Celine's Spring Summer 23 collection film begins with a girl on a boat. We can only imagine the boat is on its way to anchor in St. Tropez, where, to The Libertines' cult track When The Lights Go Out, Hedi Slimane's models are already marching down a concrete pier dotted with Celine flags.
The collection is titled Indie Summer, and with the nostalgic sound of Carl Barat and Pete Doherty's 2004 record acting as a backdrop, paired with Slimane's reintroduction of the original skinny jean, nothing could feel more astute. It is a renaissance of Slimane's 2000s era – one that was never quite left behind by the creative director. The first exit sets the scene. An emblazoned sailor's cap is paired with a striped sweatshirt and high-waisted military shorts. The model carries the newly introduced Conti Bag, a departure from Slimane's current fixation with shoulder bags towards one that sits in the crook of the arm or the palm of a fist.
When Slimane was appointed his role at Celine in 2018, he packed his bags from a decade in Los Angeles and settled in Ramatuelle, part of the gulf of Saint Tropez. It is here that he explores Spring 23, as he has done such in other areas of the Riviera during his tenure, it always returns to this. A feeling of confidence, freedom, and expression are conveyed as models stroll along the seaside, powerful in their looks and ready to attack life and its fullest possibilities. There are shin-high motorcycle boots in black, olive, and tan leather, contrasted with sparkling silver ballet flats that are paired with skinny jeans – a combination that will never not hark back to early 2000s nights out.
There are leather waistcoats layered over long poplin shirts, low rise belted skirts, and exposed string bikini tops underneath open cardigans. The era makes sense to reference in many ways. Slimane was, after all, a couturier of many in the rock scene, including Barat and Doherty, as well as a portraitist for many of them. It is also of the current moment, as we crawl towards the 20-year cyclical revisitation of trends from the decade, Slimane keeps his finger directly on the pulse at all times. Welcome back, indie sleaze.
Watch the full Celine Spring Summer 23 collection film by Hedi Slimane, below.