When designer Hedi Slimane was appointed creative director last year at Yves Saint Laurent, he upset the fashion community and loyal YSL fans who loved the fashion house for its rich history, innovative designs and glamourous look. He had taken the reigns from Stefano Pilati who had stayed somewhat true to the heritage, and disrupted what had been business as usual. His first spark to outrage was changing the name, cutting out Yves and rebranding it Saint Laurent Paris. The name change affected the house itself and the fashion label. YSL Beauty retained its name.
What followed was a disappointing first runway collection. One negative review from New York Times fashion critic Cathy Horyn, and Slimane had her banned from attending the next show (the jury's still out on whether she'll be asked to return). The spring collection that followed caused a major stir, turning the history of the house on its ear and invigorating a dirty, grunge, thrift store-esque aesthetic. Courtney Love and Marilyn Manson front some of the campaign images.
Earlier this week model Cara Delevingne posted a photo from the new YSL Beauty campaign shoot to her Instagram account, and the image is nothing at all like the current mood of the house. It isn't remotely grunge or thrift. It's rather glamourous. Granted, they kept the Y in YSL Beauty, but the aesthetic no longer matches. It might as well be another brand entirely.
With just this image, we're left to wonder what Slimane's five-year plan is for the Saint Laurent. Time will tell if he'll come into stride there, and if he cares about a cohesive brand message at all.
Image: @caradelevingne on Instagram