Maria Grazia Chiuri: Dior’s New Diva

October 14 - On The Dot
FIRST THOUGHT: The Elements of Style

I saw a quote long ago that said part of being a woman means going through a blue-eyeliner phase. It’s like a rite of passage. What are some of your past style mistakes? Pencil-thin eyebrows or butterfly clips? Using up a whole can of hairspray and sporting MC Hammer pants?

We’ve all looked back at high-school photos and cringed at those styles we thought were so cool. But it’s kind of fun to assess your fashion timeline and see how far you’ve come. Ever wonder what trend you’re sporting today you’ll totally blush about in 10 years?


It’s a long-held stereotype that women love to shop. Many of us are very into fashion, maybe not what’s in the new issue of Vogue, but we like to express ourselves with our personal style. So, it may come as a surprise that out of 92 shows on the Paris Fashion Week womenswear schedule, fewer than 30 have creative directors that are women. As if women don’t know what will knock people’s socks off. Get real! Ever hear of Coco Chanel?

WOMAN TO WATCH: Maria Grazia Chiuri, Artistic Director of Dior

Let’s balance out that unfashionable statistic with a woman who is taking her rightful place as one of the most creative women in the industry. Her name is Maria Grazia Chiuri, and she is a fashion-industry powerhouse.

The former co-creative director of Valentino, Maria is now the first woman to be named artistic director in Dior’s 70-year history. Talk about busting through the glass ceiling! In her new position, Maria will work on haute couture for women and ready-to-wear and accessory collections.

Decades ago, Maria began her career as a men’s designer, working for Fendi and helping the company become a global brand. Her aesthetic is modern, edgy and cool. And she embodies all those characteristics herself. In a photo published in The New York Times, Maria rocks black eyeliner, a black embellished blouse and a few chunky, hip rings.

That kind of edginess is Maria’s calling card, something she’s noted for achieving during her 17 years at Valentino. Take, for instance, Maria’s brilliant idea for red stilettos covered in “rockstuds.” If you’ve seen a celebrity donning a fierce ensemble on the red carpet, it’s likely Maria was responsible for the look. Chloe Sevigny and Tilda Swinson are two such fans of Maria’s designs.

Perhaps the most badass thing about Maria is that she believes a woman’s style can change from day to day. A casual, minimalist dress one day and a feathery frock the next? Maria says why the heck not? After all, fashion is all about embracing how you feel in the moment. Whatever your style, rock it, girlfriend!


When it comes to fashion, actress and style icon Katherine Hepburn got it right when she said:

“If you obey all the rules, you miss all the fun.”

This is Melinda Garvey signing off until next time. Remember, ladies, empowered women empower other women. Share On the Dot so more women can have a voice. Thanks for getting ready with us!

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