If you’re into fashion, more precisely in the big names in fashion, you noticed that last month a piece of news took over the specialized news: the return of Phoebe Philo. After more than 3 years since leaving Céline, the stylist will soon be back on her own terms, aka, her own brand!
So the buzz was so much that they asked me a question, “Thê, why is this return causing so much fuss?, soon, your question becomes a post, thank you!
Phoebe Philo is a 48-year-old English stylist who studied at the prestigious Central Saint Martins, in London, and his first outstanding job was at the French company Chloé, as an assistant to Stella McCartney, until this solo career.
Then, in 2001 he took over the creative direction of the brand and it was 5 years of great success, albeit with the discretion that Phoebe values. The brand produced not only hits (like the Paddington bag, the padlock bag), but a fashion movement that we were certainly impacted in our quiet routines of a pre-blog and internet era.
It was there that Phoebe, in a considered act of madness, given her rising power in fashion, resigned to take care of her family and return to London.
There were 2 years of undercover period, until her return to a faded Céline and this was the big one turning point his career, the brand and also, why not say, fashion as we see it today. It was 9 intense years that leave a legacy to this day (they say that Bottega Veneta drinks from this water).
And that’s where the question comes “what does Phoebe Philo have?”, the that a super discreet woman, without social networks (I once said, “The coolest thing you can be is we don’t exist on Google?”) and away from the market for years may have been so resounding in your comeback?
That’s where the explanation of its importance in the fashion world is worth, at the forefront of a movement that inspires brands and has basic but blunt premises: minimalism + comfort + sophistication.
Phoebe has always masterfully pieced together seemingly simple yet complex items. And all after a generation more daring, exaggerated, nourished by logomanias, his Celine was discreet, cool, with clean lines and what was supposed to be just another ~lifestyle, became a movement.
For Phoebe, her clothes were less about showing off body and more about comfort, clothing was an object of well-being. And for those who thought her fashion wasn’t sexy… nothing, for her, sexy image was much more related to a woman’s power to dress and feel good than to her body on display.
Another highlight was the vision of a contemporary woman and neo-mother on fashion without being cliché, being very fashion even though 100% comfortable and discreet. All of this was due to the fact that her clothes were more rational, meeting the demand of her clients and not simply because the stylist wanted to create any kind of fashion.
Her pieces at Céline were always looking for a kind of “solution” and avoided any chronological line of fashion, movement or trend. The result? Atemporal and other brands thus began to reflect this new era.
Her feminism in fashion, on the other hand, was more forceful, albeit more discreet than a t-shirt à la “We should all be feminist” , the simple act of maternity leave, of being a “housewife” for a sabbatical period, says a lot about her power over her career. Although privileged, Phoebe always made that side of her clear and in fashion she always treated clothes with rationality and practicality.
Add to that, the sporty universe and the perfect marriage that Phoebe made with the tailoring, creating practically a style uniform for her client, always in a comfortable way, even if very (very!) luxurious. The stylist herself has always been an example of wearing basic black and her old white Adidas Stan Smith sneakers.
In short, her fashion was based on effortless elegance at a time when brands didn’t even try, when it wasn’t a real modus operandi and that has changed these days and thanks a lot to Phoebe.
Cut to 2021 and the fateful news that set the fashion folk on edge: in early July, the return was announced and Phoebe, now on a solo career, but with a minority shareholder, the super powerful LVMH, the largest fashion conglomerate and which owns the Céline herself, that is, an old relationship.
Phoebe’s idea is precisely to keep control of her creations, to have complete freedom of calendar, but, of course, to maintain financial support, after all, fashion needs that.
Now the most aficionados are already speculating what is to come. After 3 years away from the market, the world has changed and not only with regard to the pandemic, but also the way of life, issues such as sustainability, racial and body diversity are on the agenda, not to mention female empowerment and the way of life which brands communicate fashion.
Will Phoebe focus on Gen Z people or a more mature, low-key audience without social media? 2022 will tell and this will somehow reflect directly on our future dress, after all, Phoebe Philo has always had a great ability to anticipate what women want to wear.