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Yves Saint Laurent

Yves Saint Laurent is that most classic and revered of design institutions: a Paris fashion house, but it is built on the work of one of the greatest and yet rebellious couturiers France has ever seen. The Open for Vintage Yves Saint Laurent collection celebrates this unique pioneer with pieces marking the history of his career.

Yves Henri Donat Mathieu-Saint-Laurent was born in 1936 in Oran in Algeria and spent a childhood creating paper dolls and designs for his mother and sisters. 1953 his sketches won first place in a competition for young designers and the awards ceremony brought him to Paris and to the attention of Michel de Brunhoff, the then editor-in-chief of French Vogue magazine. Brunhoff encouraged the 17 year old Saint Laurent to apply to study at the Paris based Chambre Syndicale de la Haute Couture. It was after completing this course and again winning the young designers competition again that Brunhoff saw more sketches from the budding designer. In these sketches Brunhoff recognised the talent and, more significantly, a symbiosis with the work of Christian Dior which he had seen that very morning. One introduction later and Saint Laurent entered the House of Dior. Gradually Dior allowed Saint Laurent to design for the couture collections. He said of Dior:

‘I couldn't speak in front of him. He taught me the basis of my art. Whatever was to happen next, I never forgot the years I spent at by his side.’

Dior seems to have been equally enamoured with his protégé, naming him as his successor in 1957 before his sudden death. At the age of 21 therefore, Saint Laurent found himself the head of the most revered and respected fashion house in Paris. He did not disappoint with his first collection, the ‘Ligne Trapéze’ a resounding success. However, it was after leaving Dior with a stint in National Service that, with his own label: Yves Saint Laurent YSL, made his true mark.

During his almost 50 year career, Yves Saint Laurent changed not only how women wear clothes, but also, how they buy them. The 1960s was a time when the youth rose and cultures and tastes opposed, blended and created a freedom in style and taste never previously encountered. A young designer, Saint Laurent was not only connected to but was an integral part of youth taste and interests. Unlike the grand couture houses, he was free to draw on his great loves for his designs during the 1960s and 1970s. Most famously, he looked to Pop Art, Op Art, Piet Mondrian, Picasso and non-European cultures such as Africa and China to inspire his collections. Most celebrated and influential were the ‘Mondrian’ dresses from his Winter 1965 which spawned a huge following in the mass market with its block colour and simple shape. It was during the 1960’s that he became the first couture house to create an entire pret-a-porter collection in 1966 which made his clothes accessible to many for the first time. It is often these Rive Gauche collections which are now prized as much as his haute couture work.

Yves Saint Laurent not only understood culture but also how women wanted to look and feel in their clothes. In the 1966 he created the iconic ‘Le Smoking’ trouser suit. It is still revered as a turning point in women’s fashion and was hugely influential on the sleek aesthetic of the 1970s to follow and contrasted perfectly with the femininity of his sheer dresses and blouses of the late 1960s. It also anticipated his infamous ‘Liberation’ collection of 1971 which looked back to the 1940's style of war time collaborators and drew heavily on the structured shapes and shoulder of this decade. Though reviled by critics at the time it is now widely applauded and seen as an anticipation of the 1920s, 1930s and 1940s inspired 1970’s style. Through the 1970s, Yves Saint Laurent continued to produce Rive Gauche collections of rich colour, opulent embellishment and ruthless tailoring. His Russian inspired collection of 1976 was admired at the time with capes, short frogged jackets and full peasant skirts. Today, we can see his vision through the Yves Saint Laurent vintage womenswear and accessories pieces in the Open for Vintage Collection. With everything from vintage Rive Gauche dresses and ensembles to vintage YSL bags, vintage YSL sunglasses, vintage YSL belts, you can find your piece from the legacy, small or great.

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Yves Saint Laurent Brown Leather Gold Toned Studs with Gold Heart Charm Belt

Style Keyword : Belts Earring Type : Stud Label 1 : Accessories > Belts,Accessories > Yves Saint Laurent Colour : Brown Gender : Female Dial Colour : Brown Mens/Womens : Womens specification : Brown, , Decade : 1980-1989
£362.79

YSL Red Leather Belt

Style Keyword : Belts Label 1 : Accessories > Belts,Accessories > Yves Saint Laurent Colour : Red Gender : Female Dial Colour : Red Mens/Womens : Womens specification : Red, ,
£220.00

YSL Vintage Snakeskin Effect Bib Necklace

Style Keyword : Necklaces Label 1 : Jewellery > Necklaces,Jewellery > Yves Saint Laurent Gender : Female Mens/Womens : Womens specification : Gold, ,
£400.00

Black Yves Saint Laurent Belle du Jour Shoulder Bag

Style Keyword : Shoulder Bags Label 1 : Bags > Shoulder Bags,Bags > Yves Saint Laurent Style : Revival Gender : Female Dial Colour : Black Mens/Womens : Womens specification : Black, , Size : M
£575.00

Silk Ruched Little Black Dress

Style Keyword : Dresses > Mini Label 1 : Womens > Dresses ,Womens > Yves Saint Laurent,Womens > Mini Gender : Female Dial Colour : Black Mens/Womens : Womens specification : Black, , Size : see description
£621.00

Yves Saint Laurent Summer Long Dress

Style Keyword : Dresses > Maxi Label 1 : Womens > Dresses ,Womens > Yves Saint Laurent,Womens > Maxi Gender : Female Mens/Womens : Womens specification : White, , Decade : 2010-
£324.16

