Dior brings English countryside to Paris for star-studded show

The spring/summer collection was an homage to British painter Duncan Grant

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Flowers, art and Dior’s world-famous ateliers collided for a sweet-smelling explosion of creativity on Friday.

The house’s Paris Fashion Week show was an homage to late British painter Duncan Grant a celebrated member of London’s Bloomsbury Group, a British collective of writers, intellectuals and artists in the early 20th century who are often cited by designer Kim Jones as an influence. Grant died in 1978.

Scroll through the gallery above for more images from the Dior spring/summer show

VIP guests gawped as they entered a Dior-branded tent to discover the makeshift country vista — filled with an estimated 19,000 real poppies, wildflowers and flora planted on hills beside two reconstructed English country houses.

All this for the 10-minute fashion show. The set was, of course, intended to evoke Grant’s rolling landscapes.

Jessica Biel and Justin Timberlake attend the Dior Homme show. Getty Images

There were almost as many famous faces on display as flowers. David Beckham and son Cruz, Naomi Campbell, J Balvin, Justin Timberlake and Jessica Biel were among the starry Dior front row staring out across the petals and tufts of grass.

Designers Olivier Rousteing of Balmain and Matthew Williams from Givenchy were also in attendance along with a number of influencers including Emirati twins, Mohammed and Humaid Hadban, in their signature matching look.

Emirati twins Humaid and Mohammed Hadban at the Dior show. Getty Images

For spring, designer Jones recreated the painter’s universe by not just evoking his masterpieces, but by creating the actual garments he wore while working — such as his straw gardening hat reimagined as a pergola fused on baseball cap, fashioned by Stephen Jones the milliner.

Grant’s signature suits were also a key theme, yet reinvented in Jones’s style with clever fashion forward twists.

Myriad references riffed on the 1930s — the artist’s heyday. Two sleeves were used in the place of a retro sash on a loose vanilla double-breasted suit. They hung down in the middle abstractly, poking out underneath the jacket. Elsewhere tailored shorts sported turned-down waistbands in the slightly clunkier styles of that time between the two wars.

Wooly socks and gardening shoes were a fun nod to the painter, who spent much of his time outdoors, yet also a nod to Jones himself, a designer for whom humour is never far away. The palette of the collection was, fittingly, garden and pond inspired with greens and blues as well as pastels.

This season's menswear calendar features top fashion houses including Givenchy, Rick Owens and Kenzo. Louis Vuitton took the stage on Thursday, Hermes will be on Saturday, and Celine wraps up the week with the final show on Sunday.

— Additional reporting by AP and Reuters

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Updated: June 25, 2022, 12:47 PM
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