With a clap of thunder, the neigh of a horse, and the clippety-clop of coconut shells on the opening soundtrack, it wasn't hard to see where John Galliano was going with Fall. Dior's ready-to-wear was equestrian-themed, a follow-on from the daywear strand of the acclaimed Couture show in January. After Karlie Kloss had swept on, swirling a brown leather highwayman's cape over a ruffled pink chiffon dress and brown thigh boots, the narrative was established: This was to be a brisk albeit slightly perfunctory trot around the circuit of Galliano's longtime favorite eighteenth-century redingote shapes, hacking jackets, and jodhpurs, interspersed with many more of the little chiffon dresses.
As the show took a detour into citified country clothes—checked wool pencil skirts, baker boy caps, and a blanket coat in mohair—it was the knitwear that ended up commanding the most attention. This is, after all, the season where unexpected ways of knitting have been a focal point in such influential collections as Prada and Dolce & Gabbana. Dior's answers were a cream oversize cardigan-coat, threaded through with blue satin ribbon, and two lacy raschel-knit dresses.
The whole impression? Item by item, there was plenty to go on, from the furs—treated to a new technique that mimics dressy layered frills, edged with an eyelash fringe—to the heavily reiterated thigh boot to the dirty-pastel georgette evening gowns. The drawback was the number of georgette dresses in the show, which tipped it at times too far in the direction of the things Galliano does in his own collection.