Hello From London

“Christian Dior: Designer of Dreams” exhibit at the Victoria & Albert Museum in London, England.

By Janice Carter Levitch

By being natural and sincere, one often can create revolutions without having sought them.”
–Christian Dior

Let me tell you about my recent trip that took me all the way to London, England. The journey was inspired by one of my kiddos who is studying abroad for a summer college program, and I was accompanied by my sweetheart, Steve. Once we got the itinerary fine-tuned, we were leaving on a jet plane for an overnight flight. Evidently, this was the smart approach as we were planning to sleep during the flight so that we would awake in the UK feeling fresh as a Beatle ready to take a stroll on Abbey Road (I know, I know. Forgive my corny joke.)

Janice in the iconic red telephone box designed by the English architect Sir Giles Gilbert Scott.

Our schedule was jam-packed, and we were looking forward to seeing everything. The first stop was Claridge’s (a fancy five-star hotel) where the likes of Winston Churchill and Diane Von Furstenberg have stayed along with other well-known celebrities and dignitaries. After getting unpacked and settled into this glamorous haven, we made our way to the Victoria & Albert Museum to explore their latest fashion exhibit. Though it was sold out, our inside track with the Claridge’s concierge managed to get us access with what appeared to be an effortless snap of the finger, and voilà, we were on our way.

Christian Dior prototypes and haute couture gowns on display at the Victoria & Albert Museum in London, England.

The exhibit, called “Christian Dior: Designer of Dreams,” spans from present day back to 1947, when Christian Dior first began his career as an innovative fashion designer. Needless to say, I was looking forward to learning more about the history of his success and having the opportunity to view some of the haute couture designs up close.

At the gift shop, I purchased the beautifully-composed book to complement the exhibit that was written by Oriole Cullen and Connie Karol Burks and released by V&A Publishing. This is an excerpt from the book that I feel perfectly conveys Dior’s vision for fashion:

“Anchored by the curves of the female figure, Christian Dior’s designs played with structure and proportion to create clothes that powerfully expressed an attitude. He considered carefully the effect of movement, acknowledging that even the most ethereal garment relied on meticulous construction and elaborate workmanship.”

Another fashion tip from Dior can be summed up in this quote and how he expresses his affinity for the color black (I wanted to cry because, of course, I wear black constantly): “Black is the most popular, the most convenient and the most elegant of all colors. You can wear black at any time, at any age, you may wear it for almost any occasion; a ‘little black frock’ is essential to a woman’s wardrobe. I could write a book about black.”

Jennfer Lawrence photographed by Viviane Sassen for Christian Dior’s Cruise 2019 Campaign.

The connection between Louisville and the fashions of Dior are evident in the current Cruise 2019 Campaign photographed by Viviane Sassen featuring our own Jennifer Lawrence as shown in what else, a “little black frock.” Jennifer has said of her experience in a previous interview with Harper’s Bazaar, “Every monumental moment with my career has been in a Dior dress.” I’m all for loyalty such as Jennifer’s devotion to wearing Dior for the special stages in her career. That same loyalty and devotion span 70 years for The Voice-Tribune and our legacy in the local community. I, for one, am all for keepin’ it local. V