Ten Loves: Christian Dior’s Bar Jacket
Only the greatest creative ideas stand the test of time. This is the case in music, visual arts, architecture and, of course, fashion. Imagine how difficult it is to design a piece of clothing which will induce excitement even 63 years after its original incarnation? Well actually, you don’t have to imagine. As their hero product of 2020, Dior’s womenswear department is re-introducing the Bar Jacket in honour of its birthday happening today.
It was on February 12th 1947 that Monsieur Dior presented the first ever Bar jacket in all its beauty – a cinched waist and soft shoulders, with basques and an open neckline accentuating the natural curves of the female body. Like any true invention, his New Look first shocked and perhaps even upset its audiences, before becoming the norm and changing the world. Until this day, the Bar jacket is a symbol of history and a pinnacle of style that transcends individualism and adapts to whatever space it exists in. And then there’s that photo – a model with their hands elegantly in the air, showing off the immaculately tailored silhouette by the Seine, as photographed by Willy Maywald. This will forever be the pose we revert to while roaming around Paris, imagining our second hand blazer is one of Dior’s original Bar jackets.
Ever since that moment, all the creative directors which came after the founder gave their own interpretation of the shape – Bohan, Galliano, Simons… Each offered their unique POV to this modular item, hence proving its capability of change. A new era dawned with Maria Grazia Chiuri, the first woman to helm the legendary Maison, as she gave the Bar jacket a contemporary female eye. In addition to the classic renditions in black and white, Chiuri also continuously explores the jacket’s potential with unique colourways, prints and of course the collaboration with artists Mickalene Thomas and Grace Wales Bonner for the Cruise 2020 show set in Marrakech.
The story of the Bar jacket will certainly not stop here, as it goes on into yet another decade. As strong and desirable as ever, it’s a little bit of heaven everyone needs to have in their world.
Dior’s re-edition of the Bar jacket is available to buy online and in selected stores.
Photograph courtesy of Associations Willy Maywald