Tom Ford hired Pilati in 2000 as women’s design director for YSL ready-to-wear. In 2004, when Ford announced his departure and Alexander McQueen turned down Gucci Group’s offer to replace him, Pilati was promoted from within to replace him. Pilati designed both men’s and women’s wear for the label and while many of his collections were praised, others were not so critically successful. Likewise, Saint Laurent and Pierre Berge have both made their disapproval clear over the years. Rumors of his departure plagued him for years. Still, Pilati is credited with returning the house to profitability, creating hit items like the “Muse” bag and “Tribute” heel.