Yves Saint Laurent Long dress

Style Keyword : Dresses > Maxi Label 1 : Womens > Dresses ,Womens > Yves Saint Laurent,Womens > Maxi Gender : Female Mens/Womens : Womens specification : Black, ,
£480.00

Yves Saint Laurent Inlay sweater

Style Keyword : Knitwear > Jumpers Label 1 : Womens > Knitwear ,Womens > Yves Saint Laurent,Womens > Jumpers Gender : Female Mens/Womens : Womens specification : Brown, ,
£150.00

Yves Saint Laurent Variation Cotton yellow flowers skirt suit

Style Keyword : Suits Label 1 : Womens > Suits,Womens > Yves Saint Laurent Gender : Female Dial Colour : Yellow Mens/Womens : Womens specification : Yellow, ,
£693.99

Yves Saint Laurent Cream Cotton Dress With Gold Trim - 2011

Style Keyword : Dresses Label 1 : Womens > Dresses,Womens > Yves Saint Laurent Gender : Female Dial Colour : Gold Mens/Womens : Womens specification : Nude & Neutrals, , Size : 40 (France) - 12 (UK) / 8 (US)
£500.00

Black Vintage Yves Saint Laurent Rive Gauche Dress

Style Keyword : Dresses Label 1 : Womens > Dresses,Womens > Yves Saint Laurent Style : Revival Gender : Female Dial Colour : Black Mens/Womens : Womens specification : Black, ,
£555.00

Nude Saint Laurent Moujik Top Handle Bag

Style Keyword : Top Handle Bags Label 1 : Bags > Top Handle Bags,Bags > Yves Saint Laurent Style : Revival Gender : Female Mens/Womens : Womens specification : Nude & Neutrals, , Size : M
£1,005.00

Multicolor Vintage Saint Laurent Floral-Printed Dress

Style Keyword : Dresses Label 1 : Womens > Dresses,Womens > Yves Saint Laurent Style : Revival Gender : Female Dial Colour : Multi Mens/Womens : Womens specification : Black, ,
£695.00

YSL Haute Couture by Goosens Brooch

Style Keyword : Brooches Label 1 : Jewellery > Brooches,Jewellery > Yves Saint Laurent Gender : Female Mens/Womens : Womens specification : Gold, ,
£280.00

YSL Double Chain Silver Necklace With Heart Pendent

Style Keyword : Necklaces Label 1 : Jewellery > Necklaces,Jewellery > Yves Saint Laurent Metal : Silver Gender : Female Dial Colour : Silver Mens/Womens : Womens specification : Silver, ,
£215.00

YSL Collar Necklace

Style Keyword : Necklaces Label 1 : Jewellery > Necklaces,Jewellery > Yves Saint Laurent Gender : Female Mens/Womens : Womens specification : Gold, ,
£330.00

Yves Saint Laurent YSL Goosens Vintage Gold Plated Coral Necklace, 1970s

Style Keyword : Necklaces Label 1 : Jewellery > Necklaces,Jewellery > Yves Saint Laurent Gender : Female Dial Colour : Gold Mens/Womens : Womens specification : Gold, ,
£675.00

Yves Saint Laurent YSL 1980s Vintage Gold Plated Cuff Bracelet with Logo

Style Keyword : Bracelets Label 1 : Jewellery > Bracelets,Jewellery > Yves Saint Laurent Gender : Female Dial Colour : Gold Mens/Womens : Womens specification : Gold, ,
£320.00

YSL 1980s vintage gold plated white enamel pendant necklace

Style Keyword : Necklaces Label 1 : Jewellery > Necklaces,Jewellery > Yves Saint Laurent Gender : Female Dial Colour : Gold Mens/Womens : Womens specification : Gold, ,
£150.00

YSL 1980s Vintage Statement Green Clip On Earrings

Style Keyword : Earrings Earring Type : Clip On Label 1 : Jewellery > Earrings,Jewellery > Yves Saint Laurent Gender : Female Dial Colour : Green Mens/Womens : Womens specification : Green, ,
£150.00

Yves Saint Laurent cotton black stars t-shirt

Style Keyword : Tops (Blouses & Shirts) Label 1 : Womens > Tops (Blouses & Shirts),Womens > Yves Saint Laurent Gender : Female Dial Colour : Black Mens/Womens : Womens specification : Black, ,
£358.48

Yves Saint Laurent YSL Black Silk Satin Ribbon Bow Evening Bag

Style Keyword : Clutches Label 1 : Bags > Clutches,Bags > Yves Saint Laurent Gender : Female Dial Colour : Black Mens/Womens : Womens specification : Black, , Decade : 1990-1999 Size : S
£1,095.86

Yves Saint Laurent Green Heart Pendant Necklace - 1980's

Style Keyword : Necklaces Label 1 : Jewellery > Necklaces,Jewellery > Yves Saint Laurent Gender : Female Dial Colour : Green Mens/Womens : Womens specification : Green, ,
£600.00

Yves Saint Laurent Vintage Blue Tartan Wool Jacket

Style Keyword : Jackets & Blazers Label 1 : Womens > Jackets & Blazers,Womens > Yves Saint Laurent Gender : Female Dial Colour : Blue Mens/Womens : Womens specification : Blue, , Size : Extra Large
£155.00

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