What star sign was Yves Saint Laurent?

The designer was born on this day 1 August in 1936, under the same sign as fellow fashion icon Coco Chanel
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Gilt metal earrings in the shape of lions’ heads in profile, Autumn/Winter 1986 haute couture collection. All images from Yves Saint Laurent Accessories
Gilt metal earrings in the shape of lions’ heads in profile, Autumn/Winter 1986 haute couture collection. All images from Yves Saint Laurent Accessories

In 1987, the fashion designer Yves Saint Laurent made a list of some of his favourite things for the French magazine, L’Egoïste.

The handwritten note, republished in our book Yves Saint Laurent Accessories, lists such treasured objects and good-luck charms as his own, personal copy of Marcel Proust’s In Search of Lost Time (“since the age of 15 I have read this peerless work over and over again), a 17th century cross which once belonged to Coco Chanel, and also a miniature lion.

 

One page of Yves' 1987 note
One page of Yves' 1987 note

Why the little big cat? Well, Yves – like Ms Chanel – had a feline star sign. He was born on this day, 1 August in 1936, making him, from an astrological view, a fiery, leonine creative.

 

Yves Saint Laurent and model Amalia backstage at the Spring/Summer 2000 haute couture show, Inter-Continental hotel, Paris, January 2000. © Fondation Pierre Bergé – Yves Saint Laurent, Paris/All Rights Reserved
Yves Saint Laurent and model Amalia backstage at the Spring/Summer 2000 haute couture show, Inter-Continental hotel, Paris, January 2000. © Fondation Pierre Bergé – Yves Saint Laurent, Paris/All Rights Reserved

“As if to highlight still further the kinship between these two most important figures in the world of twentieth-century fashion design, they were both born under the same sign, Leo,” writes Patrick Mauriès in Yves Saint Laurent Accessories. “Not surprisingly, lions were good-luck charms for both of them, and were incorporated into a particularly striking pair of earrings by Saint Laurent in the shape of two opposing lions’ heads.”

Incidentally, the king of the animal world wasn’t the only emblematic beast to make it into Yves’ accessories. ”He was also fascinated by another powerfully symbolic creature emblematic of the cosmos and infinity,” writes Mauriès, “the ouroboros of ancient mythology and alchemy, a serpent that rounds on itself and bites its own tail. It appeared as a decorative motif in several of his designs, and was an obvious motif for him to use to fasten a famous gilt bronze belt around a woman’s waist.”

 

Gilt metal belt, fastened with two serpents' heads, 1970s.
Gilt metal belt, fastened with two serpents' heads, 1970s.

This ancient symbol of introversion and eternity may not have summed up Yves character as accurately as his Leo earrings, yet he still managed to work them into his beautiful, intriguing accessories range.

 

Yves Saint Laurent Accessories

To see those accessories in greater detail, order a copy of Yves Saint Laurent Accessories here. And for more cultural interpretations of the sky at night, order a copy of Universe.


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