Paris has been the capital of fashion since the 17th century. The city has been the playground of prestigious designers and couture brands such as Chanel, Dior, and Saint Laurent.
Today, Parisian style is not just an aesthetic choice but a philosophy that embraces elegance, timelessness, and slow, responsible fashion. The emphasis is on fit and quality materials. No frills or excess, with an approach where less is more. And what better way to understand Parisian fashion than to visit a museum dedicated to it?
The House of Dior has opened a new fashion museum in Paris in the utmost secrecy, recreating in the legendary mansion of Mr. Christian Dior, a parade of the most dazzling models of the famous House. 30 Montaigne, the original showcase of the House of Dior, has reopened its doors after two years of renovation. The 10,000-square-meter mansion traces the legacy of Christian Dior and the six artistic directors who succeeded him.
THE DIOR GALLERY
For over 70 years, the House of Dior has been creating magical couture pieces in its workshop at 30 Avenue Montaigne in Paris. Christian Dior has made this location a legendary address since the first collection in 1947. Behind its new flagship, the House of Dior inaugurates a permanent exhibition in an extraordinary gallery, independent of its boutique. Mr. Dior wanted to be an architect, and the building and the museum pay him a beautiful tribute today.
11 rue François 1er, the entrance is discreet. A few steps away, behind the splendid 30 Montaigne. It is a 2,000-square-meter scenography that overturns the codes of museum fashion under the direction of Olivier Flaviano, former director of the Yves Saint Laurent Paris Museum.
The staging is astonishing. From the entrance, an XXL round central staircase stages the brand-new Dior Gallery and brings together 452 dresses and 1,422 colorful accessories, miniaturized by 3D printing from bio-sourced corn starch. Bags, shoes, perfumes, and small objects: all testimonies of Dior style materialized to elaborate this Diorama.
Each piece is a unique experience in itself! In the very place where the great couturier set up his first workshops, the Dior Gallery unfolds like a living museum dedicated to the fashion house and the history of Parisian fashion. We stroll between Christian Dior’s office, preserved as it was, and a cabinet that displays miniature haute couture dresses sent to the house’s most important clients.
The Dior Gallery pays homage to Christian Dior’s first vocation as a gallery owner and art dealer. Old black and white photos show him with his friends Salvador Dali, Christian Bérard, and Jean Cocteau.
The Dior Gelrie is built around thirteen themes and mixes projections, photographs, and archive dresses in dreamlike settings. The hyper-contemporary setting designed by Nathalie Crinière is a pure marvel, starting with the entrance to the gallery, which was entrusted to British artist Marc Quinn, who was asked to create a work of art based on the fingerprint of the designer.
There are also rooms dedicated to the world of Beauty and Perfumery, including the history of the best-selling Miss Dior and J’Adore. The most iconic models of all the designers who worked at Dior (John Galliano, Yves Saint Laurent, Gianfranco Ferré, Maria Grazia Chiuri…) come back to life, all presented in front of a video of the show to make them more real and magical.
We then cross the silhouettes of the icons of femininity of all time, Marilyn Monroe, Charlize Theron, Lady Diana, Grace Kelly, Sophie Marceau, Natalie Portman, Nicole Kidman, Adele or Rihanna. A story of talents and passions that ends in apotheosis with this flamboyant finale, highlighting the most sumptuous evening gowns, among which shine many creations gathered for the first time in Paris.
THE CAFE DIOR PARIS & THE MONSIEUR DIOR RESTAURANT
The Dior Gallery also has its own Café Dior located on the second floor and accessible only to visitors – as well as a boutique with a selection of books on the house and stationery.
A few steps away is the Monsieur Dior restaurant, which is open to everyone and does not require tickets for the exhibition. Directed by Jean Imbert, this café and tea room offers a choice of cakes such as :
- the Etoile Dior with vanilla (20€),
- the Chocolate Tart (22€),
- the Vanilla Flan (17€),
- Citrus fruit tart (22€)
- Coconut with exotic fruits (17€).
It is also possible to have a “Tea Time” with a choice of a Hazelnut Soufflé (17€), a Vanilla Caramel, and Citrus Zest Millefeuille (16). All are accompanied by a hot drink, classic, or vegetable. Count 8€ for the coffee and 14€ for the Matcha Latte.