Maria Grazia Chiuri found inspiration in the escaramuzas of Mexico for her Dior Cruise 2019 show. In the 1950s, the women riders broke the glass ceiling of the charreada – a Mexican form of rodeo – by forming an all-female team, who took on the sport traditionally reserved for men and did it in full skirts, bright colours and big hats. “In a way the shape is really Dior,” Chiuri reflected, explaining how she’d fused the 1950s silhouette of the maison with the signature vibrancy and embellishment of the escaramuzas
An hour outside of Paris, Chantilly is known for its chateau, whipped vanilla cream, traditional lace, and equestrian facilities. Chiuri drew on at least two of those trademarks, modernising Chantilly lace in light and sporty renderings – some interweaved with leather – as she took out the riding course for her rodeo extravaganza with guest appearances by real escaramuzas on horseback. “I said, can I make you some dresses? They were very excited about that. More so than anything else!”
What started as a few raindrops as guests got out of the chauffeur-driven cars that had taken us to Chantilly soon turned into an aggressive downpour. The escaramuzas put on a brave fight as they took to the open-air riding course on their white ponies, while Dior’s PRs – some soaked from head to toe – never stopped smiling. It may have put a dampener on the after-party next door, but at least the rain looked great in the runway photos.