Beautiful Christian Dior Exhibition, Victoria and Albert Museum, London, 2019

Well before I left for my trip to England, Nicole, a personal shopper I follow on Instagram who often travels to England, posted a video highlighting the Christian Dior Exhibition taking place in the Victoria and Albert Museum in London. I checked the dates of the exhibit and was disappointed to see it would be ending the day before our arrival in London. When we arrived in London, I was so happy to discover that due to its popularity the dates of the exhibition had been extended.

Since we were staying in the heart of London, our hotel was a very short Uber drive away from the Victoria and Albert Museum. It was fairly crowded when I arrived but since the number of tickets sold each day was being tightly controlled, the crowds inside the exhibition rooms were not overwhelming.

This exhibition is an in-depth look at many of Christian Dior’s designs, spanning from 1947 to the present day. The information online about the exhibit states, “This exhibition traces the history and impact of one of the 20th century’s most influential couturiers, exploring the enduring influence of the fashion house, and Dior’s relationship with Britain.”

I had never been to a fashion exhibition of this type before and loved it! It was also a great opportunity to people watch as many of those in attendance were dressed beautifully, as well. Hope you enjoy this sampling of the fashions I saw while touring the exhibition.

Just inside the entrance to the exhibit was a large copy of this beautiful portrait of Princess Margaret on her birthday. Information nearby stated

Princess Margaret, the glamorous younger sister of the present Queen, first met Christian Dior in 1949 when she visited his salon during her first European holiday. In 1951, for her 21st birthday, Dior designed a dress especially for her. He considered it a great honor. Dior adored the Princess. He praised her style and grace, describing her as “so very charming”. Margaret remained a client of the House of Dior for many years.

Christian Dior Exhibition, 2019, London England

 

The actual dress was displayed nearby. It was wonderful seeing it in person. I wonder if the embellishments on the dress have yellowed with time or perhaps the lighting in the photo above made everything appear white in color?

Christian Dior Exhibition, 2019, London England

 

I wasn’t able to capture all the information for every dress on display, (there were so many) but I’m sharing what I was able to capture in today’s post.

Romanesque Dress
Haute Couture, Autumn/Winter 1950
Oblique line
Silk
Silk (velvet) hat, 1953-1954

Christian Dior Exhibition, 2019, London England

 

Ulysse Coat
Haute Couture, Autumn/Winter 1952
Profilée line
Wool
Silk (velvet, grosgrain) hat, Autumn/Winter 1952

Christian Dior Exhibition, 2019, London England

 

Aladin Dress
Haute couture, Autumn/Winter 1953
Vivante line (‘Lively’)
Silk (satin)
Wool (felt) and silk (grosgrain) hat, about 1950

 

There were many galleries to explore in this exhibition.

Christian Dior Exhibition, 2019, London England

 

Christian Dior Exhibition, 2019, London England

 

Christian Dior Exhibition, 2019, London England

 

Information on display stated:

Christian Dior often cited historic periods in this design–the sinuous lines of Belle Epoque dress from the late 1800s; the tightly waisted mid-19th-century styles worn by the French Empress Eugenie. The sumptuous silks and dramatic silhouettes of the 18th century held a particular fascination.

Numerous references to the 18th century can be found in the dresses created by Dior and his successors. They draw on the lavish style of the court dress worn at Versailles and the decor and decorative arts of the period.

Christian Dior Exhibition, 2019, London England

 

Christian Dior Exhibition, 2019, London England

 

Christian Dior Exhibition, 2019, London England

 

Christian Dior Exhibition, 2019, London England

 

Christian Dior Exhibition, 2019, London England

 

Christian Dior Exhibition, 2019, London England

 

Christian Dior Exhibition, 2019, London England

 

The information below was displayed in the area where the following designs were on display.

As a young man, Christian Dior was drawn to travel. In his twenties, he ventured to London, Athens, Istanbul and Leningrad. He spent nearly a year in the Balearic Islands in the Mediterranean recuperating from an illness.

