Monday, September 29, 2014

PFW: Céline and Givenchy change directions

Céline S/S '15; image source:
Phobe Philo has come a long way since her debut at Céline exactly five years ago. Her new-est collection for S/S '15 didn't have the usual addition of leather or wide belts; instead, it relied heavily on light knitwear and thin, almost neck-lace-like pendant belts which wrapped around the waist over a topstitched single-breasted coat or a structured V-neck jumpsuit in navy.

Let me be blunt from the beginning - not every-thing was equally successful. The body-hugging knit skirts with ruffled hems and slashed topcoats that opened the show get a pass as items which will define street-wear six months from now, as do the raw toilet paper-like tunics in black and white, but a geometric circle hole on one and over-embellished side cutouts on a different top felt unnecessary and gimmicky.

Backstage after the show, Ms. Philo said that she had a very easygoing approach regarding the design process and that there were very little ideas she turned down. That would further ex-plain why we saw T-shirts in navy and black more suited for a nurse and a banded krait inspired color-palette that was short on chic. The end of the show shed a light on floral dresses which are not news for the house of Céline (anyone remember the infamous Resort '12 collection copied to death by Zara?), but this time felt drab and very reminis-cent of Commes des Garcon's prints from around that same year. However, as polarizing as a Céline collection can be, one thing is for sure - it will sell like hot cakes come February.

That same evening a change took place at the house of Givenchy as well. The brand's creative director Riccardo Tisci, whose focus over the last few years has been on designing street-wear, decided to finally bring sexy back. Those of you who aren't familiar with Mr. Tisci's first five years of work for the brand should know that Givenchy was a lot more than dog-printed sweaters and Kim Kardashian endorsements - the collections were dark, romantic and sweetly perverted. Thankfully, the world has now a second chance to relive Mr. Tisci's heydays in a new, modernized context.
Givenchy S/S '15; image source:
The collection might as well be the sexiest one we've seen so far all season. The opening outfit - a dark navy Lolita dress with gathered sides and a corset-like bustier paired with thigh-high leather boots set the tone for what came next, and what followed indeed lived up to the expectations. What's most excit-ing is probably the return of almost couture-like embellishments which found their way onto achromatic topcoats and tuxedo jackets, as well as the brilliant use of intricate lace as part of distressed skirts and gladiator dresses. The message couldn't be clearer: Givenchy as we once knew it (and loved it) is back.

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