Fashion has been waiting for some good news, and Phoebe Philo is here to deliver it. One look at the designer's confident, spot-on debut collection for Celine and it's clear how much we've missed her. At Chloé, which she left after her Spring 2006 collection to focus on her young family, she was known for her girl-friendly, effortlessly thrown-together aesthetic. Well, the girl has grown up. The Celine collection she showed in a bare loft space in Chelsea might better be described as woman-friendly, with lots of great-looking suits, chic cocktail dresses, and fabulous outerwear. (A cargo coat worn over a crystal-embroidered shift was a key look, and there were a pair of capes to delight the designer's longtime fans.) The more sophisticated, dressed-up vibe notwithstanding, these clothes are unmistakably Philo. First there's the color palette—lots of nude and black combinations, with hits of marine blue, navy, and utility green. Then there are the special details: the way, for example, a viscose faille top tips forward so the hem is higher in the back. "It's very subtle," she explained, "but it just looks right." Fabric development has always been important to Philo, too. "I love that it's a designer tuxedo, but it looks like sweatshirt material," she said of a marled gray wool silk jacket that was shown over a black charmeuse cocktail onesie.

"It's not about total looks," said Philo of her approach. "After my break, and with Celine in various different hands these last years, it felt better for me to work on an idea of a wardrobe than too much on trends. October will be for that. The collection is about interchangeable investment pieces. I worked hard to create things that will stand the test of time." Accessories are also under her purview, and in keeping with the sensible chic of the clothes, there wasn't a platform in sight. Instead, she showed ankle-strap sandals with sturdy mirrored heels and a smart pump-cum-bootie. As for the bags, the collection is large and ranges from oversize totes to classic envelope bags in crocodile or understated leather, the latter of which look like a good (read: reasonable) way for fashion fans to get their hands on the suddenly hot-again Celine.