From the launch of his first collection, Dior took inspiration from the architecture, landscapes, art and textiles of different countries and cities, naming his dresses after the places that inspired them. These creative influences grew as Dior expanded his business around the world, building an international fashion realm that stretched from South America to Japan.

Each of Dior’s later creative directors has interpreted ideas of world travel in a unique way. This gallery focuses on five of the countries which have inspired Dior and his successors: Mexico, Japan, Egypt, China and India.

Christian Dior Exhibition, 2019, London England

 

Christian Dior Exhibition, 2019, London England

 

Christian Dior Exhibition, 2019, London England

 

Christian Dior Exhibition, 2019, London England

 

Christian Dior Exhibition, 2019, London England

 

Photos do not capture the beauty of this dress. It was stunning!

Christian Dior Exhibition, 2019, London England

 

Christian Dior Exhibition, 2019, London England

 

Christian Dior Exhibition, 2019, London England

 

This gallery focused more on black and white fashions.

Christian Dior Exhibition, 2019, London England

 

Christian Dior Exhibition, 2019, London England

 

This was a display of the many transitions/stages a design goes through before it is complete.

Christian Dior Exhibition, 2019, London England

 

I would love to have spent more time here, but as you can see it was pretty crowded.

Christian Dior Exhibition, 2019, London England

 

Another example of how Christian Dior designs are created.

Christian Dior Exhibition, 2019, London England

 

Christian Dior Exhibition, 2019, London England

 

These fashions were displayed toward the end of the exhibit. I’ve had a Lady Dior handbag on my wishlist for years. Several months back I came close to purchasing one in the studded style shown below, only it was in a dark blue color. Still dreaming of that bag!

Christian Dior Exhibition, 2019, London England

 

More beautiful Dior creations…

Christian Dior Exhibition, 2019, London England

 

Christian Dior Exhibition, 2019, London England

 

Christian Dior Exhibition, 2019, London England

 

Hope you enjoyed this peek into the Christian Dior exhibition at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London. I very much recommend seeing it if you find your self in London prior to the exhibition’s new closing date, September 1, 2019.

Christian Dior Exhibition, 2019, London England

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Comments

  1. Stunning beyond words. Does the exhibit give the names of his creative directors?

  2. I loved this. Everything about these dresses shout feminine. These designs embody a woman in shape, style and even where they might originate. Lovely to see. Thanks for sharing.

  3. I’m amazed at how unique each dress is. So creative and beautiful! That red dress has my name all over it. 🙂
    Have a lovely day!!
    Kim

  4. Gayle Kesinger says

    If a reader can’t make it to London, the Dior is also at the Dallas Museum of Art until September 1.

  5. OOOOoooohhhh…the “Real Deal!!” How marvelous to see up close in detail!! I enjoyed seeing “the First Ladies” frocks at the Smithsonian on my lunch break…this had to be fab!! franki

  6. Jeanette Fellhauer says

    I saw this exhibit a couple of years ago right after it opened in Paris. It was one of the most amazing things I’ve ever seen. The crowds were heavy. I spent hours in there and could have stayed longer. I also saw a Fortuny exhibit in Paris. It was wonderful too, though not as large as the Dior exhibit.

  7. Judy Brucker says

    Thanks for sharing your photos! The gowns are so varied and such beautiful fabric and details. Glad you were able to see the exhibit.

  8. Thank you for sharing! I throughly enjoyed this post. Unfortunately I won’t be able to vie in person. ☹️
    You were very fortunate to see all those beautiful dresses!

  9. On another note, heading to Kettering for four days. Seeing Frankie Valli at Fraze!!

  10. My word, my word, what a thrill it must have been to be so close to such beautiful creations! I loved all the fabrics, sparkles, different styles and creativity. Thank you for sharing this exhibition with us.

  11. Oh my goodness, these dresses are stunning! What a treat to see, I almost felt like I was there! Cultured and elegant, simple or ornate, all very lovely to see. I really enjoyed looking at your photos and I’m going to show my 96 yr old grandma tonight when I go to visit her in assisted living. I know she’ll adore your pictures too! .

