YSL’s Stefano Pilati gets straight to the point

01 September 2008


The fashion world is a buzz with this weekend's New York Times interview with YSL creative director Stefano Pilati. In the world of fashion where words are chosen carefully, especially when they are to be published, Pilati is fearlessly frank.
there is a difference between having a gift and having talent. And Tom is talented but not gifted.
ON TOM AFTER PRADA: When I first met him I was under his spell. But I was amazingly scared to move to Paris and work for YSL. Prada was like family, and it was a very female environment. Tom was surrounded by men, and he was like a fashion designer in a movie. We were naïve at Prada - we did things because we liked them, and they took off. Tom was much more calculated. I spent the first year trying to absorb his mentality. It was very difficult. Tom was mostly living in London, and I was being tested by everyone at YSL in Paris. Even the receptionist. They all hated Tom, and they were telling me about Mr Saint Laurent and what he used to do.'
ON MADONNA: Madonna is a talented person but she is not gifted. She's not Pina Bausch or Margot Fonteyn.
ON NAOMI CAMPBELL: Naomi represents the new world - in my mind she is a mix of Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama.
ON THE YSL IT BAGS: I have reconciled myself to the fact that for many of our customers, their uniform is jeans, a white t shirt and a Muse bag.
ON ADDICTION: I was working while I was a heroin addict. It was integrated in my everyday life: in the morning, you take the drug, and then you go to work, and then again in the afternoon and in the evening. Now [after rehab] I am much more intrigued by lucidity than I was by alteration.
ON A DISTRESSED T SHIRT IN THE NEW COLLECTION: ‘Maybe it's so bad that it's good - we need to leave room for accidents.'
Hmmmm... food for thought indeed. There's enough here to keep those fashion front rows entertained for weeks ahead.


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