When Hedi Slimane unveiled his final collection for Saint Laurent in Paris, it felt like a special occasion. Guests were asked to turn off their phones for the silent runway, which turned out to be a showing of couture for Fall '16. Very special indeed.
The pieces were bold, bright '80s rock and roll that's decidedly more glamorous than grunge this season. Slimane perfected the one-shouldered minidress with his modern vision: playful proportions and luxurious fabrics that make the Saint Laurent-clad party girl the envy of everyone else in the room (or more likely, on the red carpet). There was a nod to David Bowie and a red, heart-shaped fur that would stop traffic, as it seemed to on the runway, but between these shock-and-awe moments, there were also the pieces that have made Hedi a force at reshaping the brand. The leather, particularly the rock-and-roll-ready, star-emblazoned jacket; the hardware; and the shoes — a lineup of slick pumps — are in Hedi's design DNA and now among the Saint Laurent essentials. That's the legacy he's built; and he went out with a bang, delivering wow factor with restraint.