Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Review: The Fashion Documentary 'Dior and I' - The Value of Handcraftsmanship

Posted by Amanda Villaruel | | |
Stop reading if you haven't seen the documentary (and intend to see it). There might be some spoilers in here!
Review Dior and I documentary - Raf Simons
Raf Simons - creative director at House of Christian Dior

When I first heard about the documentary, I didn't care. I mean, come on - a fashion documentary?! Haute couture?! That is so not me. I read some reviews though because of the hype and decided to give it a shot. And also brought one of my girlfriends who I knew appreciated this type of fashion.
Dior and I fashion documentary at Gimle Kino in Oslo
At Gimle cinema in Oslo

This was the only viewing of the documentary in Norway, arranged by Aftenposten Kultur.

Tickets were sold out two-three days after they were released. The viewing was held at one of the finest cinemas in the city - Gimle Kino - that offers only high-quality movies and high comfort.

And a glass of fine white wine while you're watching a movie is mandatory ;-)

Once the viewing started, I was immediately sucked into the documentary.

It started with how Christian Dior managed to become one of the greatest fashion designers. Then we were thrown into today's presence, when the new creative director Raf Simons was introduced at the House, and his task was to assemble a clothing collection in two months.

Tick tack. Tick tack. Time flies.
A short presentation before viewing of Dior and I at Gimle Kino in Oslo
A short presentation before the viewing of Dior and I

The documentary took us through every step of the collection creation, even the hard decisions, the meltdowns and the harsh words exchanged at the House.

The most interesting part was behind the scenes and getting to know the people who made the clothes at Dior. The women and men who work at the ateliers, making everything with their bare hands.

Pieter Mulier (Raf Simons' right hand) didn't enjoy referring to them as workers. They were business women, he said.

You should have seen how they worked. It looked like art. It is art. Some of the seamstresses have been working for Dior almost their entire lives. No words can describe the process of turning a fabric into something spectacular, something that is worthy the Dior stamp.

The last 15 minutes of the documentary was about that final day. The day Raf Simons showed his first collection for Dior, in a house 'wallpapered' with fresh flowers (he got his inspiration from Jeff Koons). I got goose bumps when the onscreen camera zoomed in on Raf who couldn't hold his tears back while the models were on the catwalk.

For a second I was distracted by my friend who struggled to hold her tears back.

After the movie, me and my girlfriend sat down at a Italian restaurant called Villa Paradisio, and chatted about what we just had seen. Of course, this became the main topic during dinner and the more wine we drank, more questions were asked ;-)

The documentary prompted us to think about several things:

The people who make our clothes. The value of handcraftsmanship. How can young fashionistas who rely on fast fashion be more conscious about the clothes they purchase? Do people know what high-quality really means? If we knew who made our clothes and how they were made, would this prompt us to buy less because we value what we already have? Maybe we become more conscious about the next purchase?

Whether you're wearing a fancy brand, or a high street brand, do you think about the people who made your clothes?

Because yes, someone out there made your clothes no matter how cheap or expensive your clothing is ;-)

Continue to read: 
Sustainable fashion brands from A-Z. 

US-based Reformation that offers sustainable clothing to cool, chic gals.


  1. Definitely putting this on my must see list. As someone who has worked in the industry, I am constantly thinking about where my clothes come from and I understand why H&M doesn't cost half as much as Helmut Lang and what that means as far as quality and workers conditions. Great post.

    1. Thanks :-) The documentary left an impression on me :-)


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...