Taking advantage of the EU’s easing of travel restrictions in July, Maria Grazia Chiuri presented her resort 2021 show for Christian Dior at the heart of Piazza del Duomo in Lecce. This tiny town in the south of Italy, where her father is from, is home to a community of specialised artisans, weavers, embroiderers and textile makers, whose skills Chiuri tapped for the collection.
The runway was a sheer visual spectacle presented via a 26-minute video live stream with folk dancers and models sharing the square in front of Lecce’s cathedral. In this context, Chiuri’s signature silhouettes felt different. There was a sense of warmth and comfort, amplified by tradition and kinship. The quintessential bar jacket came in a boxier cut with relaxed shoulders, while her woven pinafore dresses, peasant skirts and cardigans featured fringes for extra movement.
As breathtaking as those lush 3D flowers were on the dresses and skirts by master embroiderer Marilena Sparasci, the real showstopper was the floral handcrafted corsets worn over Chiuri’s signature floaty dresses that take craftsmanship to a whole new level. In fragile times like now, where the urge to connect is stronger than ever before, this collection is one of Chiuri’s most honest and sincere because, truly, home is where the heart is.