Well, we can’t say we weren’t hoping Cathy Horyn would sound off on Hedi Slimane’s latest grunge-inspired offering for Saint Laurent, given their history. And today she did, reviewing the collection based on photos because, again, she was not invited to the show. After all, Slimane did write in his open letter that she would “never get a seat at Saint Laurent,” presumably due to an 8-year-grudge he had with the fashion critic over her supposed favoring of Raf Simons.
If the point of banning Horyn was to prevent a negative review, it didn’t work. In her final wrap-up of Paris fashion week yesterday, Horyn pondered fashion vs. labels. She posited that in his controversial decision to remove the “Yves” from “Yves Saint Laurent,” Slimane severed the label’s “connection to the founder, and everything he stood for, like good taste and feminine power.”
She went on to accurately describe the clothes: “Baby-doll dresses and flannel shirts,” and address others’ opinions:
Many people said the clothes looked like stuff sold at Topshop or a thrift store, while others defended Mr. Slimane’s approach and identified pieces, like a pink fur chubby, that relate back to Yves’s designs of the late ’60s and early ’70s, when he got ideas — say, for a pea coat — from the street. It’s doubtful that customers will make that connection, but such comments serve to validate what Mr. Slimane has done.
Pretty fair. She adds that “the controversy is good for Saint Laurent”–and then she lays in on her own opinion.
In terms of design, the clothes held considerably less value than a box of Saint Laurent labels. Without the label attached to them, Mr. Slimane’s grunge dresses wouldn’t attract interest — because they’re not special. But a box of labels is worth a million.
She goes on to list Hermès, Louis Vuitton, and Miu Miu as collections that were, well, better and more “worthy of their label.”
We’ll be monitoring Hedi Slimane’s Twitter account closely.