  12. Wow! That was amazing! I can’t even imagine being there.

  13. Impeccable designs! How fortunate you were to see these close up and in person! Thank for sharing. I was waiting for this post! ♥

  14. Great post Susan. Loved seeing all the beautiful dresses!

  15. I’m more in love with the fabrics….stunningly beautiful.

  16. Beautiful.

  17. Susan~
    Thank you for sharing !
    Years ago I took my daughter and we went to see the late Princess Di gowns exhibit in Dayton Ohio, it was such a thrill. !!!
    Also, the Victoria & Albert Museum is amazing we could have stayed in there for 2 days !
    Paula
    In

  18. I can only imagine seeing the beautiful fabrics and craftsmanship of these designer pieces in person. Every year my friends and I go to the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising FIDM’s exhibit in Los Angeles of the previous year’s Academy Award nominated and winning movie costumes. Seeing garments in person makes all the difference. Just gorgeous! Thank you for sharing!

  19. Susan James says

    Susan, Breathtakingly beautiful designs and fabrics. Dior is everything in femininity. I am so grateful that you shared this stunning display. Another Susan

  20. Linda Campbell says

    Thanks for sharing. What a absolutely beautiful collection. I loved seeing these. How wonderful that you were able to visit the exhibit and what a wonderful addition to your trip.

  21. OMG, Susan!
    All of those creations are just spectacular!
    I wish we knew who could afford them and wore them but more important to me is the question: why didn’t Princess Margaret keep her dress? How come it belongs to that CD Exibition? :/

  22. Wow. You were very fortunate to be able to see all those fabulous designs and exquisite fabrics.

    Susan, the experiences on your trip were awesome.
    Thanks for sharing, Patty

  23. Exquisite! I have always been a Dior fan, so thank you for the tour!

  24. Brenda Lawrence says

    Wow, glad they extended this showing because then were are able to go and share some of it with us. lol How interesting and beautiful are the clothing. I love the photo of Princess Margaret and love the gown she wore. You are right, the dress seems much white in the photo/painting than seeing it in real life. I love it much better in the photo, don’t like the yellowed look of it on the form. Thanks for sharing this with us Susan, I found it so interesting. Hugs, Brenda

  25. Mary Beth Eye says

    Stunning! I wish that I had made the time to attend this while I was at the Victoria and Albert

  26. I saw the Christian Dior Exhibition in Paris in December of 2017 at the Musee des Arts Decoratifs. It was just absolutely incredible. I didn’t want to leave.

  27. Cecilia from Georgia says

    I missed the Victoria and Albert Museum but will keep it in mind next time I’m in London. I enjoyed seeing your pictures and would love to see them in person. Thanks for sharing them.

  28. Thanks so much, Susan. I loved this. I am sharing with my friends and family.
    I’ve always wanted to go to the Victoria and Albert Museum. Next trip I will insist we go.

  29. The designs, fabric and workmanship are so exquisite and truly ‘golden’ !
    With total appreciation of you sharing. -Brenda-
    Footnote: In respect to historic influence; can recall one of my son’s History of Costume assignments while taking his ‘Haute Couture’ course (not to be confused with Fashion Design) was to recreate a garment and dress two Barbie Dolls using said concept/methods which also included undergarments and accessories (plus hairstyle). Needless to say, regardless of ‘her size’ it took many hours of labour just to achieve a passing grade but rumour has it, even Ken agreed she looked amazing in both versions (historic and influenced) … ☺.

  30. Linda Diane Townsend says

    These are so exquisite. I will look at these pictures again and again. Thank you.

  31. Susan, all so incredibly beautiful and feminine! Thanks for this post — one to revisit and savor. What a treat!

  32. P.S. Gayle Kesinger, thanks for noting the Dior exhibit at the Dallas Museum of Art until Sept. 1st — we’ll head over next weekend, for sure!!!

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