Cultural: News, Travel & Trendsetters

Celine RTW Spring 2024

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Ah, to be young and cracking the books as a spring term student at l’université. Hedi Slimane channeled that magical moment with a collection called Tomboy that had vintage edge, and oozed youth.

Slimane shot the collection film in May at the Bibliothèque Nationale de France, and he didn’t have to travel far. The library, one of France’s oldest cultural institutions, is located across the street from the Celine ateliers.

Camera in hand, he followed his models as they strode past neat rows of desks, past artistic treasures and through the library’s vast book-lined halls.

He also filmed them walking with purpose across the cobbled courtyard of the building, which transformed from a royal to a national library following the Revolution in the late 18th century.

Wearing knee-high cowboy boots, chunky-soled lace-ups, sneakers or sturdy, shearling booties, models walked to an original soundtrack commissioned by the designer that featured an extended version of “Too Much Love,” performed by LCD Soundsystem.

Like so many happily zoned-out kids on European city streets, models wore leather headphones around their necks, part of a special Celine project with Master & Dynamic. Singer Stella Rose Gahan, whom Slimane has photographed in the past, also appears in the video.

Sunglasses were part of nearly every outfit, presumably to hide the effects of the previous night’s revelry, while the new Victoire bag, a rectangular style with a chain handle and the heritage Triomphe logo, played a starring role.

From start to end the collection was cool and collected, a look Slimane has been nailing since the ’90s.

For spring, his building blocks included roomy tailored jackets, some with patched elbows; boxy cropped jackets, flared jeans and microscopic minis. Some were pleated, others were plaid, while a leopard print one had a matching tailored jacket.

A vintage, make-do-and-mend attitude came in the shape of a cream slipdress with a crochet top; a fuzzy leopard print coat; diaphanous lacy blouses or corset style tops. The designer teamed those delicate beauties with jeans, or layered them under shrunken chubbies and tracksuit tops.

As always, there was a strong couture element.

An embroidered bustier dress, like a gold sunburst, was made by hand and glistened with thousands of sequins. The company said it took four artisans to hand-make a metallic mesh minidress using crochet and embroidery techniques.

Slimane paired the latter with an oversized black leather bomber, and tall boots. The outfit, though, was more the stuff of dreams than of a student budget.

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