After much speculation of Hedi Slimane’s tenure at Saint Laurent, Business of Fashion has reported that the designer is leaving his post as creative director for the house, as confirmed by Yves Saint Laurent and Kering (the luxury group which owns the brand) in a brief statement. After dazzling us with his Fall 2016 collection in Los Angeles, we were hopeful the rumor mill was just that—total hearsay. However, Slimane’s March showing in Paris marked his last for the label, as the designer’s contract ended this week.
“What Yves Saint Laurent has achieved over the past four years represents a unique chapter in the history of the house,” said François-Henri Pinault, chairman and chief executive officer of Kering. “I am very grateful to Hedi Slimane, and the whole Yves Saint Laurent team, for having set the path that the house has successfully embraced, and which will grant longevity to this legendary brand.”
Beloved for transforming the iconic brand through his rock-inspired designs and edgy campaigns, Slimane made an enormous impact on the French label over the course of his creative direction, most notably by dropping the “Yves” from the label’s ready-to-wear collection and establishing a permanent presence in Los Angeles with a design studio.
While we’re saddened by the news, we remain very interested as to who will replace Slimane at Saint Laurent and where the esteemed designer is off to next. Though it’s been suggested that Belgian designer Anthony Vaccarello is next in line, no announcements have been made.