Saint Laurent Takes a Trip to the Gritty Early '80s

Prom-style dresses, gold lame, a raised runway — there was all that and more at Hedi Slimane's fall 2015 ready-to-wear collection for the house.
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Prom-style dresses, gold lame, a raised runway — there was all that and more at Hedi Slimane's fall 2015 ready-to-wear collection for the house.
The finale of the Saint Laurent spring 2015 runway show. Photo: Imaxtree

The finale of the Saint Laurent spring 2015 runway show. Photo: Imaxtree

“HE DREW THE DIRTIEST THING HE COULD THINK OF.” That was the line printed on the opening page of Hedi Slimane’s inspiration book for Saint Laurent this season, which was filled with work by the artist Jim Shaw.

It certainly set the tone for the show, an ode to the gritty early '80s. Mini skirts stuffed with layers of tulle were worn with bomber jackets and tweed blazers, while a sparkling one-shouldered number was decorated by a massive, mesmerizing white bow. There were leopard and polka dot print prom dresses that reminded me of Betsey Johnson. And lots of gold lamé. Slimane even got in on the PFW boob trend by exposing one nipple on a black mini. Outrageous, maybe, but these clothes were entertaining.

It’s now generally accepted that Slimane’s jig at Saint Laurent is actually not a jig at all, but a slow dance that isn’t stopping anytime soon. The stuff is selling, and it’s also inspiring other designers. (Gucci’s new creative director Alessandro Michele has certainly taken a few pages from Slimane’s book.) You could feel the love for Slimane at the show. The front row — which was filled, per usual, with dozens of bold-face names, including Azzedine Alaia and YSL Beaute campaign star Jessica Chastain — were particularly happy to be there. But the rest of the audience didn’t seem to mind either. Maybe that's because Slimane designed a runway that rose up out of the floor of the Carre du Temple, making it easy for everyone to see the clothes.