The French Fashion house Celine and its emblematic creative director, Hedi Slimane, hosted a show in Los Angeles this Thursday, December 8, at the Wiltern Theater. A historic venue, perfect to present the 2023 Winter Celine collection.
The show was held at the Wiltern Theater, in the Los Angeles neigbourhood of Koreatown, where we presented an invitation and a bracelet. A historical cultural building, an art deco landmark since 1913, the venue, known by Angelenos for its turquoise color has hosted all the big names, from Prince to James Brown, through Nina Simone, Bob Dylan, the Rolling Stones, Amy Winehouse, Patti Smith and more recently Madonna.
Under a large Celine sign on the facade, the theater welcomed guests into the lobby for a pre-show drink with a Celine candy booth, badges, pins, stickers, matches and lollipops.
In the crowd, a smell of leather, a slightly polished rock style, guests sipping champagne through a straw, wearing bold black lipstick, classic studded perfectos, black dresses, mostly short, lamé jackets, fox and rabbit fur, long but well-groomed hair, a touch of leopard print, leather leggings and dark glasses.
In the front rows, local hero, Austin Butler, the biopic Elvis star, alongside the sublime Kaia Berger, and the Crawford family and next to them, the rapper Kid Cudi. All eager for the 20 minute show to start, which kicked off to the track “Hello Operator” by the White Stripes.
On stage, a very Celine like collection, with a touch of West Coast, Laurel Canyon and Hollywood Hills, skinny jeans, shorts, pants and tight black leather jackets matched with some Fedora hats and soft leather or fringed boots. Next came the ties and lamé jackets, faux fur over denim, Parisian-style trench coats, red velvet jumpsuits and capes. The looks were all complemented with the brand’s iconic bags and black glasses.
The collection included menswear, which showed the fundamentals dear to Slimane, i.e. black skinny jeans, worn with a three-quarter length coat, a loose tie or a leather mini jacket and a pair of boots. Other pieces included gold or silver lamé jackets. Rhinestones and sequins were widely present in the third part of a collection on mini-skirts, suits, coats and glittering costumes.
The final chapter opened with Celine’s summer dresses, long in black satin or printed, a sublime black tuxedo for women worn with a large bow tie before the entire group of 13 models took to the runway in gold and silver lamé evening dresses, a nod to the golden age of Hollywood, to Marilyn and to bright and sunny California.
Once the show was over, guests were invited to return to the lobby, for some French fries in the shape of the Celine logo and pizzas. Guests could also head down to the basement for a drink in the glamorous gold bar, while Hedi Slimane’s star guests took to the stage. And the program was exceptional.
First to enter the stage, the unbreakable Iggy Pop, who turned 75 this year. Shirtless within two seconds, he unrolled his classics, including The Passenger. Then followed the Strokes, who came on the scene in the 2000s, around the same time as Hedi Slimane, and who were widely photographed by the latter. Closing the show were New York group Interpol and The Kills.
At 2 a.m, the Wiltern Theater was still almost full. A bit of sweat, cigarettes and firecrackers in the room, and black lipstick slightly smudged. The party was successful. Bravo Hedi Slimane.
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