Extaordinary Fall 1990 Yves Saint Laurent Haute Couture Look 126 Purple & Bronze Silk & Lace Dress
This dress is from the Fall 1990 collection and came to me directly from the original couture client. In the book Yves Saint Laurent: Catwalk they said this of this collection; 'Yves Saint Laurent allowed himself to be truly audacious for this presentation of 137 designs. The Baroque style was evident in outfits were the a fairy tales.' Elle magazine summarized Saint Laurent's work as 'insouciance elevated to the rank of fine art.' .... and of the colours that he chose for the collection the New York Times noted that 'He works with a painter's eye, and the results are always satisfying, never soporific.' They also said that 'Lace is a cornerstone of evening dressing. Sometimes it is thick velvety guipure lace, sometimes spidery Chantilly. It never looks matronly.' This was one of the final dresses of the show and a beautiful example of all of those comments by the press. I am also very happy to have found the runway photo. With 137 looks shown finding this exact one from the handful of shots that are out there of the collection is almost miraculous. In addition to tall of that I have included a snap of the original sketch and fabric swatches from the boxed book set "Yves Saint Laurent Haute Couture: L'oeuvre Integral 1962-2002". The dress has so much structure and form to it but once on the body it sits just perfectly and transforms into something magical. It is an exceptional and well documented example of Laurent's Haute Couture work that he was doing during this time period.
A silk taffeta in a jeweled toned fuchsia sweeps across the top of the bodice and then extends down to form each sleeve. The fabric is gathered and ruched down the length of each arm. The shoulders are left bare to balance out the volume underneath and have that expanse of skin for a touch of sensuality. Under the fucshia is a wide band of a slightly metallic copper silk that goes from the top of the bust the the slightly dropped waist. The silk has been gathered along each side to create soft pleats that wrap around you. The skirt comes out from under that in a series of soft gathers that open up to allow it to be quite wide by the time it reaches the hem. The underskirt is made from a pale purple silk and that is covered in a top layer of French black lace. The lace is hand made and has a stunning floral design set within medallions. These are repeated throughout the lace to create the beautiful pattern that you see. I love that the bottom edge of the lace follows the curving shape of the design that is in the lace. To finish Yves wrapped a wide green silk ribbon around the waist. This unusual colour choice is spectacular when you see it all together and on the body. This is a spectacular example of his work and a piece you would only ever normally see in a museum. Excellent condition
Fully lined through the bodice in a black silk. There is a built in silk covered elastic that is attached and wired right between the breast for a slight bit of support and then that wraps around you and hooks to close. It closes with a side set zipper and has an inner waist stay that hooks to close. There is a series of snaps above the zipper that run under the arm seam. Each sleeve zips to close at the wrist. The exterior layer of the skirt closes with its own a hand set side zipper. The silk ribbon belt is tacked into place on either side of the waist. On the interior of the skirt at the inner waist the fabric has been folded down and it looks like it would be possible to lengthen the skirt from there by just about 4". It looks to have been worn very little if at all.
Sleeves: 20" from where they start off the shoulder
Bust: to 17" flat across from side seam to side seam
Waist: 13.5" flat across from side seam to side seam
Bodice: 15" from top of bodice to slightly dropped seam at the waist
Skirt: 38" from the slightly dropped seam at the waist to the hem
Modern Sizing Equivalent: SML-MED
Reference Photos: (1) Fall 1990 Yves Saint Laurent Haute Couture Runway Collection. / (2-3) From the book "Yves Saint Laurent Haute Couture: L'oeuvre Integral 1962-2002"
This garment has been professionally cleaned, pressed and is odor free. Thoroughly checked over before shipping, it will be ready to wear upon arrival.
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