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L’Officiel Homme: YSL Officially Names Hedi Slimane New Creative Director, First Collection in June

“As one of the most important French fashion houses, Yves Saint Laurent today possesses formidable potential, which I am confident will be successfully harnessed and revealed through the vision of Hedi Slimane.” — François-Henri Pinault, chairman and chief executive officer of PPR, Yves Saint Laurent’s parent company.

LOfficiel Homme: YSL Officially Names Hedi Slimane New Creative Director, First Collection in June

Confirming a week-old rumor — ancient history in the age of the status update — that the designer cum photographer would return to the house that Saint Laurent built nearly twelve years after departing for Dior Homme, YSL today announced Slimane’s appointment as its new creative director.

Slimane’s return is described as an attempt by PPR to “ramp up” YSL’s development in order to compete with Chanel and Christian Dior.

As a Frenchman and someone industry insiders feel “understands YSL better than anyone else,” Slimane is expected to be received better than the long-beleaguered Stefano Pilati.  Saint Laurent, when he was still living, openly derided the designer while his business and life partner, Pierre Bergé refused to even acknowledge Pilati’s existence.

Despite his standing as the preeminent menswear designer of the past decade, this will be Slimane’s first foray into womenswear — aside from some feminine suiting he did for the likes of Nicole Kidman and Madonna. Slimane’s designs under YSL will debut with the house’s resort collection this June.

The extent of Slimane’s control over the brand is as yet unknown but famous for his exacting standards, there’s bound to be some upheaval in the coming months. [WWD, sub req'd]

Written by Lester Brathwaite

I was center square from 1969 to 1978, during which I perfected the art of the zing as well as a crippling cocaine addiction. Bea Arthur was responsible for both. @LesFabian lester dot brathwaite at gmail