A wonderful new exhibition displaying a beautiful collection of the seminal designer Yves Saint Laurent came to my hometown, Seattle, this October. The Seattle Art Museum is host to this inspiring collection featuring over 110 complete outfits spanning more than 40 years of Laurent’s career. The outfits ranged Laurent’s innovative ready-to-wear collections to custom made couture pieces. YSL saved everything when he started his own fashion house in 1962, the collection features an amazing range of outfit sketches and fabric samples, giving an incredible insight into his creative process.
From the moment I entered the exhibition rooms I was enraptured by the details of the design drawings and how they translated to the beautiful pieces of clothing displayed on the mannequins. Wandering through, it was interesting to see how Laurent’s style evolved over the decades of his career. From the earlier structured, dark coloured pieces to the explosion of colour introduced after the designer’s time in Morocco.
By the end of the exhibition it does strike you how modern many of the outfits look and just how many modern styles draw inspiration or stem from Laurent’s work. Particularly, the androgyny of Laurent’s famous pantsuits and tailored tuxedo jackets. Fittingly, the last thing visitors are left with is the famous Yves Saint Laurent quote: ‘Fashion fades, style is eternal.’
Yves Saint Laurent : The Perfection of Style
October 11 2016 – January 8 2017
Images: Linda Shi and Claire Gatenby