Christian Dior, the French couture house, opened Paris Fashion Week on Monday with an in-person runway presentation that drew celebrities to the front row in an attempt to resurrect a sense of pre-pandemic glitz.

Jessica Chastain, Cara Delevingne, Monica Bellucci, and Florence Pugh were among the exclusive few that lined the runway at Dior’s haute couture collection for Fall/Winter 2021-2022.

“I’m just extremely glad to be in a room with people and gaze at incredible pieces,” Chastain said after the presentation, which she said as her first public appearance since the outbreak.

According to Reuters, designer Maria Grazia Chiuri wanted fabrics to take centre stage. The detail and tactile texture of the cloth would be appreciated by an audience in the room in a way that would not be apparent online or in video recordings.

Tweed outfits in a patchwork of subdued tones took the stage, from coats to headgear mimicking horse riding helmets. On a velvet and satin coat, models wore botanical designs. Long skirts adorned with feathers and sheer pleated long silk gauze dresses were available for nighttime outfits.

Fashion labels have been showcasing their collections in online-only formats such as short films in recent months. With vaccinations improving and lockdowns lessening, fashion is reverting to conventional runway presentations, mixing live audiences and internet presentation for the time being.

“We’re all pretty emotional,” Chiuri explained.

“The collection is handled by a large number of persons. We were delighted to create gorgeous films, but it felt a little impersonal. Everyone is ecstatic to see the show, be backstage, and share the experience with our clients, the press, and friends. We lost a lot of these human connections in the last year and a half “she stated.

The show was held in the gardens of the Rodin museum in Paris, inside a temporary structure covered in needlework created by Eva Jospin and executed by Indian craftswomen.