I t’s been announced that Hedi Slimane will take over as creative director of Céline. While we’ll have to wait and see how much of Slimane’s hallmark I’m-with-the-band aesthetic will slip into his vision at Céline, one thing is certain: the guy’s got big shoes to fill.
Before Philo’s second show for Céline (spring 2010, wherein she managed to make dresses that were sack-like, both in shape and colour, look desirable), she said of her plans for the Parisian label: "I just thought I’d clean it up. Make it strong and powerful – a kind of contemporary minimalism." This strand of contemporary minimalism catapulted the designer to the top of the fashion food chain, garnering respect not only from Céline customers but from the general public, too, as we all keenly snapped up Zara’s iteration of Philo’s crombie coats, glove shoes, winged tote bags and more.
Here are some of Philo’s greatest hits at Céline. We’ve narrowed it down to just a handful, which was tricky because there are so many killer looks we could cite. Long may Philo reign, wherever she may end up next!
The new Céline woman was all about colour-blocking (mostly with neutrals, natch), cape coats and straight silhouettes – no frills, no flounce.
After a solid streak of plain-colour designs that prioritised silhouettes over snazz, Philo brought some prints into her SS11 collection, inspired by vintage foulards.
We first encountered Philo’s take on the classic Crombie coat in her Resort 2010 collection, presented in her favourite camel tone. But for AW11 the coat came pumped up in vibrant orange as an unexpectedly maximalist take on a classic.
Another departure from minimalism! And this time, Philo did it with blooming florals.
This stellar collection was inspired by brutalist architecture, with plenty of colour-blocking and boxy shapes going on.
Proof that comfort and style can sit alongside each other, Philo’s AW13 collection was full of pieces that seemed to be coats, jumpers, scarves and dresses all rolled into one, and presented in versatile neutral hues to boot.
Joan Didion became the unlikely new face of Céline, bringing on board a new fanbase of literary lovers.
For SS16, Philo reverted to what she does best: clothes for ‘real’ women (albeit with baller-level bank balances). Here came loose, dropped-hem dresses and modish white trainers to do the school run in, outsized logo-free handbags to take to work, and boxy coats for an effortless boardroom-to-bar transition.
While the sharp suit seperates, elegant beige coats and abstract prints grabbed attention on the runway, the real hero pieces of Céline’s AW17 collection were the oversized blanket scarves in punchy green shades.