This week’s column…Yves Saint Laurent to be rebranded as Saint Laurent Paris

It is an iconic logo that has been around for over half a century, but now Yves Saint Laurent’s interlocking initial stamp is set to change.

Under the new directorship of Hedi Slimane the Yves Saint Laurent ready-to-wear collection will be rebranded as Saint Laurent Paris (SLP). And although the famous signature will remain unaltered on handbags, cosmetics and shoes, there is no certainty that it will continue to be used as widely.

The name change is yet another alteration that has occurred since the French creative director took over in March.

Yves Saint Laurent was founded by designer Yves Saint Laurent and his partner, Pierre Bergé in 1962, and the current logo was created by the graphic designer Cassandre. Over the years it has become as recognisable as Chanel’s interlocked Cs or Louis Vuitton’s LV and the recent announcement that Yves would be eliminated has provoked outcry from a number of commentators.

However, a spokesperson for Slimane said he was drawing inspiration from 1966, when the ready-to-wear line was launched as Saint Laurent Rive Gauche.

When appointed, Slimane – the former creative director of Dior Homme – was given “total creative responsibility for the brand image and all its collections” and is said to be focussing on “recapturing the impulses that inspired the founder to launch the Saint Laurent Rive Gauche ready-to-wear line in 1966 – among them youth, freedom and modernity.”

It has also been announced recently that Slimane would be moving the French label’s design studio from Paris to his adoptive city of Los Angeles. While fittings would still take place in Paris and YSL ateliers will continue to work from the label’s Avenue George V offices.

Slimane relocated to LA in 2007 after he left Dior Homme to concentrate on art and photography. While it is traditional for creative directors of French houses to live in Paris, Slimane follows in the footsteps of Phoebe Philo, who leads Paris-based Celine from London.

The logo makeover, to be presented with Slimane’s first womenswear collection this autumn, will use similar fonts to the 1966 branding.

Saint Laurent died in 2008 and produced the label’s last haute couture collection in 2002.

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