The woman is on a roll. In the span of three seasons, Phoebe Philo has established a vault-like identity for Celine, and spring was another collection banked. The precision sportswear that’s been crystallized as the house standard was more robust this season — the sharp lines sharper, the sportif, sportier.
After fall’s cushy bourgeois focus, Philo cast her uncompromising eye on a more populist demographic — blue collar — weaving traditional work wear and industrial references through her practical-chic lexicon. Apron pockets appeared on a stiff white halter and a leather tunic, and jumpsuits brought to mind coveralls with their boxy cuts and exposed gold zippers that appeared on the flies of pleated silk trousers. Hip-slung with a low-crotch, pants were one of the collection’s strongest moments. Some had a contrast waistband like dressed-up track pants, others were framed in graphic scarf prints in blue, green and red.
The prints, which also appeared on shirts, and two quilted judo vests, brought an Asian undercurrent to the mix, while a poncho and two crafty knits hinted at Philo’s former bohemian days. Yet this collection was far from mellow. Look at the white shirts, now a house signature, crisp and linear like folded paper. Some may be too clinical for most tastes, but during a season full of shirts, they felt distinctive.