On arriving at the venue, it was completely impossible to enter due to the impenetrable volume of photographers and diehard fans. Once we finally pushed to the front of the crowd, we were once again held up as Carla Bruni arrived at that exact moment. The seas parted while she made her nonchalant entrance. She’s one of those quintessential Parisiennes; she has long represented that blithe je ne sais quoi and seems to hold the keys to eternal French Girl style.
Bruni is part of a long line of Parisiennes that can be traced back through such icons as Charlotte Gainsbourg, Jane Birkin, and Catherine Deneuve. We all know the image: relaxed yet polished hair, boyfriend jeans, a white tee or blouse, a jaunty bag, a little jacket, and just the right amount of make-up. They are envied and lusted after the world over. They break hearts and energize the rooms they grace. And, Hedi Slimane knows exactly how to decode that elusive cool. He turned his attention towards it this season at Celine.
Slimane’s set design was as spectacular as ever, with writhing robotic columns made from dancing LED panels screening cosmic patterns, then glowing and forming arches to reveal the first look. She wore washed jeans, a tucked yet open denim shirt, an impeccable navy blazer, white sneakers, aviators, and a just-right tan leather shoulder bag. It was Parisienne to a T.
Slimane knows that and, with his keen eye for detail, updated it for the 2020 woman. The silhouette had a little more room for maneuvering, it implied thrown-together and looked like the casual kind of bohemian outfitting that you see on the street and wish you could dress like. But nothing is really left to chance in Slimane’s Celine; he’s been building this for three seasons now and he’s really getting into his groove.
As the new young Parisiennes in the front row eagerly snapped away on their iPhones and saved their favorite looks, you could see their faces lighting up with glee — this is exactly what they wanted. Slimane had hit the sartorial nail on the head.