Sheer and now: Saint Laurent's Paris show dominated by see-through fabrics

Anthony Vaccarello's autumn/winter 2024 collection for Saint Laurent inspired by the brand founder's work with transparent textiles.


Transparent fabrics take center stage

At the recent Paris fashion week, Anthony Vaccarello showcased his autumn/winter 2024 collection for Saint Laurent, which was dominated by see-through fabrics. Models strutted the runway in bare-breasted ensembles featuring translucent blouses, fitted T-shirts, and sleeveless tops. The collection also included transparent pencil skirts, with high-legged knickers visible underneath.

This focus on sheer fabrics is not surprising considering Saint Laurent's history. Back in 1968, the brand's founder, Yves Saint Laurent, introduced the "see-through blouse" - a chiffon design worn without anything underneath. Vaccarello's collection pays homage to this iconic piece and explores the impact of transparent textiles in modern fashion.

A star-studded front row

The front row at the Saint Laurent show was filled with celebrities including Kate Moss, Charlotte Rampling, Rossy de Palma, and Georgia May Jagger. The brand has become a favorite on the red carpet, with stars like Dominic Sessa, Quinta Brunson, and Cillian Murphy donning Saint Laurent designs during the current awards season.

While the collection showcased daring sheer looks, it also offered options for those seeking glamorous yet work-appropriate attire. Satin blouses in jewel colors, trouser suits with defined shoulders and slouchy shapes, and disco-ready "chubby" coats made from marabou feathers were among the alternative styles presented.

Cultural references and brand initiatives

The transparency theme in Saint Laurent's collection aligns with an ongoing exhibition at the Yves Saint Laurent museum in Paris called "Sheer," which explores the brand founder's use of diaphanous fabrics. Vaccarello's inspiration also extends beyond Yves Saint Laurent himself. The show notes referenced Marilyn Monroe's iconic "naked" dress worn in 1962, emphasizing the enduring impact of women wearing clothes that reveal and conceal their bodies.

During Vaccarello's tenure at Saint Laurent, the brand has actively engaged with culture and fashion. This has included controversial projects such as selling vintage band T-shirts for high prices and launching Saint Laurent Babylone, a bookshop in Paris. The brand has also received praise for its inclusive advertising campaigns, featuring older models including Michael Stipe, Lauren Hutton, and Diana Ross.