The Story of Loulou de la Falaise

Posted on January 16 2015

When it comes to fashion, Loulou de la Falaise seemed to be at the centre of it all. A style icon and muse for Yves Saint Laurent, she becomes the embodiment of what it meant to be chic in France. She had a daring sense of style and was well-known for her humour and influence over the fashion world. This impact lasted throughout the ages, as for forty years, she designed jewellery and accessories both for her own line and for Yves Saint Lauren as well. She was truly a fashion icon who had a timeless image.

The new volume documenting Loulou's life contains over four hundred images, all from contemporary photographers who were eager to capture her sense of style and grace in front of a camera. With our own guest collaborator, Michael Roberts, having captured this striking woman for the front cover, you'll see the work of other photographers, such as Richard Avedon, Bettina Rheims, and Helmut Newton. These impressive photos are an accurate representation of why Loulou remained such a fashion icon and influence for so many years, and still continues to inspire even today.

She brought the Bohemian chic to the forefront of the fashion scene, wearing it with such style and grace that no one had ever witnessed before. She was a breath of fresh air in the French haute couture scene, and continued to take the world of French fashion by storm with the unique eye she had for accessorizing and putting together outfits that said volumes more than the clothing itself. It was in New York that she started her modeling career with Richard Avedon and Irving Penn, but simply posing in front of the camera became quite boring for her.

Eventually, Loulou moved to London, where she met Saint Laurent, where she was allowed to further develop her sense of style and wit. Minimalism was not something that ever graced her closet, preferring to wear the brightest and boldest of colours, and as many accessories as she could fit around her wrists and neck. It was only many years later after Saint Laurent's retirement that she saw the opportunity to sell her own style. Each outfit was built out of instinctiveness of fitting the form, but with a look of "last minute", as if the outfit itself were an afterthought. It was this careful balance that made her sense of fashion so unique and sophisticated that people were drawn to.

Even when she supposedly retired from the fashion scene, she continued to design jewellery for Oscar de la Renta and a line of clothing for HSN, alongside being an avid gardener at home. Her penchant for flair and excitement kept her on her toes and continued to influence the fashion world long after her retirement and her passing.

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