The Yves Saint Laurent wardrobe of Catherine Deneuve achieves $1 million
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The Yves Saint Laurent wardrobe of Catherine Deneuve achieves $1 million
This file photo taken on January 18, 2019 shows Yves Saint Laurent creations belonging to French actress Catherine Deneuve on display at Christie's auction house in Paris. ALAIN JOCARD / AFP.

PARIS.- The live auction of the wardrobe of Catherine Deneuve designed by Yves Saint Laurent achieved a total of $1,025,581 / €900,625 / £785,887 and sell-through rates of 100%. The interest in the sale was so immense that 90% of all 129 lots sold multiple times above their pre-sale estimates. The auction lasted 5 hours, witnessing fierce competition from around the globe. Each piece of haute couture or Rive Gauche clothing was a testament to the 40-year long friendship between France’s most iconic actress and one of the world’s most renowned couturier.

The pre-sale exhibition during Paris Fashion Week was attended by 4,500 visitors, welcoming young fashion design students, fashionistas and admires of Catherine Deneuve and Yves Saint Laurent.

The online bidding participation for the sale was one of the highest that Christie’s France has witnessed over the past 5 years, attracting far over 100 new registrants. For any collectors still hoping for the opportunity to acquire a piece, the online-only auction will remain open for bidding until 30 January 2019 midnight and offers a further 140 lots of Catherine Deneuve’s wardrobe designed by Yves Saint Laurent.

Catherine Deneuve commented: “This week, with highlights including the view and the auction itself, has been a new experience for me and has exceeded my expectations in many ways. I would like to thank Christie’s for the beautiful catalogue and the fact they paid tribute to YSL’s talent by presenting his creations in such an exquisite way at the preview, attended by thousands of people. I sincerely hope that the new owners will enjoy these pieces of couture as much as I did.”

François de Ricqlès, President Christie’s France added: “This sale which was a real triumph, achieving €900,000 for the first part of Catherine Deneuve’s wardrobe, paid tribute to these two iconic French artists which are the glory of this country. During the auction, the Yves Saint Laurent Museum preempted three lots. We would like to express our deepest thank you to Catherine Deneuve for entrusting us with the sale of her treasured Yves Saint Laurent wardrobe.”

The top lot of the auction was the Haute Couture evening ensemble of the unique and very sought after Russian Collection, which Mr. Saint Laurent designed for the Fall/Winter collection of 1977/78. Selling at €52,500 it surpassed its high pre-sale estimate by 10 times.

A superb short beaded dress designed by Yves Saint Laurent for the Spring/Summer collection of 1969, which the actress wore when she met Alfred Hitchcock the same year in company of Philippe Noiret and François Truffaut, sold for €42,500 against a pre-sale estimate of €3,000-5,000.

The last lot of the sale, a superb black velvet sable trimmed jacket from the Fall/Winter collection of 1997/98 took several minutes to sell and was contested by bidders from 10 different countries. It finally sold for €33,750 against a pre-sale estimate of €800-1,200.

The Yves Saint Laurent Museum preempted lot 80, a quilted jacket and a pair of silk trousers from the Spring 1977 collection; lot 82, a black chiffon cocktail dress from the Fall/Winter collection of 1972/73 and lot 122, a quilted brown silk jacket from the Fall/Winter collection of 1971/72. Furthermore, international institutions acquired several lots in the sale, such as the Fashion Museum of Santiago in Chile and the Bowes Museum in Great Britain.

Amongst the most sought-after pieces was the famous YSL smoking. The one, he designed for Catherine Deneuve and which she wore at the occasion of Yves Saint Laurent’s 20th anniversary celebration, just set a new world auction record for any smoking at €20,000. The gold metallic velvet draped evening dress worn by Catherine Deneuve at the 2000 Oscar’s ceremony for the nomination of Régis Wargnier’s film, Est-Ouest, surpassed its pre-sale estimate of €2,000-3,000 by 11 times, achieving €33,700.

The online-only sale offers another 140 items from Catherine Deneuve’s YSL wardrobe and will conclude on 30th January at midnight.

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