Dior opens Paris fashion week with a cathedral-inspired catwalk

Despite Covid-19 restrictions the label showed the runway is still sacred to the city

The audience may have been slashed to one-fifth of the size of last season, but Christian Dior built a cathedral for their fashion show, nonetheless. 18 light-box installations, each seven metres tall, brought the intense kaleidoscopic glory of Gothic stained-glass windows flooding into the vast blacked-out tent in the Tuileries garden erected for the event.

This was a show of grandeur in an industry embattled by seismic economic and social forces. Quarantine rules have pegged Paris fashion week back from being a global event to a domestic one, with few non-French attendees. Only 350 were present at the Christian Dior show, instead of the usual 1750. Comme des Garçons and other high-profile Japanese brands who have long been based in Paris have left the city in favour of shows in Tokyo next month. Yves Saint Laurent and Alexander McQueen are sitting out the season.

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