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06 Phoebe Philo ***New***

Creative director, Céline

Crisp white shirts, camel coats and simple, easy tailoring. All sounds a bit dull for the fashion industry, but in contrast to last year’s sharp shoulders and body-con silhouettes courtesy of French fashion house Balmain, 2010 has been the year when women’s fashion became wearable - for all women.

And thanks goes to Phoebe Philo, whose move from Chloe to Céline - with some time off in between with her family - was much anticipated by the fashion press. Her first collection for spring 10 was applauded by fashion editors and, arguably, boosted the profiles of similar-minded, less well-known designers like Isabel Marant and Vanessa Bruno.

Philo’s innate understanding of how women like to dress and her pared-down aesthetic - matched by excellent pattern-cutting skills - went further than the international catwalks; the minimalism trend was born and found its way into the wardrobes of most 30-something women. The look played into the hands of mainstream and premium womenswear retailers, whose collections have been awash with simple, tailored pieces in muted tones. And there is no evidence the trend will slow down come 2011.

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