Well, this is certainly a game-changer: Yves Saint Laurent has just announced that under the creative direction of Hedi Slimane, the fashion house will be entering a new era, complete with a new moniker.
In the next few months, the legendary French fashion house will undergo its transformation into Saint Laurent Paris, a nod to “Saint Laurent Rive Gauche,” the name YSL’s first-ever ready-to-wear collection was produced under in 1966. The rebranding will first hit sales floors as the S/S 2013 women’s collection later this year.
A YSL rep told WWD that Slimane wanted to recapture the original “impulses” that led Saint Laurent himself to make his foray into the RTW world: youth, freedom and modernity. The rebranding’s aim is to bring the house back to its “truth, purity and essence.”
Obviously, you can’t make a big change like this without eliciting some strong responses. Saint Laurent died relatively recently (in 2008), and understandably, a lot of people are still very attached to the image of the man behind the label. Taking the eponymous brand’s name in a new direction has been met with a certain degree (i.e. a lot) of outrage so far. The Twitterverse in particular was blazing with anger, with big-ticket fashion players from Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week to Independent Fashion Bloggers tweeting their distaste.
“Yves Saint Laurent is changing their name… Not gonna lie.. I’m a little upset,” MBFW tweeted.
“Why anyone would want to name change the classic Yves Saint Laurent is beyond us […],” IFB opined.
We’re a bit torn on this one: calling the “YSL” moniker iconic is almost an understatement, and anyone with the slightest inclination to fashion is probably a bit attached to the fashion house’s name and logo (which, thankfully, Slimane isn’t changing). Then again, maybe Slimane is right — maybe it is time to breathe some new life into a brand that’s long been shadowed by its founder’s legacy.
What do you think: can you get behind SLP or will you always be a YSL type?
Connie Wang: “[Slimane] plans to drop the “Yves” and add on “Paris,” giving the age-old design house a strange, nearly luxury-sounding name — the kind you’d find in the back of a basement department store in Hong Kong.” [Refinery29]
Tales From a Bar Stool: “So, my vintage YSL just went up in value? ;)” [Twitter]
Shawn Chrystopher, rapper: “yves saint laurent changed their name to saint laurent paris. someone tell rick ross before his album comes out. im sure theres a ysl line.” [Twitter]
Eliza Grossman, assistant fashion editor: “I can’t quite wrap my head around the name change. YSL is among the most iconic brands that continues to dominate the fashion industry in terms of outstanding design and classic fashion. This is one brand I do not feel needs a makeover. However, I am curious to see what other changes will be implemented in the rebranding strategy.”
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