Style insight – ‘LE SMOKING’

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Image: by Helmut Newton/ Saint Laurent

Image: by Helmut Newton/ Saint Laurent

“For a woman, Le Smoking is an indispensable garment with which she finds herself continually in fashion because it is about style, not fashion. Fashions come and go, but a style is forever.”

–Yves Saint Laurent

LE SMOKING, French shorthand for black tie, which is Yves Saint Laurent (Saint Laurent)’s iconic look and was created in 1966. The look features an androgynous model in a mannish three-piece suit (tuxedo suit, usually use wool and velvet) with slicked-back hair.

The look pioneered a minimalist, androgynous style for women. This smoking tuxedo suit was the first time for women to earn attention in the fashion world and in popular culture. And the look lets women have the option to wear clothes that normally worn by men, which give them influence and power. Pierre Berge marked that Chanel gave women freedom, Saint Laurent brought them power.


Saint Laurent | Fall Winter 2015/2016 Full Fashion Show

Hedi Slimane’s design for Saint Laurent obviously continued the Le Smoking look in his 2015-fall collection. But the look is in a more ‘cheap and street ‘ way.

Instead of wool and velvet, he used leather, lace, Nylon, mousselines and fur to complete his rocky look.

The hair is not at all ‘Manish’ but sexy the same as the makeup, especially the red lips created a look of bold sexy. Saint Laurent created a sexuality that rely on the perfect cut jacket and trouser, Hedi Slimane brings back the sexy of exposed skin and heavy makeup.

Somehow, he remained the main long and skinny silhouette, tuxedo suit and black color to save the main Le Smoking look.

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A back and forth movement around the world and finally I am in New York City! And all along, my curiosity in the fashion industry grew deeper.

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