Yves Saint Laurent: 1970s -1980s Signature Styles

Japan Fashion and Lifestyle Foundation

Explore the signature styles of the 1970s and 1980s

Installation view, 'Yves Saint Laurent's vintage exhibition', Pola museum
The Japan Fashion and Lifestyle Foundation collection consists of around 180 vintage Yves Saint Laurent garments. The collection focuses on items from the early 1970s to the late 1980s, featuring garments that dominated this score of years of fashion history. This exhibition showcases items from this vintage collection mixed together with today’s “real clothes”—wearable, buyable apparel—through newly-created collection videos and a virtual fashion show. Also featured in the exhibition are 12 mannequins dressed in Yves Saint Laurent’s vintage designs.
Installation of styling
A display of 12 mannequins wearing items from the collection, styled with reference to Yves Saint Laurent archives

Tuxedo ensemble

The smoking (tuxedo) jacket is one of Yves Saint Laurent’s signature styles. In 1966 Saint Laurent transformed the male tuxedo to create a suit specifically for women, expanding the range of evening wear available.

This ensemble consists of the smoking (tuxedo) suit and a long, masculine coat.

Safari Look

The Safari jacket is one of Yves Saint Laurent’s iconic looks, and is inspired by the sportswear worn by the elegant aristocracy. Saint Laurent transformed the highly functional safari jacket into a fashion statement. This ensemble consists of trousers and shirt jacket in the same fabric, with a wide belt to define the waist, representing a look that’s sporty yet feminine.

Safari Look

A casual look combining Saint Laurent’s signature safari jacket and elegant velveteen pants.


During the late 60s, Yves Saint Laurent actively designed trousers for women. He transformed trousers, initially worn by men, into a feminine look conveying elegance and class.

Daytime ensemble

Saint Laurent’s trousers are masculine and yet are designed with chic and elegant women in mind. These trousers are worn with a masculine double-breasted blazer, the bow blouse adding a feminine touch.

Daytime ensemble

An ensemble combining a Nep tweed suit and velvet skipper. The addition of velvet has added a modern twist to a classic style.

Daytime ensemble

An ensemble consisting of a classical blouse and skirt, with the belt on the wide yoke waist creating the visual effect of a corset.

Day time dress

A double-breasted daytime dress featuring masculine tailoring and a feminine, straight shift silhouette.

Long evening dress
A straight evening dress, the features of which are the bold slits under both arms and on the sleeves.。

Long evening dress

Different fabrics have been combined in this dress, the feature of which is the beautiful draping of the skirt.

Long evening dress

An evening dress featuring a bold backless design and a slit in the front.

Long evening ensemble

A straight silhouette ensemble consisting of a bolero and a long skirt, featuring red lining of the black bolero.

All about photo panels
Photo panels display styles based on the clothes in the vintage collection or mixed in with contemporary clothes. Red-back panels feature vintage items mixed with contemporary real clothes, while yellow-back panels feature vintage collection styles.

Collection video featuring models wearing vintage items mixed with today’s real clothes.

Collection video featuring models wearing vintage Yves Saint Laurent items mixed with today’s real clothes. The vintage clothes with their elegant, classy designs and silhouettes, and their superb, flowing materials are a delight to watch. Combined with today’s clothes, the result is a distinctive collection with a contemporary twist.

Credits: All media
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