Celine opened its Spring 2019 show, and everyone gasped.
Recap: Audience to the Celine runway for Spring/Summer 2019 probably needed a few minutes to understand what show they were looking at. Some would say it was an identical replica to designer Hedi Slimane’s previous work at Saint Laurent and Dior.
It’s no secret that Celine was looking for a change, something Celine most certainly got.
In 2012, Slimane disrupted the industry by changing Yves Saint Laurent to Saint Laurent, which changed the brand to a brand everyone would wear (see: Saint Laurent Signature Tee). Slimane told Vanity Fair: “It is interesting to see how much reaction this retro branding has created. Clearly, this period of the history of the house was not well-known, which I trust was a surprise for Pierre Bergé. I went back to 1966 – just before the events of 1968 [when 11 million workers revolted against the conservative politics of then-President Charles de Gaulle], but the awakening of youth was in the air, and Yves Saint Laurent wanted to dissociate himself from the clientele of haute couture and embrace this new generation.”
At Saint Laurent, he managed to maintain both hype and commercial success with the changes he made. Whether he can do it again with Celine, remains to be seen. It sure worked at Saint Laurent. No doubt about it. Celine and Hedi Slimane got a lot of press the last couple of weeks, good and bad. We will soon find out if the saying “all PR is good PR” is accurate.