Raf Simons began his Dior appointment at the pinnacle, debuting not with ready-to-wear, but with a collection of haute couture. And a prolific one at that, with 54 looks. What seemed like destiny after his three season couture-inspired trilogy at Jil Sander, the Belgian is now able to utilise the skill and resources of Dior's renowned ateliers in tandom with his vision – most striking when 'New Look' Dior silhouettes were truncated at the waist, worn with cigarette pants and a pure, modernist heel. Dazed's Senior Contributing Fashion Editor Katie Shillingford reports...
"The catwalk went through a number of rooms, where walls were covered floor to ceiling in different coloured flowers. I was sat in the yellow flower room but there was a white orchid room, blue, pink and red rooms too. It was incredible!
The collection was very much Raf. It was his interpretation of Dior but there were aspects of it that I thought were very Dior. For instance the silhouettes to me were very Dior 'New Look' but a modern version, worn over black trousers or in a very modern, bright colour palette.
The make-up was really amazing. It started off with a silvery eyeliner and a fluoro pink or orange/red lip and then moved onto even more colour in the eyes. I loved the fluoro pink or green eyelashes/eyeliner. For the finale all the girls had a veil on, a little nod to the bride being the last look of a couture show. It was so beautiful and classic but super modern too.
The whole thing was incredibly exciting – I would love to shoot everything, it was a dream. This felt like a very important moment for the fashion world and a real turning point for couture. I was surprised by the vast number of looks – there were 54 in total! And Aphex Twin's 'Windowlicker' on the soundtrack. Weirdly I had been listening to that yesterday thinking it would be so great for a show.
Julia Nobis looked incredible opening, wearing the first in a string of all-black suits. Daria Strokous closed in a dress that was two tone, completely different at the back from the front."