Fashion's Final Cuts

The old masters are aging, and the definition of a designer is changing

Bruno Pellerin / EPA

Galliano, celebrating his 10th year at Dior with models at his recent show, is one of the few younger designers with a high profile.

It's not every day that the Orangerie at Versailles is transformed into a bal des artistes complete with flamenco dancers, a gospel choir and a guest list that includes supermodel Gisele Bündchen, Spanish director Pedro Almodóvar and hedge-fund billionaire Steve Schwarzman. But this was the 60th anniversary of the house of Dior, and the resident designer, John Galliano, was putting on the glitz, while his boss, LVMH CEO Bernard Arnault, ensured that the fabled French house's high-end image was telegraphed around the world with all the rat-a-tat-tat of a flamenco beat.

Although Galliano, 47, was celebrating only his 10th anniversary at...

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