Last week, a New York Times article celebrated the return of high heels after a year of slippers and sneakers. But Dior’s latest collection screams, “Not so fast!”
On Thursday, the Parisian house debuted its Cruise 2022 collection full of ethereal gowns with futuristic sneakers, showing that glamour and comfort can maybe — just maybe — go together post-quarantine.
Shown in Athens, Greece, the collection is inspired by “a series of photographs of one of Monsieur Dior’s haute couture lines, taken near the iconic Parthenon in 1951,” according to the press release from the brand. It's also a nod to the Olympic Games, which — while taking place in Tokyo this year — originated in ancient Greece in 776 B.C., and were held in Athens in 2004. The show even took place at the Panathenaic Stadium, “where in ancient times games in honour of the goddess Athena were held.” (According to the press release, Dior worked with Greek archaeologists to ensure the historic site’s preservation for the duration of the event.)
A Greek goddess-inspired collection also seems fitting for designer Maria Grazia Chiuri, who has a long history of centring feminism in her runway shows. Style-wise, just like in past collections, Chiuri showcased long gowns and calf-length dresses emblematic of her brand — one that mixes unabashedly feminine aesthetics with functionality. This time, Chiuri showed draped ivory dresses, worn with gold metallic belts and the aforementioned sneakers. There were also gowns with mesh cutouts embellished with crystals and vaccination-approved cold shoulders.
As if to add to the Olympian theme, the Italian designer featured sportswear, a departure from her usually delicate silhouettes. A turtleneck crop top, paired with knee-length basketball shorts and leggings, featured a star-studded print in a blue-, white-, and-lime green colour-blocked combo, as well as oversized ‘80s graphic jackets.
Dior also took the opportunity to partner with local ateliers and craftsmen in Athens, who were commissioned to create pieces and details included in the collection, such as sketches of women in Greek mythology that appear in the folds of dresses by Greek artist Christiana Soulou and embroidery by Aristeidis Tzonevrakis, among others.
You can watch the full collection of Greecian gowns and comfy sneakers, below.