When Dior’s creative director Maria Grazia Chiuri was faced with the prospect of the Dior Cruise 2022 show, it’s unsurprising that she reflected on the feelings of the world post-pandemic. Sportswear has taken over our wardrobes as our time at home has led us to embrace ease over elegance, but for Chiuri, the sporty look has an entirely different connotation.
“I’m interested in clothes as a way of giving freedom of movement,” she told Vogue ahead of the show. “Women want freedom, especially after this long lockdown”, she continued. “That’s what we desire: to move our bodies.”
Naturally, there were few heels on this runway, which was just as well because it’s probably the longest some of these models have ever had to walk in a fashion show. Rather appropriately, the show took place at the colossal Panathenaic Stadium in Athens, Greece; a sports arena built more than 2,300 years ago.
Indeed, Greek influences could be seen throughout the show, from the Bjork-esque tulle swan gown inspired by the myth of Leda, to the asymmetrical column dresses in gold and ivory with delicate pleats all teamed with trainers and sports bras.
Chiuri took influences from the Greco-Roman influences of her Italian upbringing, as well as archive images of a Dior model posing in the Acropolis, and Marlene Dietrich dressed as Leda; a figure whose own gender fluidity was paid tribute to in a some sensational loose ivory suits.
The famous Bar Jacket was given an ath-flow makeover by tailor and embroidery extraordinaire Aristeidis Tzonevraki, while Dior’s traditional houndstooth pattern was adapted by Soufli silk factory Silk Line.
Still, ancient history gives birth to sci-fi futurism with some of the more casual sports looks; royal blue motifs with metallics and shield-style sunglasses make an exciting prospect for getting back to the gym in a post-pandemic world. And oversized trainers with mesh inserts bring back practicality.
“Sport is movement, sport is freedom,” said Maria Grazia Chiuri. “During lockdown, you would walk around your building just to get a sense of moving your body. That became our idea of freedom.”