‘The Fabulous World of Dior’ Arrives at Harrods
Christmas has come early for Harrods. London’s most famous department store has just announced it will be hosting a huge campaign with French luxury brand, Dior, which will see both its interiors and exteriors transformed for the festive season.
The excitement begins just outside the store, where the Harrods historic façade on Brompton Road will be decorated with a new installation. The design comes from the sketches created during a conversation between designer Maria Grazia Chiuri and artist Pietro Ruffo for Dior Cruise 2022, and features the House’s signature compass rose at its centre. A large-scale sculpture (Harrods’ largest to date), measuring 17 metres, will also take up residence in front of the building’s dome for all to see.
Harrods’ 44 traditional Christmas windows will also be transformed into ‘small theatres of wonder’, with Dior’s visuals taking pride of place. Festive scenery made from gingerbread, sugar and caramel will sit in each window, intertwining with the narrative created by the Brompton Road installation. The windows will tell a history of the House, with an animated version of 30 Montaigne (complete with dancing Dior products), dresses from Dior’s archives recreated in confectionaries, and beauty products hidden among candy balloons and pine trees made from cookies.
Inside, visitors will find two new multi-experience pop-up boutiques, with decor inpired by Christmas fairytales and stories.
The first pop-up, a recreation of Monsieur Dior’s Atelier in gingerbread, invites guests to explore Dior’s legacy from behind the scenes. Taking centre stage will be the House’s signature leather goods accessories, like the Lady Dior and the Dior Book Tote, as they are transported across the pop-up by conveyor belt – a nod to the image of Santa’s workshop in the days leading up to Christmas.
The second, described as ‘an ephemeral gift shop’, is the destination for finding the perfect Christmas gifts for loved ones. A curated cabinet of curiosities, the pop-up celebrates Maria Grazia Chiuri’s first collection for Dior with a display of knit sweaters, loungewear, and a line of printed t-shirts featuring Chiuri’s socially aware vision.
Beauty enthusiasts will also be able to visit two ephemeral spaces in the store dedicated to Dior’s makeup, skincare and perfume lines.
Celebrating La Collection Privée Christian Dior, the first will highlight the history of the House’s couture fragrances, picking apart scent compositions and telling the story of each fragrance. The bottles highlighted – which include Gris Dior and Ambre Nuit – will form a tableau decorated with fairytale sketches created by Pietro Ruffo.
The second space will blur the boundaries between boutique and gallery, with an interactive display spanning make-up, perfume and pampering products. Highlighting Dior’s affinity with rare crafts, the space will feature a mini-trunk with the rare Millefiori edition of the Miss Dior Eau de Parfum inside alongside proclaimed ‘icons’ of the House.
A specially designed exhibition will take up residence in the heart of the department store. Titled ‘The Fabulous World of Dior’, the exhibition will explore the tradition of gingerbread houses through miniature recreations of Dior’s iconic locations – from Granville, La Colle Noire and 30 Montaigne, to the gardens tended to by Christian Dior’s mother. Highlighting the spaces that have defined the House’s identity, each scene is a fantastical retelling of the brand’s rich history through sculpture, animation and gingerbread (with a tiny biscuit Christian Dior working his way through each landmark moment).
And for those who prefer to wait in the café while their significant other raids the shops, Le Café Dior will be opening its doors with a tribute to British hospitality and entertainment. The new eatery will be nestled in a gingerbread tearoom (think Hansel and Gretel vibes), with Medallion chairs are dressed in iconic Dior toile de Jouy and tableware decorated with the House’s signature cannage. The menu, which highlights French cuisine with a British twist, will feature dishes like Cornish crab with green apple, roasted chestnut velouté with winter chanterelles, and a selection of gourmet sweets and Christmas desserts. Visitors can even grab a box of gingerbread biscuits to take home with them, shaped into miniature symbols from Dior’s archives.
To commemorate the event, Dior and Harrods have worked together on a new capsule collection spanning fashion, travel, interiors and jewellery. Highlights include a reinvention of the House’s signature menswear pieces in Harrods’ emblematic green, leather goods branded with the CD Diamond logo, and a table centrepiece from Dior Maison created in collaboration with painter and sculptress Joy de Rohan Chabot. Dior Fine Jewellery will also be unveiling new designs by Victoire de Castellane for La Rose Dior, as well as a new Dior Grand Bal watch, which will exclusively be available at Harrods until the new year.
Harrods has long been on friendly terms with Dior, with the two often coming together for collaborations and unique displays exclusive to the store. The House’s founder, Christian Dior, was said to have been a massive fan of British culture, and was the one to kick off his brand’s long-lasting friendship with Harrods.
‘The Fabulous World of Dior’ will be open from 10 November 2022 to 3 January 2023. harrods.com
Featured image: Adrien Dirand