A girl wouldn't think twice about topping off her look with a chic blazer today, but it was a different story back in 1966 when Yves Saint Laurent introduced the now iconic le smoking jacket to the fashion world. At first, editors and buyers didn't react well to Saint Laurent's collection; New York Times critic Gloria Emerson described his collection as "lumpy" and "outdated" and said Saint Laurent "strains too hard to convince the world he is hand-in-hand and eye-to-eye with the very young." However, fashion influencers like Catherine Deneuve, Liza Minnelli, Lauren Bacall, and Bianca Jagger immediately fell in love with Saint Laurent's daring menswear-inspired style, flaunting his designs all around Paris. "For a woman, le smoking is an indispensable garment with which she finds herself continually in fashion, because it is about style, not fashion," said Saint Laurent. "Fashions come and go, but style is forever." Fast forward to 2011 and it's safe to say that le smoking is here to stay. Whether you're a powerhouse working woman or fashion editrix, these jackets add a polished touch to any look. Looking for a new one to add to your wardrobe? Just peruse the slideshow to shop our ultimate blazer picks ranging from decadent investment pieces from Yves Saint Laurent to more affordable options.
Le Smoking — The Ultimate Jacket and Why You Need One