Are the rumours about chic French label Céline true?
Philo exits stage right
When Paris-born British designer Phoebe Philo was appointed to the top design role of the fabled French fashion brand back in 2008, she was tasked with bringing her signature minimalist design aesthetic to reinvigorate the label after it had lost its identity and relevancy. And did she ever deliver. Her first ready-to-wear collection for the house, Spring/Summer 2010, received huge acclaim and put the label firmly back on the style map.
Since then Philo has elevated the label year after year, collection after collection, turning it back into the covetable must-have fashion and luxe leather goods brand it started out as when it launched way back in 1945.
During her time at Céline, Philo has been recognised for her incredible work with a slew of the high profile fashion awards including International Designer of the Year from the Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA) in 2011, an OBE from Queen Elizabeth II and inclusion in Time Magazine's top 100 most influential people in 2014.
Philo is a true fashion talent and if she is looking to exit Céline it's major news for the label. According to Business of Fashion, LVMH (owner of Céline) is in the process of interviewing designers to replace Philo ahead of when she leaves the brand. Quoting an unnamed source BOF says, "The interviews have been going on for a few months now."
However according to the article an LVMH spokesperson responded to the rumours with: "We categorically deny any imminent departure of Phoebe Philo from Céline." But the use of the word 'imminent' may provide a clue as to the validity of the rumours, with another anonymous source telling BOF the expected exit date for Philo is "...by the end of the year."
Whoever replaces Philo will have huge shoes to fill with the rumour mill in overdrive for potential successors. Names that have been circulating according to BOF include Natasa Cagalj who previously worked under Stella McCartney at her eponymous label and Ilarai Icardi who is currently at Victoria Beckham.
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