It’s the news every Old Céline lover has been waiting to hear for three and a half years (read: the moment Phoebe Philo announced her departure from Celine, or Céline as it was then known.)
In a Business of Fashion statement released on Monday morning in the US and UK, it was confirmed the world-renowned British designer is set to return to the industry with a new label—her first eponymous brand—next year.
Phoebe Philo will be an independent clothing and accessories line of “exceptional quality,” though what exactly it includes has been kept quiet. Though we don’t know much, we do know Philo will be partially backed by LVMH, the designer’s former employer. The company, however, will have only a minority stake, allowing Philo to retain control and “to govern and experiment” as she sees fit, something that was essential in securing the deal, according to the news release.
Dubbed the “patron saint of dressing for the female gaze,” as the New York Times’ Vanessa Friedman wrote this morning, Philo’s eight-year tenure at Céline saw her make a lasting mark in the womenswear category, and become a pioneer in the casting of older models in runway shows (Philo famously hired Joan Didion to star in an advertising campaign).
With her meticulous eye for detail and understated design, Philo almost single-handedly paved the way for an entirely new era of fashion which many designers, such as Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen’s The Row and Daniel Lee’s Bottega Veneta, have tried to emulate in her absence. The Instagram account @OldCeline, documenting Philo’s time with the brand, boasts over 377k loyal followers.
“Being in my studio and making once again has been both exciting and incredibly fulfilling,” Philo said in the announcement. “I am very much looking forward to being back in touch with my audience and people everywhere.”
More information about what exactly Phoebe Philo-the-brand will be is promised in January. However, it is thought the label will be based in London, where Philo lives with her family. It’s also fair to assume Philo won’t be adhering to any of the old school fashion rules, such as designing to seasonal calendars. She’ll likely create small collections, and sustainability will surely be front of mind.
Welcome to Phoebe Philo 2.0.