If you thought hailing the return of the Saddle bag was Dior’s priority this summer, think again. As well as adorning the shoulders of fashion’s great and good with the equestrian shoulder piece, summer 2018 is all about celebrating the Oblique canvas.
Originally created by Marc Bohan in 1967, Maria Grazia Chiuri, the current creative director of the house, revived the canvas, because, she tells Vogueexclusively, “it’s the perfect graphic. It contains both logo and texture, both irony and seriousness, together in one. It is traditional, but at the same time has a pop sensibility.”
To give the house a helping hand, Harrods is hosting an Oblique canvas pop-up shop throughout August, with a window display covered in the graphic motif to entice customers in. An exclusive range of Saddle, Miss Dior and CD Hobo bags will be available to purchase, alongside a new line of Diorquake pouches, clogs and silk scarves. “The Dior blue canvas has been recreated in olive-green – the Harrods identifier par excellence – to provide a common fashion ground for the two institutions to come together,” Chiuri continues. Personalisation will also be offered for the first time to customers.
Chiuri’s favourite accessory in the Harrods capsule is the book tote. “It bests reflects me. I designed it in order to be able to hold the objects I value, like books,” she explains. “It’s made using a technique that combines heritage with innovation, and the way the Oblique is constructed means that the bag can be customised. It becomes an object that represents the person carrying it.”
Aside from the shapes that are emblematic of the house, each bag is imbued with the spirit of the youth revolts in 1968. “That famous French month inspired me with its desire for change,” Chiuri asserts. “Even today it exercises a power that reminds us to be ever vigilant, because no progress, especially that affecting women, should ever be taken for granted. I see what I do as not only designing the collections, but communicating ideas. I have a position of visibility and I want to embrace the potential that such a role provides.”
With accessories fuelling the profit margins of major fashion brands, does Chiuri feel under pressure to keep producing cult hits? “An essential part of my professional path is down to accessories… there’s a perpetual challenge of finding a balance between heritage and innovation,” she admits. “But when I work on accessories, I feel free to experiment in design.” With Harrods backing her products, plus the spirit of Marc Bohan and ’68 behind her, there’s no danger her “desire to create memorable objects” will wane any time soon.
This article was originally posted on Vogue
Minor changes have been made by the Quiet Curator editors.