Nearly 50 pixie-cut models wound their way through lush green mounds at the Dior couture collection, which showed this morning in Paris. Raf Simons's first spring couture show for Dior mixed delicate embroidery, asymmetrical gowns (like his most recent ready-to-wear looks), and layered suits. Fans of his oddball color combinations will enjoy the acid yellows mingled with icy blues, lilacs, blacks, navy, and hot reds. Simons again displayed his talent for mixing textures. One look combined matte, tomato-red pants with a shiny, iridescent cherry-red top, beige mesh gloves embroidered with poppies, and ruby-encrusted lips. Tiny, impressionistic floral appliqués dotted many of the dresses, which ranged in silhouette from nip-waisted ball gowns to embellished knee-length cocoons. Overall, the collection felt less referential to the fifties than the fall couture show, but the poppy-red dinner coat of look No. 13 maintained subtle nods to the modernism that defined early Dior. And despite high slits, sheer panels, angel-hair-thin straps, and plunging necklines, somehow the collection wasn't overtly sexy.
Despite all of the obvious red-carpet attire (looks No. 2, No. 8, No. 32, and No. 43, to name a few), we liked some of the layered pieces and pants — one of our favorites being look No. 16's delicate multi-pastel bustier above shiny gray trousers with a lavender racing stripe and pin-tucked seams. The shoes proved Simons's love of shiny, pointy heels, though we couldn't understand how some of them stayed attached to the foot (were they somehow connected to their contrasting tights?).
But the biggest mystery came from look No. 34, an elegant, strapless black gown slashed with a sheer panel that winds its way from the right bustline toward the front, just below the pubic bone and downward to the floor. Cherry-blossom-esque buds dot the sheer panel that snakes suggestively between the legs and raises the question "What is that shadow?" Given how prone celebs are to forgetting their underwear, this seems like a poonany sighting waiting to happen. Click ahead to see all of the looks from the Dior show.BEGIN SLIDESHOW