It’s almost a decade since Yves Saint Laurent passed away in Paris, yet he and the house he created, are still amongst the most revered reference points in fashion. And this autumn two museum openings, in Paris and Marrakesh, and the death of his long-time collaborator Pierre Berge (himself a towering cultural figure in France) have made the designer a major talking point once more.
So Yves Saint Laurent Accessories, is a very timely look back at the shoes, jewels, belts and hats that were key to the YSL look. The book, encased in the designer’s signature Yves Klein blue, is lavishly illustrated with polaroids, sketches, catwalk shots and prints, as well as beautifully shot still life images of pieces in the Musee Saint Laurent. Author Patrick Mauries singles out key themes in the designer’s haute couture collections such as the exotic chinoiserie (that would also inspire his ground-breaking Opium fragrance) as well as the motifs that he consistently returned to, including doves and gardenias, hearts and crucifixes. But the book also illustrates how important Saint Laurent’s collaborators were from Loulou de la Falaise to the accessories designers who created the incredible jewels, bags, ornate belts and deeply glamorous fripperies that made the YSL look so influential.