WHAT DOES HEDI SLIMANE KNOW ABOUT WHAT REAL WOMEN WANT? IT’S BEEN OVER TWO YEARS SINCE HE TOOK OVER THE REINS AT CELINE AND IT’S A QUESTION THAT STILL GETS TOSSED UP. NEVER MIND THAT NEARLY EVERY ONE OF HIS WOMEN’S COLLECTIONS FOR THE HOUSE HAS BEEN GROUNDED IN SOPHISTICATED, SENSIBLE PIECES DESIGNED WITH THE FRENCH BOURGEOIS (READ: DISCREET, CLASSY, COOL) IN MIND. CASE IN POINT: HIS SPRING 2020 UPDATE OF THE HORIZONTAL CABAS CELINE TOTE, WHICH DEBUTED LAST YEAR. THE ORIGINAL IS A SUMMERY YET ELEGANT CANVAS NUMBER LARGE ENOUGH FOR DOCUMENTS AND DAILY ESSENTIALS. NOW HE’S ADDED BUTTONS ON THE SIDES SO THAT IT CAN BE MADE MORE COMPACT (READ: IT’S EVEN MORE USER-FRIENDLY). SO IF THERE’S DOUBT OVER WHETHER THE MAN UNDERSTANDS REAL WOMEN: AT LEAST HE KNOWS HOW TO KEEP MAKING OUR LIVES (AND STYLE) BETTER – SOMETHING WE CAN’T SAY FOR MANY OF THE WORLD’S LEADERS TODAY.
Celine by Hedi Slimane Horizontal Cabas Celine canvas and leather tote, silk midi dress and snakeskin belt, Celine
CALL IT IRONIC THAT A COLLECTION BY ONE OF THE WORLD’S MOST FETED LUXURY FASHION LABELS WOULD MAKE ONE REFLECT ON THIS ERA OF OVERCONSUMPTION, BUT THAT’S EXACTLY THE EFFECT OF PRADA SPRING/SUMMER 2020. JONATHAN CHIA HEADED TO THE BRAND’S PRESENTATION IN SEOUL IN JANUARY TO FIND OUT THE NEW LESSONS IN STYLE – AND LIVING – THAT THE ALWAYS-WISE MRS MIUCCIA PRADA WOULD LIKE TO IMPART.
LEARN THE ART OF REFINEMENT: Instead of constantly seeking the new and encouraging a culture of overabundance and disposability, focus on keeping things pure, simple and elegant. It explains the collection’s clean lines, seen on everything from tailored leather skirt suits to flimsy knits and silk gauze dresses to even the cloche/bucket hat hybrid that accents several of the 51 looks. Makes mixing and matching easier too, we say.
VALUE THE PAST: The collection’s silhouettes are streamlined adaptations of those from the perennially chic ’20s, ’70s and ’90s for a sense of timelessness and newness at once.
IRREVERENCE OVER GIMMICK: How to toe this fine line? Miuccia Prada’s solution this season came in the form of fun accessories with a tactile, down-to-earth quality that felt unexpected without being outre – from macrame totes to knitted earrings to leather bucket bags with a touch of rope.
THE PERSON SHOULD BE MORE IMPORTANT THAN THE CLOTHES: Style, says Mrs Prada, all boils down to how one interprets and wears the pieces in her wardrobe. Eradicating stereotypical notions of dressing, she contrasts multiple textures on a single garment (think raw-edged leather with pretty sequins), then – as seen on the runway – encourages the unlikeliest of pairings.
A sensuous shoulder-baring cocktail top with a strict pencil skirt and solid platform pumps? Why not? A wildly patterned, tailored reefer coat (what’s a Prada collection without “ugly” prints?), necklace of oversizsed seashells and a rattan holiday bag? Bring it on. In this age of renewed feminism and too much of what’s often the same thing, a woman’s individuality and inner strength offer an elixir.
TEXT NOELLE LOH PHOTOGRAPHER VEE CHN STYLING IMRAN JALAL HAIR CHRISTVIAN GOH/ARX, USING REVLON PROFESSIONAL MAKEUP SHA SHAMSI MODEL EMILY STRECKIES/AVE