YVES ST LAURENT and Lyon’s fabric makers
"He knew so well about fabrics that he could make a dress with his eyes closed"
We visited a recent exhibit at YVES ST LAURENT’s Foundation museum which paid tribute
to the unwavering bond that the creator has maintained all his carreer with Lyon’s fabric makers.
Yves St Laurent was a designer of genius "who knew so well about fabrics that he could make a dress with his eyes closed"
We discovered with our guide that St Laurent started to display his talent at a very young age. During his childhood in Oran, he created a
wardrobe for paper "mannequins". At an early age he could already picture himself living in Paris.
He was quickly hired by Christian Dior and two years later, after the sudden death of the designer, St Laurent was chosen to become his successor. Being the youngest
creator at Dior, he generated envy among his colleagues. His success was immediate and shortly after he
started his own house. He maintained a close collaboration with prestigious fabric houses
in Lyon and this allowed him to present two collections per year.
The Cigaline, a transparent fabric made of synthetic and created by the Bucol House inspired his "mousseline"
transparent blouses. St Laurent also loved silk taffeta,
which was described as "light as a feather". He also used from the House
Bianchini Férier a silk crepe for his drops. The velvet was made by Bouton Renaud and
Hurel House as well as Beaux-Valette. The Abraham House provided him with the lamé quilts he used for his sumptuous gold clad bride outfit.
Each room is a tribute to these houses. Some of the dresses are made with 18 m of muslin.
We know this thanks to the technical sheets that accompanied each garment.
The information contained describes the fabric chosen, the supplier, the yardage,
the name of technicians responsible for the work, the name of the models , the
number of hours worked and the price for each piece.
We ended up our visit in a room dedicated to the
collaboration between Pierre Bergé and Yves St Laurent. We also visited the work studio where everything has remained in place. This allowed us to enter in the creator’s privacy and to better understand how fabrics were an integral part of St Laurent’s design genius.
The rich and shimmering fabrics we saw made us
dream and imagine how exhilarating it must be to wear these wonderful
We hope to see you at our next outing in 2022 which will focus on the world of fashion history.
Happy Holidays to all!
By Annick Sohier - Fashion World
Yves Saint Laurent Museum
"Les coulisses de la haute couture à Lyon"
©Bienvenue en France AS