Two Houses, One Gingerbread House

By Taylor Spill

Although the life of the elusive Christian Dior was short, the impact that he has on the world of fashion still lives on to this day. Dior not only created one of the most well-known luxury brands, but he was also the one that helped Paris become a fashion capital. Outside of his many accomplishments, Dior was known for his love for the city of London. One part of London that Dior was drawn to was the iconic luxury department store, Harrods; the love affair between the two Houses started in 1953. In addition to his love for London also came his love for Christmas: the holiday décor was a serious matter for Dior. Now, almost seventy years after Dior and Harrods first met comes The Fabulous World of Dior at Harrods, a Christmas decor homage to the life of Christian Dior as well as the House of Dior. Read more in Two Houses, One Gingerbread House.

Before the two houses met, Harrods got its start as a grocery business around 1824, founded by Henry Harrod. Eventually, Harrods purchased a small shop on Brompton Road (the site of the current store) in 1851. The storefront expanded and began to sell medicine and perfumes in addition to groceries. The original storefront burnt in 1883, however not all hope was lost. What saved Harrods from its time of hardship was, in fact, Christmas. Henry Harrod had promised to fulfil every Christmas order received, and with this kept promise Harrods was able to stay afloat.  Harrods was rebuilt soon after and eventually became the luxury department store that it is today. 

Just like Harrods, Christian Dior’s empire got a humble start. Dior started off as an artist, selling his fashion sketches and opening a small gallery. Eventually, Dior began to work for fashion designer, Piguet. This is where he discovered his love for fashion design. Dior took a break from the world of fashion to serve in the army in the 40s, joined the House of Lelong, and eventually branched out on his own. What made Dior unique was his passion for cherishing the ones he loved in his life. In fact, his iconic Miss Dior perfume was a tribute to his sister, Catherine, who was liberated after ending up at a concentration camp.

What unites the two houses, is in fact: Christmas. Although the holiday was significant in different ways to both brands (it led to the revival of Harrods after the fire wiped out their storefront and Dior enjoyed the decor that came with the holiday) The Fabulous World of Dior celebrates the relationship between the two houses, the life of Christian Dior, and the upcoming holiday season. Every detail in this limited-time exhibition-the façade, windows, and interior-turns Harrods into a Dior-Esque fairytale from 11 November 2022 to 3 January 2023. 

From the outside, Harrods is lit up with illuminations, meant to be a representation of the sketches from Dior’s 2023 cruise line. The sketches, beautiful and unique also can pay a tribute to Dior’s start through fashion sketches. The window displays are made of gingerbread, a classic English treat, to make the exhibition feel as if it is housed in a gingerbread house.

Inside Harrods, there are two distinct pop-ups and a café. The first unique pop-up is an animated gingerbread version of Christian Dior’s Atelier, made to feel like Santa’s workshop, as well as the other places significant in Dior’s life. This pays homage to Dior’s story, from beginning to end. The second is a gift shop, stocked with Dior goods catered for the wintertime, which can relate back to Dior’s love for Christmas décor. 

The walls of the Dior Café resemble the inside of a gingerbread house. The café, serving French-English fusion food is a perfect way to combine Dior’s French heritage, Harrods’ British heritage, and how they have worked together over time. The Dior Café, which is the last part of the exhibition is meant to be a way to wrap up the experience of The Fabulous World of Dior at Harrods while also adding an extra sensory element (tasting how Dior and Harrods come together for Christmas time). 

Overall, this exhibition is a multi-sensory experience and a tale of how two houses turned into one gingerbread house for the Christmas season. It emphasizes the importance that Christmas had to both brands as well. The fairytale lovers, Harrods and Dior finally had their happily-ever-after with The Fabulous World of Dior at Harrods.

To learn more about The Fabulous World of Dior at Harrod and/or to book tickets click HERE or go to

If you enjoyed reading Two Houses, One Gingerbread House why not check out Christmas Around the Corner!

Verified by MonsterInsights