Thursday, September 10, 2009
But He Seams Straight: John Galliano for Christian Dior
For all of Galliano's flamboyant showmanship (and occasional nonsense with half-dressed models), the man upholds the Dior heritage of tailoring with the reverence the name deserves.
Look here at this wonderful Prince-of-Wales houndstooth check suit, shown in the August Paris Vogue. It's so neatly tailored it would make Wallis Simpson weep in her grave, for the fact of being too dead to wear it.
Click on the picture to see more detail--the crossover double-breasted fashioning looks effortless, but must have been the devil to effect. Even more impressive is the meticulous pattern matching across the front opening, and across the shoulder area and arms. If there is a shoulder seam, I can't see it--it's that good.
I've talked about pattern matching before, and how reliable an indicator it is of exquisite attention to detail on the part of a design team. Recently, I bought a vintage Valentino Miss V jacket on eBay for $30/£18 for this very reason.
I loved the fact that the Romans had a go with a motif that is essentially Central Asian. The wool fabric would be right at home in a seraglio of some regional warlord, retired after pillaging the West.
As such, it's a bit of a pain finding the right bottom half to balance it. It's a bruiser of a pattern, begging for a fight with another one, or to be muzzled under layers of shawls. Ideally I'd wear it with dusty blue suede trousers, or possibly a pair of pyjama-y silk cigarette pants in a smaller-grade paisley, whose colors complement those in the jacket.
Since I have neither, I'll probably wear it with dark denim jeans. It's possible that the workers who sewed this jacket--as complex as the piecework is--actually had an easier time matching it than I will.
(photo top Inez Lamsweerde and Vinoodh Matadin for Paris Vogue, styled by Carine Roitfeld)