They say history is doomed to repeat itself, but to simply say that Hedi Slimane is repeating himself would be trite. Indie sleaze has been the trend on everyone’s tongue recently, inspiring a social media rehash surrounding the hazy days of the mid-aughts. But nobody knows it better than Slimane himself, who curated and perfected the aesthetic during his time at Dior Homme, right around the time style icons of the era like Lindsay Lohan, Mischa Barton, and Kate Moss dressed as West Coast rocker girlfriends with a boho-chic twist. Slimane’s vision for Celine is incredibly singular, and, perhaps unsurprisingly, his world-building took him back to his fangirls in Hollywood after a hiatus from IRL shows.
The allure of Los Angeles is certainly not lost on the fashion set, as everyone from Gucci to Louis Vuitton and, most recently, Ralph Lauren have staged shows there. Maybe it’s the sunsets, maybe it’s the star power, but the undeniable pull of the enigmatic city has brought new life to collections that are inspired by both mega-watt celebrities and the everyday street style of Laurel Canyon residents. It’s no surprise then that an incredible mix of actors, musicians, and influencers descended on the iconic Art Deco-style rock institution The Wiltern on Thursday night to relish Celine’s latest spectacle.
Austin Butler and Priscilla Presley commingled with Kim Gordon of Sonic Youth, who has performed at the venue no less than three times, alongside Y2K legend Paris Hilton and of-the-moment girls Emma Chamberlain, King Princess, and Doja Cat. The Wiltern’s history is one that matches the entertainment capital of the world that it’s situated in, starting as a movie theater and ending up a concert hall-turned-historical landmark that has hosted everyone from Prince to Nina Simone and Amy Winehouse. Rock and roll was definitely on the agenda last night, as the collection, dubbed “AGE OF INDIENESS,” brought the best of Slimane’s vision to the city that inspires and creates stars like clockwork.
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All the usual rocker-flavored sartorial cues were present in the clothes, from prairie-style Patti Smith-esque looks with sharp tailoring to Joan Jett’s signature silk scarf and jacket combo. The models looked like the cast of The Bling Ring if they pilfered through Courtney Love’s closet. We thought the skinny jean death knell rang when Slimane showed ultra-wide blue denim a few seasons ago, but alas, they refuse to be buried. Skin-tight denim was tucked into knee-high slouchy leather boots, and almost every model carried an oversized handbag. It was essentially a highlight reel of Jenny Humphrey’s wardrobe on the OG Gossip Girl, with low-slung belts on gauzy floral dresses, cardigan jackets adorned with massive embellishments, and stacks of long gold chains paired with delicate scarves.
The series of finale dresses embodied the excess of the rock-and-roll lifestyle, from a mini feathered cape with a crystal choker to Kaia Gerber’s delightful gold mini dress fit for dancing until the sunrise reflects off the sequins. The finale look, worn by frequent Celine muse Lulu Tenney, was Slimane’s take on the Celine bride, ready to walk down the aisle of a late-night party, cigarette in tow, mascara smudged. Maybe she’s headed to the altar. But in this fairytale, the altar is the stage: the after-show featured an epic lineup comprised of Iggy Pop, The Strokes, The Kills, and Interpol, ushering in a long, bleary-eyed night of dancing, champagne, and lots and lots of unapologetic glamour, L.A. style.
Kevin LeBlanc is the Fashion Associate at ELLE Magazine. He covers fashion news, trends, and anything to do with Robyn Rihanna Fenty.