1936-2008 Yves Saint Laurent
View Single Post
Join Date: Dec 2004
Premium prices for YSL vintage
By Linda Sandler
THURSDAY, OCTOBER 6, 2005
As the Paris shows of ready-to-wear clothes open, buyers are paying premiums for rare examples of haute couture.
At a Christie's International auction in London, an Yves Saint Laurent nautical-style blazer raised £6,600, or $11,667, from a European buyer last week, as bidders drove the price up from a top estimate of £300. The blazer was part of a collection of clothes worn on the catwalk by Ulla Carenby of Sweden, one of YSL's favorite models in the 1970s. Many YSL items sold for four times their top estimates, or more.
"These were unique pieces, so you never really know how much they'll bring," said Patricia Frost, head of the costume department at the London-based auction house. The high prices will influence Christie's future estimates on vintage clothing, she said in an interview.
Auctions of vintage clothes are on the rise as they become collectibles and as more women seek unusual items. Museums, vintage clothing dealers, designers and private collectors were big buyers at the Christie's auction, Frost said.
In Paris, the auction house Cornette de Saint Cyr, better known for contemporary art sales, sold a 1967 YSL pearled dress for 18,000, or $21,720, in July, the newspaper Les Echos reported.
Christie's auction room in the South Kensington district of London was packed with women looking for bargains as well as retailers and collectors of vintage clothing. YSL items had three or four telephone bidders competing for them.
Asked if she would bet on any trends coming out of fashion week based on the auction, Frost said romantic, Bohemian clothes may do well. The British designer Ossie Clark's print dresses of the 1970s were snapped up by collectors and wearers at Christie's sale, she said.
Christie's is owned by François Pinault, who also controls Gucci Group and YSL, along with the Paris retailer Le Printemps, through his company PPR. Christie's last month showed highlights from its Sept. 29 auction in a preview at Printemps. Christie's currently is previewing items at the Printemps store from its March 2006 London sale, as part of a show of vintage clothing.
"There are crossovers between Pinault's customers and Christie's," said Frost.
Christie's sale last week included 78 lots of ready-to-wear clothes from the wardrobe of Mouna Ayoub, a patron of haute couture who wrote a book in 2000 about her marriage to a Saudi billionaire. The items, ranging from an ivory bouclé wool Chanel jacket to Gucci leather trousers trimmed with mink, as well as high boots and ankle boots from Gucci and Chanel, mostly sold, some above their estimates.
Ayoub, 50, has been successful in shedding unwanted accessories. In 1998, Christie's auctioned a 112.53-carat yellow diamond fashioned by Bulgari for $3.2 million and raised a total of $8 million for her from a jewelry sale.
Last edited by taz; 10-10-2005 at
View this member's profile
Post a comment to this member's profile
Send a private message to taz
Find More Posts by taz