Paris Fashion Week – Yves Saint Laurent Fall 2011

Stefano Pilati has had his fair share of criticism as the designer for Yves Saint Laurent. But with the latest Fall collection the gossip hounds may finally be silenced for a bit.

Though the collection has details of YSL heritage it’s a new take for the house. As I watched the masculine inspired pieces I wondered what Betty Cantroux Yves best friend and muse might think about the tailored coats and jackets …her trademark look for decades.

Pilati spent a considerable amount of time researching past collections from the early 60’s through the late 70’s and gleaned elements from days gone by into one powerful collection. Pieces included double breasted coat dresses, Prince of Whales checks, along with belted mod dresses and palazzo pants that rang of seventies poshness.

The looks ran the gamut from menswear to Bianca Jagger Studio 54 fabulousness made modern. There were capes, skirts, chiffons, sequins, jumpsuits etc and the final looks were so spectacular especially the marabou with the sheer blouse and palazzo pants.

All capped with a slick heavy side part swept into little chignon like knots by Guido Palau. The makeup was of course brilliantly executed by Pat McGrath and team initially the lips were a gorgeous shade of purple but after seeing the test with different hair colors McGrath decided that the lip needed to be changed. The results a nude matte lip that lent a modern and chic look when paired with the collection.

Womens Wear Daily had this to say about the collection:
Most importantly, the collection was presented with clarity of vision, opening strong with double-face Prince of Wales neatly tailored into coats, capes and suits with reverse trims on pockets and collars. In a nod toward Mary Quant, jackets were paired with pleated minis, cut spare and slim, and drop-waist shifts. One was done in slick patent leather with a cocoon back and a checked skirt with a blue hem. But Mod was not the point. Nor were cute schoolgirls, which is a direction that look can quickly go. It was purely adult, particularly when accessorized with thick, chain-link chokers and suede boots with a sculpted wedge that laced pertly up to the knee — both heavyweight chic.

The checks played throughout, blown up big on a boyish blouson jacket and alluded to on a chunky sweater and dégradé furs. Pilati got into and out of graphic daywear — black, white and gray with spare pops of color — quickly before his all-sportif, all-white evening parade. He made his point, perhaps a little too earnestly, with jumpsuits, whether slim and trim with a sheer ruffled neck or wide-legged and filmy. There were A-line skirts and tie-neck blouses, mannish pants and a silk gown, all accented with gold chains. One note, but very YSL.

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