While pleated micro mini skirts, bedazzled logo bags, and bubble gum pink everything has kept a steady hold on the industry for the past two years, it seems a new side of the early aughts is rearing its head. Some may recall the 2000s also saw the dawn of an indie rock phenomenon that introduced all manner of edgy looks, like 1970s-inspired shearling coats and roomy riding boots paired with ruffled blouses and neck scarves. If your memory is still a bit spotty, Celine’s Winter 2023 collection will certainly jog your memory. Yes, the cheeky bubble gum pop aesthetic altogether that’s reigned happily these past years has taken a backseat to Hedi Slimane’s vision, which signals the dawn of new (old) era that’s grittier, glitzier, and oh-so rock ‘n’ roll.
To set the stage for the show (officially dubbed the “Age of Indieness” in show notes), Slimane chose the iconic Wiltern theater in Los Angeles for his latest endeavor. Celebrities the likes of Cindy Crawford (whose daughter Kaia Gerber walked in the show), Brie Larson, and Paris Hilton poured into the venue as classic treats like cotton candy, fries, and pizza were served.
The historic theater’s Art Deco design and Old Hollywood grandeur worked in perfect tandem with the booming soundtrack of The White Stripes “Hello Operator” blaring as models entered the stage in all manners of “cool kid” attire. Think of the Olsens in their early NYU college days: soft, buttery denim tucked into knee-high slouchy boots, oversized totes laden with statement hardware, and tailored military jackets thrown over boho blouses. All that’s missing is a venti Starbucks cup in one hand and a casual cigarette dangling from the other.
Speaking of totes, it’s worth noting that every bag brandished across the stage rivaled a carry-on suitcase, a not-so-subtle confirmation that the season of teeny tiny accessories could be coming to an end. And, similar to the oversized bags of yore, Celine’s iterations (which are sure to hit cult status in the coming months) harken back to the lived-in leathery Y2K styles, set against moody earth tones like cognac, chocolate, and coal. Quite a stark contrast from the cotton candy suede moon bags thrown over shoulders in 2022.
As the indie rock parade progressed, a slightly more polished angle came into view, as tailored separates like leather trousers and pleated slacks were paired with statement outerwear encompassing shearling toppers, sleek pea coats, swinging capes, and glittery cropped cardigan/jacket hybrids. Slung low on many a hip were thick leather waist belts while silky printed scarves were haphazardly wrapped around necks, hinting at even more throwback accessories entering the trend cycle in 2023.
The final leg of the show took a turn for the glamorous, ushering in slinky metallic gowns that ranged from ruby-colored, thigh-grazing mini dresses to floor-length, backless maxi styles held together by trailing strings and, likely, some strategically placed double-sided tape.
It was truly a night to remember, made even more memorable by the post-runway live performances by Iggy Pop, The Strokes, Interpol, and The Kills. If you thought the Y2K bubble was set to burst, you’d be sadly mistaken. Its still-steady run has been confirmed, but with a fresh, grittier edge, courtesy of Hedi Slimane.
View more of the highlights from Celine’s rock romp below. And be sure to dust off those slouchy knee boots hidden in the back of your closet. They’ve officially been revived.