Imagine Mrs. Robinson in Valley of the Dolls, and you more or less have the measure of Christian Dior for Fall: gigantic back-combed hairdos, equally gigantic eye makeup, and the neat ladylike suits and dresses beloved of Kennedy-era America. It was a trip around what John Galliano called the "optimism and opulence" of the sixties, amped up with bright color, lashings of paillette embroidery, and Western hats.
Decidedly, though, this was Galliano in general-service mode rather than personal fantasyland. Chop off the heads, as it were, and what was left was a wearable collection that will be legible to all women who crave a straight-up injection of high-octane glamour as an antidote to gloom. It involved boxy jackets worn with A-line skirts and detailed with standaway collars and covered buttons; luxe minks and chinchillas cut in horizontal bands; Dior houndstooth checks bound with black patent edgings; a few rounded-off, overlapping mid-century geometric prints; and bejeweled bubble dresses for evening. Nothing, then, either to scare (not even the shoes, which were stack-heeled and supernormal) or to set new agendasbut simply a demonstration of Galliano's increasing facility for running up money-spinning ready-to-wear calculated to read across continents.