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Vintage Yves Saint Laurent Passementerie Saphire Blue and Black Tassel Belt
The suit, the safari jacket, the peasant dress—Yves Saint Laurent was a master at seeing the high-fashion potential of that which others might have dismissed. This passementerie belt is an example of his design genius. Passementerie, the art of making elaborate trimmings such as galloon, gimp, tassels and fringes, flourished from the sixteenth century when guilds were first established in France to the early-twentieth century. On clothing and furniture, these handcrafted embellishments were a sign of wealth and rank. With modernity, however, they fell out of favor and became passé.
Yves Saint Laurent turned that perception on its head. For his fall/winter 1976/1977 Russian-themed collection, which was inspired by the ornamental beauty of Léon Bakst’s costumes for the Ballet Russes, he accessorized the lavish looks with tasseled and braided belts hand-finished by the storied passementerie makers. The runway show revived a taste for excess and made passementerie details a brand signature.
This passementerie belt is beautifully crafted from cords of vibrant sapphire blue (shot through with threads of purple) and black. The wide sash alternates the colors in stripes, with the sapphire blue sections featuring a closed weave and the black sections featuring openwork. Each stripe ends in a robust tassel bound at the tops in the opposite hue. It’s a piece with timeless boho chic appeal for the fashion lover or collector.
Length: 60 inches, fully adjustable to any waist size
Width: 3 inches
Tassels: 4 inches
This vintage Yves Saint Laurent passementerie belt is in excellent condition. The weave is tight and strong, the tassels are full and the colors are vibrant. The sash is crafted from cords of sapphire blue (shot through with threads of purple) and black. The width alternates the colors in stripes, with the sapphire blue sections featuring a closed weave and the black sections featuring openwork.
Each stripe ends in a robust tassel bound at the tops in the opposite hue. The belt interior includes a gold metal etched Yves Saint Laurent Rive Gauche logo plate. High-quality vintage pieces like this are yours to live in and love while increasing in value every year. It’s never too soon to start collecting them, as an investment in your wardrobe—and in yourself.