Saint Laurent By Anthony Vaccarello Fall/Winter 2019
![Alt Text]() The period of the 1980’s remains an era of particular fascination due to a goldmine of style that provides designers with a limitless bounty for remaking that period of glamour and power. Designers dress into a contemporary wardrobe for a new generation who may have only seen pictures from the past, if they saw them at all. On an unusually warm Tuesday evening once again, a stage facing the Eiffel tower from the grounds of the Trocadéro now illuminated with a 3D light show as a backdrop. Anthony Vaccarello moved his Saint Laurent collection forward by returning to the vast forty years of YSL archives- especially focusing on the 80’s time frame as well as the shocking 1971 collection. This collection drew scandalous criticism with clothes centered around the 80’s most prominent feature – the big shoulder that framed wool coats as well as sparkling tuxedos and short evening dresses. The giant short fur coats, reminiscent of that 1971 couture collection, came out in various iterations – the black and white side striped furs and a short greenish furs that mirrored the original version. It has been more than three years and six shows since Vaccarello has assumed the creative director role at Saint Laurent. In general, the designer has polished his firm view of the glam rocker women rather than finding a new voice for the house within the framework of the YSL heritage. This time he seemed to have taken more risks in both assessing the heritage as well as how to adapt the strong fashion footprint to create a new silhouette and products. The first three looks of the show – a broad shoulder grey felt wool long coat with black satin pants and black satin blouse, or a camel felt wool military with a short black wool dress – set the stage for a collection themes with broad shoulder silhouettes throughout the show that moved the collection forward beyond the familiar glam of past seasons. This emphasis on tailoring, one of the legacies of Yves Saint Laurent since the legendary designer first to put women in pantsuits as liberation from male patriarchy, gave the show that spark of sophistication that was missing. This exemplified in a white pantsuit with large spread lapel and a black cumber bund around the waist. But for those customers accustomed to the very short dresses, have no fear. There are still a sum of super sexy micro dresses as well as some bloomer shorts looks to choose from. Red floral embroidered dress with puffy trims, black sparkling laminated long sleeve short dress or a simple black short sheath dress with silk polka dots bow show the likes of these looks. Just as there were still a good amount of hot pants shorts or even diaper shorts with furry blousons, pants made a come back in cigarette pleat pants paired with silk lame blouse. The menswear section of the show was the weak link, as the men’s clothes remained static with little evolution– namely the black slim fitted jeans still anchored the leather jackets, the coat, and the occasional beaded velvet blouson – garments that spelled success at retail over the past years but seemed to have outlived their fashion cycle. It was unfortunate that the menswear did not get the ‘shoulder treatment’ to bring the clothes on par with the women’s offerings. At the end, an entire segment of the show was done under black lights with models walking behind a glass partition so that only certain reflective parts of their clothes and their shoes were visible to the audience. It gave the show a push of edge into the night sky.
Photos courtesy of Saint Laurent By Anthony Vaccarello