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Yves Saint Laurent YSL Black and White Silk Print High Neck Evening Dress, 1985



Who says that an evening look has to be over the top? Versatile designer Yves Saint Laurent was a master of the flamboyant, but also the refined. With the goal to make fashion more accessible, he reimagined year-after-year garment categories and how to make them fresh and easy to wear. From the Spring/Summer 1985 runway collection , this black and white YSL sheath dress incorporates a high neckline and a stylized print resembling of rounded scales. The full-length straight skirt falls from the empire waistline. At the back, a deep keyhole breaks up the print also allowing for additional fitting ease around the bust. This dress can be worn for a number of occasions and provide a stylish degree of simplicity and ease. Size estimate: S/M Size: 40 Bust: 34 inches Bodice length: from shoulder to seam under bust: 12 inches Waist: 30 Hips: 37 inches Length: 53 inches Fully lined, the dress closes at the side with metal zip while the neck fastens at centre back with three, quarter-ball buttons. At the centre back hem, there is a slit to allow for walking ease. Professionally cleaned and pressed, this YSL dress is in excellent condition. High-quality vintage pieces like this are yours to live in and love while increasing in value every year. It’s never too soon to start collecting them, as an investment in your wardrobe—and in yourself.


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    Ships From: Boca Raton, FL
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About the Designer

Yves Saint Laurent

French fashion designer Yves Saint Laurent pioneered “cross-design” in fashion, taking inspiration from street trends to modernize haute couture.

Saint Laurent was the first to launch a ready-to-wear label, YSL Rive Gauche Prêt-à-Porter. He was the first couturier to open boutiques for both men and women. Using traditional menswear fabrics and designs for women, Saint Laurent also literally cross-dressed, giving men and women alike chic pant suits, elegant tuxedo jackets and urban safari gear. By blurring gender-specific design, he empowered individual style while creating a scissor-sharp fashion aesthetic of sensual ease and beauty. Many of his designs are today considered timeless classics. Saint Laurent also consistently used Black models, like Mounia, Iman and Naomi Campbell, and he drew endless inspiration from different ethnicities and cultures, in no small part because of his Algerian roots.

Born to French parents in Oran, Algeria, in 1936, Saint Laurent went to Paris at age 17 to study fashion at the Chambre Syndicale de la Haute Couture. Just two years later, in 1955, his remarkable sketches were shown to Christian Dior, then the world’s reigning couturier, who hired him immediately.

Surprisingly soon thereafter, Dior publicly chose Saint Laurent as his successor, which sadly proved prescient when the fashion legend died unexpectedly, in 1957. A mere slip of a youth, the 21-year-old Saint Laurent was nevertheless up to the challenge. He shook the traditional couture clientele to its core with youthful silhouettes and styles like the A-line trapeze dress that hung with seeming effortlessness from the shoulders, the antithesis of the pinched waists and molded skirts that had been all the rage after the deprivations of World War II.

After a mandated spell in the torturous French military, Saint Laurent suffered a nervous breakdown and was dismissed by Dior in 1962. Out of the ashes rose the Age of Yves. With Pierre Bergé, his then-lover who became his lifelong business partner and friend, the designer founded Yves Saint Laurent YSL to encompass prêt-à-porter, or ready-to-wear. In 1966, they opened the first YSL Rive Gauche women’s boutique in Paris, followed soon thereafter by YSL Rive Gauche for men. Saint Laurent had given birth to a global brand.

His revolutionary Mondrian mini dress from 1965 is a core element of his fashion biography. It is a prime example of how Saint Laurent, an avid art lover and collector, looked to painters, from Goya to Picasso, Ingres to Matisse, for inspiration.

With its pure lines and hues, Mondrian’s ground-breaking 1935 color-block painting Composition C transmutes beautifully into a dress that is highly valued by collectors of contemporary fashion and widely copied commercially to this day. The design is the epitome of Saint Laurent’s aesthetic, requiring a meticulous hand piecing of each color block so that, despite the body’s curves, the visual plane is as flat as a canvas when the garment is worn. Mondrian’s purity met its match in Saint Laurent.

“I am no longer concerned with sensation and innovation, but with the perfection of my style,” Saint Laurent said four years before retiring, in 2002. After a long period of ill health, he died at his home in Paris on June 1, 2008.

Browse an extraordinary collection of vintage Yves Saint Laurent evening dresses, shirts, handbags and other clothing and accessories today on 1stDibs.

About the Seller
Located in Boca Raton, FL
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Established in 2014
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