The Stylish Love Affair of Diana and the Classic Lady Dior
Accessories, Luxury

The Stylish Love Affair of Diana and the Classic Lady Dior

The Stylish Love Affair of Diana and the Classic Lady Dior

The Crown fever has caught up to all of us. Diana’s timeless looks will surely evoke nostalgia if you are one of those who devotedly binge-watched the Netflix drama. Her majestic outfits and accessories create visuals that even non-fashion enthusiasts will soak in and relish. It is like the 90s all over again. Amidst all this hype, the Lady Dior Bag, an iconic Christian Dior accessory made popular by the princess, has made rounds again.

The Lady Dior bag is a timeless accessory created by the French luxury fashion house Christian Dior. The bag wasn’t specifically made for Princess Diana. It was originally called the “Chouchou” (French for favorite or darling) when it launched in 1994. The bag went on to become one of the most popular and best-selling bags for Dior just a year later. Let us explore the story behind renaming the bag to the Lady Dior bag and what events made it so popular with the Princess of Wales back then.

Where did it all begin?

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While visiting Paris in 1995, the Princess of Wales was gifted the Lady Dior bag by Bernadette Chirac, the former first lady of France. While carrying the bag at the Paul Cézanne exhibition during her visit, she caught the world’s attention, with fashion enthusiasts remarking that the modern, elegant bag matched Diana’s personality and grace. Diana was impressed with the bag’s intricate design the moment she saw it. It was love at first sight.

The bag was unreleased and only in possession of a selected few when presented to Diana at the Dior-sponsored art event. The fashion house later renamed it ‘Lady Dior’ as a tribute to the Princess in 1996. Diana and the bag quickly became inseparable, making it an important piece in the princess’ accessory collections. During a state visit to Argentina in November of the same year, the bag was immortalized forever in a paparazzi shot featuring Diana getting off the plane in Buenos Aires. Diana even commissioned a separate bag in navy blue to match the color of her eyes because, in her own words, ‘it suited her well.’

A closer look at the bag

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Apart from the lores and the rumors, the bag can be called a work of art, deservedly. Since it launched on Lady Diana’s arm in Paris, the bag has amassed millions of fans worldwide. The Lady Dior is characterized by its quilted Cannage pattern, inspired by the Napoleon III chairs we see at Dior’s fashion shows. The original version has a supple design, with black lambskin, rounded handles, wide shoulder strap, and nods that spell ‘Dior,’ something that Christian Dior himself loved. It is a symbol of Couture refinement even decades later. In more recent versions, Maria Grazia Chiuri, Dior’s lead designer, has come up with models such as ‘All Up Stud,’ with punctuated studs playing with architectural lines, materials, and shades.

Over the years, many designers have collaborated and reinvented the classic bag through collections in a multitude of sizes, colors, and materials. For instance, the Dior Lady Art project, an initiative by Maria, collaborates with artists across the globe to reinterpret the iconic Lady Dior. The bag has been released in various sizes, from mini to large, and unique finishes from patent leather and exotic skins to limited edition metallics and velvets. The color pallet has also been upgraded from classic black to multicolor patterns and prints, reflecting seasonal trends and preferences.

Beyond luxury and Diana’s wardrobe choices, the story of Lady Dior is the transcendence of a mere accessory into a symbol of timelessness, which defined an era of amazing fashion. Over the years, Lady Dior became more than an accessory. The bag that accompanied Diana around the world left behind a trail, a statement of enduring elegance, mirroring the resilience of its owner. 

The Lady Dior is still one of Dior’s popular bags and will certainly see a spike in popularity and sales after the release of Crown’s final season. The legacy of the bag will forever be entwined with Diana’s legacy. The Princess used clothing as a kind of empowerment. The bag was a statement, a testimony of her free outfit choices that were bold, refined, and unapologetic.

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1 Comment

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