Christian Dior unveiled his "New Look" collection to the world
Seventy years ago, on February 12, 1947, Christian Dior unveiled his "New Look" collection to the world.
In the late 1920s and early 1930s, Dior owned an avant-garde art gallery, which he had to close following family tragedy.
To make ends meet, he continued selling fashion sketches to designers (which he'd done prior to opening his gallery). Rather than work as an artistic director in an existing fashion house, Dior teamed up with businessman and textile magnate Marcel Boussac to open the House of Dior.
Dior set out to create a feminine look, featuring full skirts, a cinched waist, and rounded, soft shoulders. The lines were so revolutionary that Harper's Bazaar labeled the collection as a "new look". This restored Paris to the status of fashion capital of the world.
Still reeling from the ravages of World War II, cloth rationing was in effect across parts of Europe - King George VI of England forbade his daughters from wearing garments from the New Look collection.