In Pictures: The Fabulous World of Dior at Harrods
Dior has taken the wraps of a spectacular festive take-over at Harrods for Christmas encompassing an illuminated façade, dedicated windows, a café, gift shop and exhibition.
Running until 3 January 2023, the ambitious takeover is heralded by a monumental installation on the ornate Edwardian façade of the Knightsbridge store comprising Dior house codes, such as the compass rose, lucky starts and 'scintillating' flowers, reinterpreted by artist Pierro Ruffo for the Dior Cruise 2023 collection.
The central sculpture, referencing the Shepherds' Star, has been erected to an impressive height of 17 metres and is the building’s largest structure to date. Meanwhile the dedicated entrance to the store on Hans Crescent is crowned by a majestic forest of biscuit fir trees.
The compass rose, lucky stars and 'scintillating' flowers guide visitors through Harrods' 44 windows, stretching from Brompton Road to Hans Crescent, have been transformed into a 'theatre of wonder' with scenery made of gingerbread and moldings and details sculpted in sugar and caramel. The outfits were designed Dior's creative chief Maria Grazia Chiuri for the Dior cruise 2023 line.
There are windows dedicated to Monsieur Dior's Granville Villa (now a museum celebrating his life and work) and his atelier though which visitor's can explore the historic house's heritage. There is also a façade of a miniature 30 Montaigne (the house's flagship store and the site of its atelier in Paris), unveiled in an animated version, where Dior’s classic silhouettes and accessories dance.
Certain emblematic dresses from Dior’s patrimony – such as the Tourbillon, Soirée d’Asie and Junon models – are completely reinterpreted in confectionery and candy form. The Bar Jacket, the Lady Dior, the Dior Book Tote, and the Medallion chair – transformed by Philippe Starck and presented at the Salone del Mobile 2022 – are by turns spotlighted in the windows of the building.
The Dior Prestige ritual, lipsticks and fragrances – such as J’adore, Eau Sauvage, Miss Dior and the olfactory works of La Collection Privée – also appear in sumptuous exhibits, sometimes depicting a forest of pine trees made of cookies, sometimes a joyful flurry of candy balloons.
The Multi-experience pop-ups
Two pop-up boutiques have been installed in the interior of the store with the first, designed as an authentic gingerbread house representing Monsieur Dior’s atelier. Visitors are invited to enter the secret wings of 30 Montaigne, to discover the House and its creations in a behind the scenes tour, where they will see the iconic Lady Dior bag transported by a conveyor belt, among other delights.
The second pop-up is a gift shop offering everything from ready-to-wear to shoes and homewares. As a reference to Maria Grazia Chiuri's first collection for the house, there is a series of t-shirts featuring prints that assert the Creative Director’s socially aware vision.
For this festive alliance, Dior is presenting a brand-new capsule, extolling the silhouettes of menswear artistic director Kim Jones’ men’s wardrobe, combined with Harrods fundamentals. Within the exclusive space dedicated to Dior men’s lines, we find the signature CD Diamond logo, in all-over pattern on knitwear, reinvented in a deep green cotton canvas – also exclusively created for this event – and is sketched on items of the House’s leather goods collection, such as the Lingot 50 duffle bag, the Hit the Road backpack and the B27 low sneaker.
Also included are Baby Dior pieces conceived by Cordelia de Castellane, adorned with the classic Toile de Jouy, while Dior Maison will present a remarkable piece of work: a poetic table centerpiece topped with a candlestick – a creation inspired by the cruise 2023 line and its Rêve d’Infini motif – which continues the collaborations initiated with the painter and sculptress Joy de Rohan Chabot.
The Exhibition – The Kingdom of Dreams
Dior has conceived a unique exhibition – entitled the “kingdom of dreams” specially designed for Harrods – which revisits the tradition of gingerbread houses. Situated in the heart of the store, the exhibition reproduces the architecture of Dior’s emblematic locations – from Granville to La Colle Noire and 30 Montaigne – in reduced proportions. The fantasy universe is entirely composed of finely crafted gingerbread, punctuated with arabesques and delicate drawings.
Playing with optical effects and dimensions, this work – both miniature and grandiose – calls upon visitors to rediscover from a new perspective the landmark places within the history of Christian Dior. From the garden of his mother, Madeleine Dior, in Normandy – where, as a child, the founding couturier developed a passion for flowers – to the dream workshop where he drew his first fairy-tale dresses; from the Château de la Colle Noire and on to the ateliers where the collections were created.
In Granville, Monsieur Dior himself is rendered in gingerbread while at La Colle Noire, he tries his hand at embroidery, surrounded by the bees of “the little hive buzzing with activity” – as he affectionately referred to his atelier of seamstresses. In the perfume atelier, a scale model of the original Miss Dior dress comes to life, echoing the first Dior fragrance that has now attained cult status. On Avenue Montaigne, a mischievous fairy transforms a piece of candy into a Bar jacket with a wave of her wand.
Visitors must pre-book their tours here.
The Café Dior
Celebrating Monsieur Dior’s love of the art of gastronomy, the House of Dior has installed an exquisite tearoom that serves as a tribute to British hospitality and the pleasure of entertaining, which was so dear to the founding couturier. The tearoom is entirely adorned with gingerbread from the facade to the interior design and even the tiniest details.
The Medallion chairs are dressed in Dior Toile de Jouy, the patterns of which can also be seen on the wooden tables, while the lines of the Maison’s signature 'cannage' quilting design decorate the tableware. In a fairy tale setting, like the house in Hansel and Gretel, visitors can discover great classics of French cuisine and culinary specialties with a twist of British influence, such as Cornish crab with green apple, Atlantic lobster Thermidor and its yuzu vinaigrette, or a roasted chestnut velouté with winter chanterelles.
Those with a sweet tooth will be enticed to taste a selection of gourmet creations – such as tarte tatin or pear baba – and pastries reinventing traditional Christmas desserts, including a honey cake in the shape of a Christmas tree. As a final surprise, the House has created a collection of irresistible gingerbread biscuits reinterpreting Dior’s symbols: the Bar jacket, the Dior Book Tote, Saddle and Lady Dior bags, the compass rose, the J’adore perfume, the Oblique suit, the signature CD Diamond motif and even the 30 Montaigne plaque. Exclusively available at Harrods the treats are available to take home.