A FASHION SCOOP (SORT OF): Céline — the Skull and Bones of fashion? On Monday, the house held mini-shows for press, WWD included. In the past, Céline has closed such presentations to photographers, but sent out photos to run with reviews. Not this time. A quick check-in postshow to confirm the arrival time for the photos revealed: Shhhhhh!

One of Céline’s p.r. ladies explained firmly that the plan is to keep Phoebe Philo’s most recent design activity secret for a while. No reviews, no tweets, no phone photos (that means you, Meenal Mistry!). The strategy (one first tried and since abandoned by Tom Ford) is to hold off on all press until closer to the retail season. Alas, some of us are precluded by current employment from accepting entrance into Céline’s secret society. Hence, this word on another stellar Philo outing: A leaner yet still relaxed silhouette dominated the tight lineup marked by a distinct utilitarian vibe. This showed up in a mostly neutral palette of khaki, black and white, and bold D-ring and pocket details. While these rendered straightforward chic, a pair of transparent white dresses over loud underpinnings — one green, one purple — made a slyly subversive tweak on nurse’s garb. There were also rich suedes, including an ultrachic belted lavender shift and fabulous two-toned minks — one color coming and another going.

This story first appeared in the June 11, 2013 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.

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