Dior’s Spring/Summer 2020 show kicked off Paris Fashion Week with a spirited focus on the environment. This season, Maria Grazia Chiuri teamed up with design collective Coloco to transform a Parisian racecourse into a sprawling “inclusive garden” filled with 164 different species of trees from around the world. These trees would later be planted around the city in an effort to underscore the importance of nature, (bio)diversity, and sustainability for both the fashion industry and the world beyond.
The arborous show set made its connection to the collection by way of Chiuri’s muse of the season, Catherine Dior — Christian Dior’s sister and the original Miss Dior — who was an avid gardener and botanist as well as a resistance fighter during World War II. Her determined spirit translated on the runway as a diversity of utilitarian-leaning designs: an opening striped burlap romper, blue button-down shirts, and various worker jackets, pants, and shorts in pragmatic khakis and earthy beiges that balanced Chiuri’s famously feminine dresses. Elaborate floral embroideries made of lace, silk, tulle and Jacquard displayed Dior’s proprietary artisanship, while intricate raffia pieces exhibited Chiuri’s dedication to hand craftsmanship under the style of herbaria. This season’s principal accessories were the raffia straw hats and perforated lace-up leather boots.