It’s Official: Maria Grazia Chiuri Is in at Christian Dior!!!
Oh I can’t even explain how excited I am about this news! We have lived thru John Galliano being dismissed, yes old news. We lived thru Raf Simons what a painful experience that was. I was beginning to loose hope that one of the oldest and greatest global fashion houses in the world would not find the right fit for a Creative Director and now could it be true that we have the right person? The right head that can steer the Dior enormous ship thru the changing waters of fashion. I’m really excited about the choice and was secretly hoping they could lure her away. There is hope for Dior!!
If you don’t know who she is or where she came from below is picture and article that Vogue posted.
Christian Dior has lured Maria Grazia Chiuri away fromValentino. After many weeks of rumors, and the headlines yesterday that she had exited her role as co–creative director at the Italian house, the news became official today. I, for one, am pleased: They’ve managed to hire a very cool woman. I’ve spent quite a lot of time with Maria Grazia on Vogue missions since she stepped up with her design partner Pierpaolo Piccioli as co–creative director in 2007, and I can say she’s come to be one of the women designers I like and respect most. She’s an accomplished, extremely experienced professional, a mother, and a principled feminist who has all her ideas about life, work, family, and fashion cut down to the right size. She knows how a couture house works inside out (as Raf Simons did not) and how to run an internationally important women’s ready-to-wear and accessories brand.
Most of all, I like the quote Maria Grazia gave me about how she and Piccioli first came up with the romantic, renaissance, virginal mood which has turned around the fortunes of Valentino. More than a fairy-like fantasy, it also had a double-edged significance, she said. “It was the Berlusconi moment in Italy!” she declared. “It was terrible. I really felt we were strongly reacting against that picture of women.” She’s someone who deeply mulls over the meaning of fashion from a woman’s point of view. To really start inhabiting our lives and minds, design needs to be about something more than churning out a house style or rearranging its signatures in an abstract way. Christian Dior is a house in need of that.
Maria Grazia Chiuri is a person up to that bigger-picture task. After all, the refreshed vision she brought to Valentino with Piccioli, has, while being sensitive, been markedly uninhibited by slavish adherence to the past. One thing I’ve observed is that no one should ever underestimate her. This is a down-to-earth, friendly, and very modern Italian woman who jumps on her Vespa and scoots herself to work at Valentino headquarters in Rome, her home city. Although she and Piccioli started in accessories, first as a team at Fendi in 1989, and then at Valentino since 1999, they both went on to prove their ability to rise to the challenge of taking over both couture and ready-to-wear. In turn, they grew the business hugely. When Valentino retired in 2008, she didn’t speak a word of English. Already a married mother of two children, she studied at home at night, and is now fluent.
Before the news was confirmed I wondered: Would Chiuri really want to leave Valentino? Rome is her home. She’s married to Paolo Regini, who owns a shirtmaking atelier, and their son Nicolo and daughter Rachele are university age. Then again, much as her long working partnership with Piccioli has been a success, she might be seeing it as a case of “job done” at Valentino. For a woman who I’ve seen to be so energized by challenge and learning new things, and who really respects and understands every stitch of the way the people in couture ateliers work, this might be an opportunity she’d be ready to take.
After 26 years of Chiuri and Piccioli working together, this is the end of an era. I wouldn’t be so concerned about Valentino in the short term, though. The other person I’ve gotten to know well in my years of reporting is Pierpaolo Piccioli. He’s a very cool dude.
by Sarah Mower/Vogue