Some people are born to revolutionize the way of life. In the fashion industry, you will find numerous examples of such personalities who made the industry what it is now. If it weren’t for these people, we would have been limited to conventional, unimaginative, and stereotypical fashion. Many say fashion has been one of the ways through which we have tried emancipating ourselves from the shackles of orthodoxy—and all thanks to wonderful people in the industry who made this happen.
Keeping in mind what I have just talked about, I find it apt to talk about the man who changed women fashion for good. Yves Saint Laurent, the global fashion superstar, is the name that has been engraved in the hall of fame. His legacy remains as strong and creative as it was when he was alive, and this is reflected in the successes of his ideas so many years after his death.
Let us dive into the interesting world of Yves Saint Laurent and find out 5 facts about him you might not know.
- Once the brains behind Christian Dior’s designs
His calibre was undisputed and caught the eye of the Christian Dior, who hired him as an assistant. Following Dior’s death, he was appointed as the Creative Director of the namesake brand and was responsible for saving it from the brunt of financial distress. However, he got removed from his post following his conscription in the French Army. Disgruntled by what had happened, he filed a suit and won. Instead of going back to Dior, however, he decided to open his own brand so he roped in his long-time friend, Pierre Berge, and the rest is history.
- The Famous Tuxedos for Women
Arguably the biggest contribution of Yves Saint Laurent to the fashion industry was the introduction of Le Smoking, the quintessential tuxedo suit. He was always ahead of his time, and the introduction of these suits showed his determination to reform women fashion, which at that point of time, was confined to conventional dresses. Not only that, he would hire non-white models to exhibit his designs—a step that was very uncommonly taken at the time.
- The First To Be Honoured
We all know the place which the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York enjoys in the world of fashion. Every year it makes rounds because of the globally covered Met Gala event which is attended by who’s who in the entertainment world. It is this very museum that decided to honour Yves Saint Laurent in the year 1983, making him the first living fashion designer to receive such an honour. In that year, the Costume Institute’s exhibition was dedicated to exhibiting his creations.
- A Recluse Turned Into A Designer
Childhood was tough on our genius designer, as he faced bullying from his peers. The result of bullying was unsurprisingly withdrawal from society. However, while doing so, he found his calling. He began making designs for paper dolls and even staged shows with them. The more he designed, the more he enjoyed and ultimately he was no longer designing for the dolls. With time, he began designing clothes for his sisters and mother, and not long after that, he caught the attention of Christian Dior.
- The World of the YSL label is Huge
The brainchild of Yves Saint Laurent and Pierre Bergé, the Yves Saint Laurent label has become bigger and better with time. Following the death of the former, there were a lot of ups and downs but things were restored to normalcy soon after. Today, the label has established its presence in myriad fashion markets and has not restricted itself to women fashion. Its kitty includes ready-to-wear for men, leather products, footwear, and jewellery. It has also ventured into the world of cosmetics as well. So far as its international reach is concerned, it has a strong presence in Europe and East Asia. The brand enjoys a particularly strong presence in Japan. In the year 2020, Rosé from the iconic K-pop band Blackpink was appointed as the label’s global brand ambassador, the first global ambassador in more than 5 decades.