Hedi Slimane (Fashions Rebellious Rock Star)

who is hedi slimane

Hedi Slimane is a French photographer & fashion designer and is currently working as the creative director for Celine. He has worked in the past for Dior Homme and Saint Laurent Paris as their creative director as well.

Early Life and Career

Hedi was born in France in 1968. He discovered his love for photography at a very early age when he received his first camera. He also designed and made his own clothing as a young teenager. He studied art history and interned at a men’s fashion house. After graduation, he moved to Paris to pursue a career in fashion design.

From 1992 to 1996 Slimane assisted the great fashion designer Jean-Jacques Picart on the “Monogram Canvas” project at Louis Vuitton, this project recreated the famous LV Monogram canvas in celebration of its history. In 1996 he was appointed director of the ready-to-wear men’s collections at Yves Saint Laurent and later became the artistic director.

He later choose to leave Yves Saint Laurent and turned down a job offer at Jil Sander as the creative director.

Slimane’s big break came when he was hired as the head designer for Dior Homme in 2000. He revolutionized men’s fashion with his skinny suits and rock-inspired aesthetic. His designs were popular with celebrities and helped fuel the “metrosexual” movement.

Dior Homme

Starting in 2001 Hedi Slimane became the creative director at Dior Homme after working at YSL since 1996. His first collection debuted his signature skinny look. Hedi’s work at Dior helped increase sales and popularity in the men’s wear side of the business. Due to the popularity and success of his work, he dressed the likes of Brad Pitt, Daft Punk, and Mick Jagger. Slimane quickly became known for redefining men’s fashion and as an innovator in modern fashion advertising. In 2007 he left Dior because he wanted to work with women’s fashion.

hedi slimane saint laurent

Saint Laurent Paris

In 2012 Hedi Slimane became the creative director at Yves Saint Laurent which he later rebranded as Saint Laurent Paris. He stationed his creative studio in LA and you can see the Californian influence in many of his collections. Some of his most popular seasons include SS13 and SS16. He created skinny silhouettes and seemed to get influenced by past rebel rock and rollers with his black jeans and leather jackets. Many of his collections were met with critical acclaim but some did not do as well. For instance, in 2015 he showed a collection in Paris that was all about 90s grunge which didn’t quite fit the luxury “YSL brand”. Nevertheless, Hedi Slimane is one of the most important designers of our time and has been credited with bringing Saint Laurent back to its youth-driven roots.

hedi slimane celine


In 2018, it was announced Hedi Slimane would be the creative director of Celine where he still works now. His collections now are focused on rebellious youth (think TikTok) and in 2019 he featured his first standalone menswear show at Celine.

Slimane’s work at Celine has been widely criticized by the fashion industry. His first show received mixed reviews and was deemed “a hot mess” by Business of Fashion. Some people in the industry feel that he is not staying true to Celine’s DNA and is instead trying to turn it into his own brand. However, there are others who appreciate his edgy and forward-thinking designs. Some examples of popular pieces are his sunglasses, bucket hats, and hoodies. Which have all been seen worn by celebrities in popular culture.

Hedi Slimanes Photography

Hedi Slimane started photography at the very early age of eleven. He mentioned it was a way to refer to everyday things. His first photos were of deserted houses and broken branches. He then started taking portraits of his friends. When he was 19-20 he had to sell a drawing he was able to get from Keith Harring to be able to buy a Teufel enlarger. He did all of his printing in a darkroom in a small laboratory in Paris.

Hedi Slimane’s photography often captures the raw and the real. His images are unedited and unpretentious, which gives them an authenticity that is hard to find in today’s world of airbrushed perfection. He focuses only on black and white imaging as that is how he learned to develop, he did say he has nothing against color images though.

Slimane’s work often focuses on everyday things. Fashion, the people around him, the places he has been, and his projects. He says he likes to take photography just the same way some people write in a journal.

Hedi Slimane’s Books

Hedi Slimane’s first book was published in 2003 and it was called Hedi Slimane: Berlin. This book is filled with photography taken by Slimane himself in Berlin. He has captured photographs of his surroundings, his friends, and the usual places where the normal unglamorous lives are lived in the German capital. These photos visualize the attitude of the young generation toward life.

His second book Stage published in 2004 focuses on the interlinking of music and fashion. He follows musicians like David Bowe, The Rolling Stones, Blondie, and more around the world to capture the stage.

His next book published in 2005 labeled Hedi Slimane: London Birth of a Cult follows the life of Pete Doherty. This book reveals the past 2 years of his life in photographs. During this time he faced numerous scandals, a band breakup, and a media frenzy while dating the supermodel Kate Moss.

Portrait of a Performer came next in 2007 when Hedi Slimane worked with the editors of Visionaire and V to deliver and photo journal of the provocative musician Courtney Love. Shot in New York in August of 2006 just before the release of Love’s latest record at that time.

Hedi has also released numerous other books named Rock Diary, Art, Fashion, and Work, as well as Hedi Slimane. All feature Slimane’s work as a photographer, artist, and fashion designer.


Hedi Slimane is one of the premier designers in fashion today, especially in menswear. He has been credited for making skinny jeans and clothes mainstream. He is loved by many because of his wearable collections. Because of this, he has created quite a cult following in recent years. Also, known as “Hedi Boys” on social media. He is the reason why rock and roll has a place in High Fashion.

Connor Goodale

Connor is the owner and chief editor of Archive Avenue, a website dedicated to fashion and lifestyle. Connor has always had a passion for style and fashion. He created this website to share his unique view of the fashion world.

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