C California Style

Looks from Slimane’s Fall 2016 women’s and men’s collections. PHOTO: Courtesy of Saint Laurent .
Looks from Slimane’s Fall 2016 women’s and men’s collections. PHOTO: Courtesy of Saint Laurent .
Looks from Slimane’s Fall 2016 women’s and men’s collections. PHOTO: Courtesy of Saint Laurent .
JUSTIN BIEBER skateboards outside before the show. PHOTO: Courtesy of Saint Laurent .
Slimane sent 93 looks down the L.A. runway. PHOTO: Courtesy of Saint Laurent .
Zoë Kravitz, Lisa Bonet. PHOTO: Courtesy of Saint Laurent .
Alison Mosshart, Joan Jett, Mark Ronson, Jamie Hince. PHOTO: Courtesy of Saint Laurent .
Elle Fanning, Dakota Fanning. PHOTO: Courtesy of Saint Laurent .
Rosie Huntington-Whiteley. PHOTO: Courtesy of Saint Laurent .
PHOTO: Hedi Slimane.
SAINT LAURENT held its first show outside of Paris under Creative Director HEDI SLIMANE at the HOLLYWOOD PALLADIUM in L.A. on February 10. PHOTO: Hedi Slimane.
Looks from Slimane’s Fall 2016 women’s and men’s collections. PHOTO: Hedi Slimane.
Looks from Slimane’s Fall 2016 women’s and men’s collections. PHOTO: Courtesy of Saint Laurent .
Looks from Slimane’s Fall 2016 women’s and men’s collections. PHOTO: Courtesy of Saint Laurent .
Looks from Slimane’s Fall 2016 women’s and men’s collections. PHOTO: Courtesy of Saint Laurent .

Ready to Rock

by C California Style

In Hedi Slimane’s ultimate love song to Los Angeles, the Hollywood Palladium plays host to a raucous Saint Laurent fall runway show.

The Left Bank met the left coast in a glam, grunge and bohemian heaven on earth at Hedi Slimane’s presentation of his Fall 2016 men’s collection and Part I of his women’s collection on February 10 at the Hollywood Palladium. It marked the first show the provocateur has staged in Los Angeles since moving here in 2008 and taking over as creative director of the house he renamed Saint Laurent in 2012.

Over the years, L.A.’s adopted son has made no secret of his infatuation with L.A.’s streets and beaches, where he’s discovered and photographed so many models, including next-gen celebs Dylan Brosnan (son of Keely Shaye Smith and Pierce Brosnan), Dylan Lee (son of Pamela Anderson and Tommy Lee), Jack Kilmer (son of Joanne Whalley and Val Kilmer) and Lucia Santina Ribisi (daughter of Giovanni Ribisi). For this momentous occasion, the head of the new-fledged fashion capital was right at home.

The show-before-the-show unfolded on the sidewalk, where stars aplenty arrived in sheer lace dresses, sweeping capes, shredded jeans, teddy jackets and tiaras, taking selfies under the marquee where “Saint Laurent” glowed in lights. 

Inside the storied Streamline Moderne concert hall, a venue that has played host to Frank Sinatra, Chuck Berry, Jimi Hendrix, The Rolling Stones and more in its 75-year history, the space was thick with rock royalty—all of them Slimane’s muses, too.

Justin Bieber hugged a curly-tressed Lady Gaga and met grunge godmother Courtney Love as Grace Coddington looked on. Ex-spouses Lenny Kravitz and Lisa Bonet posed with their genetically blessed daughter Zoë Kravitz and her boyfriend, Twin Shadow. Sam Smith caught up with Ellen DeGeneres and Portia de Rossi. Mark Ronson and Beck were a matched set in pink tux jackets, and Linda Ramone and J.D. King held court in dueling pilgrim-sized hats. 

The show also marked the 50th anniversary of the Rive Gauche collection, created by Yves Saint Laurent in 1966. He was the first couturier to launch the modern concept of ready-to-wear and in doing so, set a course toward the democratization of fashion. Casual interpretations of his couture pieces were aimed at younger customers and sold out of his Left Bank store.

Slimane has similarly challenged the establishment by moving his atelier from Paris to L.A., changing the house’s name and logo, and catering to the rock ’n’ roll set instead of to critics.

Slimane has similarly challenged the establishment by moving his atelier from Paris to L.A., changing the house’s name and logo, and catering to the rock ’n’ roll set instead of to critics.

But all anyone was thinking about after the light show signaled the start of the main event was how incredible these clothes looked against the West Coast backdrop, and how toe-tappingly good the soundtrack was (“She’s Gone,” by Montreal band PyPy).

Slimane nodded to Rive Gauche by replicating its historic 82-musical-note print on a handful of pieces. But mostly he referenced himself, consolidating his own legacy (for a future label, perhaps?), starting with the first men’s look. The
razor-sharp, black tuxedo harked back to the androgynous, slim-line silhouette he pioneered in the early 2000s at Dior, worn with the fedora that Saint Laurent has made a men’s street-style standard in recent years.

Other Slimane signatures came fast and furious—leopard-print silk cowboy shirts, fringed tapestry jackets, brass-​buttoned officer coats and metallic boots. An amped-up glamour permeated every look, including a beaded “cosmic” tuxedo, and the pièce de résistance, a gold-dipped mink coat.

Although it was technically the men’s collection, there were plenty of women’s looks, too—and they were equally arresting, with lightning-bolt, tiger-stripe and python-patterned embroideries. Slimane worked a midi-length silhouette, with velvet capes or strong-shoulder jackets, worn with silk bow blouses, belted culottes or slim skirts, and high boots.

The staging was a vast improvement over what he had previously done in Paris: The runway was in the round; models walked with purpose, and ample lighting brought into focus the extraordinary craft.

It was Slimane’s most sophisticated collection since taking over the house, presented amid rumors that contract negotiations are at a standstill and he could be leaving. He even took a rare bow.

Was it a farewell or a new beginning? The question was still unanswered when he presented his first women’s couture collection at Paris Fashion Week in March. Only time will tell. But as the after-party roared into the night with live performances by Beck, Father John Misty, Joan Jett and more, it was the best example yet of how to stage a major fashion happening in L.A.

Featuring photography by  HEDI SLIMANE.
Written by BOOTH MOORE.