YSL shock name change to SLP
It has been four years since Yves Saint Laurent passed away and he may be turning in his grave at the news that the decision has been made by the brand’s creative director Hedi Slimane to rename the RTW line to Saint Laurent Paris.
Designer Yves Saint Laurent and his partner Pierre Bergé founded the brand in 1962; the current logo was created by the graphic designer Cassandre. The YSL logo is strongly associated with the legacy of the brand, as are the double C logo of Chanel and LV logo of Louis Vuitton. It appears Slimane is making a huge statement in terms of his insistence on taking full creative control of the brand, but a spokesman for the brand insists his inspiration comes from the history of the label in 1966, when the ready-to-wear line was launched as Saint Laurent Rive Gauche.
Slimane has already rebelled against the usual traditions followed by other French labels who usually base their headquarters in Paris, basing himself in LA.
The full extent of the re-branding is not yet known. Hedi Slimane is working on new store designs for Saint Laurent Paris, but it is thought that the YSL logo will remain for institutional purposes. Perfumes and cosmetics bearing the name will not be altered.
The new name is a bold move, but the brand is no stranger to forward thinking since its inception. In 1966, Yves Saint Laurent was the first couturier to launch a ready-to-wear line. He pioneered trouser suits for women and was the first designer to use black models on the catwalks of Paris. It is unlikely the decision has come as a major shock to PPR, the owners of YSL. Indeed, it is thought that Slimane’s insistence on “total creative responsibility for the brand image” was one of the major reasons for the delay in his appointment. Whether his decision will be a costly mistake or a profitable gain is yet to be seen.