Curator's Corner, 12/17/2011
What's all the buzz about? (Ghosts of Christmas makeup past, part 2)

Couture Monday: Yves Saint Laurent bow collection (Ghosts of Christmas makeup past, part 1)

YSL's 2008 holiday collection celebrated the designer's use of bows.  From the press release:

“One should always be tempted to untie a woman’s clothes” – Yves Saint Laurent

A symbol of femininity and the love that Monsieur Yves Saint Laurent had for women, the bow — be it demure or sexy, a velvet loop or a satin tie — has woven its way through his collections. Here, gracefully placed at the small of the back. There, tied around the neck in a protective, airy gesture to veil a lovely décolleté in transparent chiffon. Or just there, on the hip to highlight the endless length of a leg.

For the 2008 year-end holidays, the BOW COLLECTION reinterprets the symbol and pays tribute to the Couturier. With a look created by Val Garland, the sparkling, mischievous eyes of Coco Rocha are hidden behind a thick fringe of hair and her laughing lips are defined with an intense, plumping lipstick.

While not as stellar as some of their past releases, I did enjoy the shiny gold compact with a matte  bow on it:


With flash:


Too bad there was no pattern on the inside. 


Let's see, does Yves Saint Laurent really make use of bows in his fashion?  Indeed.  In searching the runway shows at, I don't think there was one season where bows didn't make at least one appearance.  Here are a couple examples.

Some dresses:

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And bags:

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And, of course, the iconic dress from 1983, which was the inspiration for the Esprit Couture palettes from fall 2007:

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Looking at those makes me think this holiday collection was pretty much recycling the bow theme, and not executing it nearly as well as the Esprit Couture palettes.  Overall, pretty meh.  It's been a long time since YSL has done a truly interesting palette - let's hope in 2012 they do something more creative.

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