, Philippe Guibourgé launches the first French ready-to-wear collection called Miss Dior. Bohan also opens the first Baby Dior store at 28 Avenue Montaigne.

1968: The Dior knit collection is established. During this year the Management of the Fashion Furs department is taken over by Frédéric Castet.

1969: The first Christian Dior Cosmetics business is created and an exclusive line is launched.

1970: Christian Dior house launches its first Christian Dior Homme line.

1972: Christian Dior’s Diorella fragrance is released.

1973: The first Christian Dior ready-to-wear fur collection is presented.

1975: The “Black Moon” Christian Dior watch is released in collaboration with Benedom.

FUN FACT: Dior is warn by Princess Grace of Monaco, Princess Alexandria of Yugoslavia and Lady Pamela Hicks at the royal wedding of Prince Charles and Princess Diana.

1978: The Boussac Group, owners of the Christian Dior label, files for bankruptcy. Its assets were sold to the Willot Group.

1979: The fragrance Dioressence is released.

1980: The men’s fragrance Jules is released.

1981: The Willot Group files for bankruptcy.

1984: The Dior label is purchased by Bernard Arnault for ‘one symbolic franc’ in December.

1985: The parfume Poison is launched. The owner, Bernard Arnault becomes the Chief Executive Officer, and Managing Director of the dior company.

1989: Gianfranco Ferré replaces Marc Bohan. Ferré was head of design for Haute Couture, Haute Fourrure, Women’s Ready-to-Wear, Ready-to-Wears Furs and Women’s Accessories collection. Ferré was awarded the Dé d’Or for his first collection. A Christian Dior store was opened in Hawaii.

FUN FACT: Ferré is the first non-french designer to take charge of the design house.

1990: Dior opened boutiques in New York City, Los Angeles and Tokyo.

1991: Fragrance Dune is launched.

1992: Dior Homme is placed under the artistic vision and command of Patrick Lavoix. The Miss Dior perfume is re-released.

1995: The Dior Haute Couture was created into its own division called Christian Dior Couture.

1997: John Galliano was appointed the new creative director to replace Ferré. On October 5th, the Dior headquarters store is re-opened after a renovation fit for royalty.

FUN FACT: John Galliano won favor and admiration from probably the most important American, Editor-in-Chief, Anna Wintour. It was under her influence the Galliano was appointed to Creative Director for the Dior label.

1998: In may, a second Dior boutique is opened is Paris. Victoire de Castellena became the head designer for Dior fine jewelry. A fine jewelry boutique was opened in New York.

1999: A Dior fine jewelry boutique is opened in Paris. On October 5th the fragrance J’adore is released. Galliano presents his spring/summer collection and with this collection came the famous saddlebags.

2000: John Galliano’s kingdom grew as he became head of Ready-to-Wear, accessories, advertising and communications. In July, the Dior Homme lead role was given to Hedi Slimane who replaced Patrick Lavoix.

FUN FACT: John Galliano’s first photoshoot was done by Nick Knight and featured to models simulating intercourse. This started the craze of porn chic fashion spreads in the industry.

2001: The Dior Homme boutique was reopened after a renovation that gave off a more masculine feel. The men’s fragrance, Higher, is relaunched. John Galliano began to release his own watch line, the first line being Chris 47 Aluminum line.

FUN FACT: The launch of John Galliano’s watch designs marked a revolutionary milestone in the house of Dior.

2002: On June 3rd, Slimane was presented with the International Designer of the year from the CFDA. On February 20th, a Dior Homme boutique was opened in Milan. The men’s fragrance, Addict, is launched. Taking influence from his spring/summer collection, the Dior 66 watch was produced.
2003: The cousin watch to the Chris 47 Aluminum, the Chris 47 Steel, was released. Victoire de Castellane, the head designer of fine jewelry at Dior, launched her own watch called Le D de Dior (The D of Dior). This launch signified the inclusion of watches into the fine jewelry collections.
FUN FACT: The design of Le D de Dior ladies watch was a pioneer in the trends of watch making. It took the many features of a men’s watch and applied them to female collections. Watches were also released by Slimane for Dior Homme called Chiffre Rouge and another ladies watch was created and launched by de Castellane called La Baby de Dior. This second ladies line took on a more feminine look.

2004: A second flagship store was opened up in Ginza, Tokyo. An exclusive Dior Homme store is opened in Paris. This store carries the entire Homme collection. Adding to an already busy year for the label, a second fine jewelry boutique was opened in Paris.

2003: A Dior boutique was opened in Moscow.

2005: The women’s fragrance, Miss Dior Chérie, and the men’s fragrance, Dior Homme, are launched. The Dior label celebrates the 13th anniversary of its watch collections. The Dior House celebrates the 100th birthday of founder Christian Dior. In honor of the masters birthday and exhibition called, Christian Dior: Man of the Century was held in the Dior Museum in Granville Normandy. John Galliano adds to the excitement of a monumental year and creates his Dior Christal watch, which combines steel and blue sapphires.

FUN FACT: The Chiffre Rouge watch collection was recognized by the World Watches and Jewelry Show in Basel, Switzerland in April of 2005.

2006: The Dior watch booth is dedicated to the Dior Canework. The pattern based on the Napoleon III chairs used in fashion shows, was created by Christian Dior himself.

2007: Kris Van Assche takes becomes the new Artistic Director of Dior Homme. Th 60th anniversary of the founding of the Dior Maison is celebrated.

2011: John Galliano is removed as creative director.

2012: Raf Simons takes over for Galliano as creative director.

Celebrity Fans:

Blake Lively
Charlize Theron
Brad Pitt

Mick Jagger

The House:

Creative Director- John Galliano

Creative Director of Dior Homme- Kris Van Assche

Designer of Dior Fine Jewelry- Victoire de Castellane

Press Moments:

The New York Times Profile- ‘Christian Dior, whose “New Look” in 1947 scandalized yet seduced French women emerging from the grim years of World War II, helped secure France’s place in international fashion in the post-war years.’

If you were entertained by this history, kindly share with your friends and family and other fashion lovers on all your various social medias by clicking on the “social media icons” you see on this page. And let me know the fashion brands you would like for me to make my research on their “Dark history”.

Which Dark history do you want to learn of next- Vans or Balenciaga ? Or both of them? Comment your answer below in the comment box.

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