The Great Designers: Roberto Menichetti for Céline

Like any major fashion name, deluxe LVMH brand Céline has kept its A-list status by marketing the kind of must-have products that spawn waiting lists from Manhattan to Milan. But, believe it or not, when the first Céline boutique opened in Paris in 1945, its focus was on hard-wearing children's shoes. The woman's wear initiative was launched in 1959 and it took three more years got the famous three horse-bit to start to adorn shoes, accessories, and. of course, handbags. Ever since Céline finery has adorned the most chick ladies. In 1998 a new chief designer was appointed for the first ever womenswear line - the American Michael Kors - and in 1999 he became the company's creative director. It was his great leadership that made Céline renowned for super-charged, ultra-luxurious womenswear. When the private-jet set needed something to go with their diamonds, their first stop was Céline. In April 2004 Kors' contract came to an end and a new designer stepped into his shoes - Roberto Menichetti.
Menichetti was first discovered by Claude Montana and has an impressive career history including both Jil Sander and an artistic director role at Burberry. In February 2004 in New York was launched his own label, and his first collection for Céline hit the stores for Spring/Summer 2005. Menichetti has set tongues wagging with his experimental and streamlined vision of what the Céline customer should be wearing - a dramatic departure from Kors' glamour-puss aesthetic.

Menichetti's signatures designs are positive, creating the Parisian attitude to dressing a woman typical for Céline. His ultimate goal is to create something that women feel they really need, something that makes them feel modern and feminine. And he completes this goal with every single collection. This great man says that its difficult for him to say what he's inspired by because when he you look profoundly into things it's hard to pick just one. To him fashion definitely has a political ambition. An example is the 21st century that represents a bridge or a passage between the past and the future, the old era and the new, from a more rational time to a time of the senses and sensibility.

When asked what does he have in mind when he's designing he says that a representation is created by a succession of many things that somehow create an image. The artist believes in a dynamic life and creativity and therefore prefers the movement that a summary of words, images, symbols, etc. cam create. It respects the continual evolution of things. He believes a great change is needed, that it is time for an accelerated move forward in the world of fashion.

To Roberto Menichetti designing is not hard. According to his words designing for the future connects more with the five senses than rational thinking. The touch, feel, visual, smell and taste of things around us are important. All of these things combined, the sensation the these things give and more importantly the selection of these things will be the synthesis that creates style and this is what drives this incredible designer to continue.

Last but not least. My favorite definition of beauty I've ever read: Beauty is hope. Menichetti says that the most beautiful thing he has ever seen is the new generation that the children are now, how they interact with each other and with the world. 

"  There is always time for diversity."    ~ Roberto Menichetti

Here are my favorite pieces from the Spring 2011 RTW collection.




To see the complete collection click here.
Click the timeline bellow if you want to checkout the Pre-Fall and Fall collections.
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Kimmiepooh said…
Wow, I did not know that Celine was initially a boutique for children's shoes. Amazing what it's become in 60 years. Menichetti's designs for SS11 are beautiful. He took a minimalist approach (which a lot of designers seem to be doing nowadays), but his has a futuristic underlying theme that sets it apart. The images on the 4th row are my fave.
Sarah Throlson said…
Damn, Menichetti just found himself another fan. Those pieces are amazing.

Sarah | Kids Clothing Designer