January 23, 2012

Dior: New Look

Most people know what silhouette to think of when the fifties are mentioned; narrow waists and full petticoat skirts. But where did this look came from? It was in fact quite different from the slim shapes fashionable during the forties. And what did WW II have to do with it?
A sketch of the 1947 New Look
Christian Dior, one of the most famous fashion designers in the 20th century, was responsible for this so called 'New Look.The end of wartime restrictions caused a major change in the shape of fashion as they knew it. Launched in 1947 at his Paris opening, Christian Dior's 'New Look', shook the world of fashion. His extravagant use of fabric, tight waist and molded bust were reminiscent of the past. Dior's timing couldn't be more perfect.  After the war women longed for frivolity in dress and desired feminine clothes that did not look like a civilian version of a military uniform.
Dior developed a stiff synthetic net used to fill out his skirts, widely known as "Dior Net". The overknee petticoat (r)emerged from this underskirt and was worn daily by most women in the fifties. And while the majority found the new silhouette a symbol of prosperity, a few saw the physical restrictions and requirements of fashion as a return to a less active role for women. But in general, women embraced the new sophisticated design, and eagerly expanded their wardrobes collecting an outfit for every social occasion.
Dior's New Look lasted only until mid-decade when a straighter, more relaxed silhouette emerged. Christian Dior brought the center of the fashion world back to Paris, where he reined the fashion world until his untimely death in 1957. The house of Dior is still in production, and remains one of the leaders in haute couture. An although Dior himself has passed away more than fifty years ago, his New Look remains ever so popular... even to this day where the options and possibilities in fashion are endless.
I am a big fan!


  1. how lovely!
    ik ben ook een grote fan! wauw.


  2. Wat een schitterende foto, die laatste!

  3. Het silhouet ziet er inderdaad zo mooi, stijlvol en vrouwelijk uit ... gewoon prachtig :-)


... it makes my day!