EMBROIDERER OF DREAMS Inspired by the movement and the colors of nature, Raf Simons put flower-women on the runway, their bodies sometin=mes embroidered with buds, petals, and bright, colored bouquets.

“Embroidery is one of the most beautiful of the worker’s creations – and one of the most difficult to carry off elegantly”, according to Christian Dior, in 1954, as he sang the praises of embroidered motifs on his dresses, jackets and coats. It’s a taste that’s shared today by Raf Simons, the house’s creative director. This past Monday, for his second Dior haute couture show, the designer showed flower-women sprouting buds of colored thread and bouquets of beads and sequins. There was the bustier embroidered with multicolored flowers; the long dress sliced with a ripple of pink organza fluttering with fabric corollas and petals; the incandescent balloon dress on which there bloomed a garden of threads, sequins and beads; not forgetting the coat whose inside, embroidered with pink and white flowers with black and green stems, opened over a bodice resplendant with the same motifs. Exceptional work such as this requires a very special know-how like that of the house of Vermont, acquired last July by Christian Dior Couture. Founded in 1956 by Jean Guy Vermont, and taken over in 1984 by its current creative director, Leonard Cione, today the Paris house continues the activity that, since its birth, has made it a leader in its field: creating embroidery for the biggest names in couture, and for Dior in particular.

Here, everything is done by hand, from the first drawing on tracing paper to the transformation of beads, sequins, silk and organza, for the embellishment of Raf Simons’ designs. The work is exceptionally minute, so that each thread, each sequin is in exactly the right place. Hands do everything. While the years pass, the technique remains the same: it’s all about savoir-faire and the passion inherent in a craft that’s brought these ateliers to glorious life for over twenty years.

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