In 1965, Spanish filmmaker Luis Buñuel released the groundbreaking film Belle De Jour, starring the ever dynamic Catherine Deneuve. But it was the film’s anti-hero, a gold-toothed gangster named Marcel played by the smouldering Pierre Clémenti, that would deliver a masterclass in styling, scene after scene delivering suave, brooding looks that drip sex appeal.
From the leather coats and ankle boots to the impeccable, slim-cut suits that still managed to look louche – Clémenti was the blueprint for a wardrobe that delivered tailored looks in the most rock and roll way. Is it any wonder, then, that this would be the inspiration behind Anthony Vaccarello’s 2022 fall collection for Saint Laurent? It’s a nice touch of circularity for Vaccarello, who had, in 2021, previously appeared in a shoot with Deneuve honouring her role as one of the late Yves’ most influential supporters and constant muse for the Maison.
The collection, which arrives in store this month, is an ode to a menswear that defies trends. Instead, it speaks to timeless style. One where tailoring and fit are as sharp as the attitudes of the men who are wearing it. It also continues on the late Yves’ legacy made his womenswear so groundbreaking back in the ’60s and ’70s. Rather than modifying these codes that mark the Saint Laurent aesthetic, making them to be more “masculine”, they celebrate the inherent androgyny within the silhouettes.
The proportions of a double-breasted lambskin jacket, for example, allow for a streamlined finish in the body yet the tiniest amount of additional width and bulk at the shoulders retains an oversized, rakish effect. A signature silk shirt is worn loose, unbuttoned, ready for the evening yet also perfect for the day with just the tiniest of adjustments (and perhaps a tie). The leather ankle boots worn by Marcel, so instrumental to his look they even get their own frame in the film dedicated to their placement on the floor, are now heeled with a gold horsebit across the toe.
In a sea of sneakers and shredded denim, Saint Laurent remains a bastion of tasteful elegance for men who seek the timeless, rather than trends.
And when your inspiration is the kind of man with the confidence to seduce one of film’s most beautiful women? Who says being the bad guy doesn’t pay.
Shop the Saint Laurent Fall Winter 2022 collection here.