At Dior's fall 2018 show, artistic director Maria Grazia Chiuri thew it back 50 years, to France in May 1968, when civil unrest filled the streets and paved way for a nouveau feminist movement. As strikes and protests took place across Paris and beyond, fashion — and the silhouettes that defined the revolutionary period for women — found new traction, too. For her latest collection, Grazia Chiuri commemorated the movement and set forth a new palette of which to draw inspiration from for those who use clothing as protest.
The Italian designer strove to recreate an era when fashion's rules were under construction, which makes her latest showing for Dior all the more relevant. Ruth Bell opened the show in a black balaclava (the third accessory of its kind to hit Fashion Month this season) with a top emblazoned with the words "C'est non, non, non et non." There was patchwork, ponchos, tinted sunglasses, and check tailoring. But there was just as much flower power, too, in the form of delicate, psychedelic florals.
Noticeably absent from the collection was the country's national motto that, too, defined the era: Liberté, Egalité, Fraternité. But the overt references didn't stop there. The show notes began with a quote from legendary Vogue editor Diana Vreeland: “The sixties were about personalities. It was the first time when mannequins became personalities. It was a time of great goals, an inventive time… and these girls invented themselves.” Vreeland is credited with inventing the term 'youthquake' in 1965, and it'd go on to be crowned the word of the year in 2017. It's a term that feels especially pertinent to the today, as it defined the uprising of young people in London in the '60s.
Steadfastly pushing her feminist message, which she has promoted since her Dior debut, Maria Grazia Chiuri's referential collection provided a modern wardrobe for today's fashion-conscious female protestor. Considering the "We Should All Be Feminists" T-shirt from spring 2017 cost a hefty $700, this luxury brand of feminism may no longer be minimal, but it's still going to cost you. We’ll stick to the pins for now.