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The Haute Bohemienne

November 13, 2011

Prunis Chapeaux

The other day I received a wonderful gift – a 70 year old vintage hat – given to me by Jenny, the carer of a 92 year old woman. The hat was the delicious colour of crushed prunis leaves. It was the perfect companion to my latest vintage Gigli skirt and jacket again in that gorgeous prunis colour fashionable in an earlier era.

La Haute Bohemienne

Loulou de la Falaise, Yves Saint Laurent- Wedding Dress

I saw Loulou de la Falaise in the swinging London of the early 70s dining at Mr Chow’s Fashionable restaurant in Knightsbridge. No one could miss Loulou. She not only smoked incessantly she looked like an aristocratic Gypsy elf in a colorful ensemble with turban accessorized with the natural nonchalance she seemed to have been born with.

Daughter of an Anglo Irish fashion model and French aristocrat she was born rebellious. She was expelled from schools in England, Switzerland and the French School in New York. She moved to London when she was 18. London was then the centre of the fashionable world.

After an unsuccessful brief first marriage she married Thadée Klossowski de Rola, a writer and the younger son of the painter Balthus. This happy marriage was to last her life time. She wore a harem and turban ensemble from Yves Saint Laurent at her wedding and the couple later had a daughter, Anna.

Loulou's Paris Apartment

Loulou de la FalaiseLoulou was known in fashionable circles as the muse to couturier Yves Saint Laurent. But it seems she was much more than a muse. She helped Saint Laurent develop his Rive Gauche prêt-a-porter business where she designed hats and jewellery and after Saint Laurent’s retirement she developed her own line of chunky, avant-garde jewellery and accessories.

To the very end of her prematurely short life at 63 she seemed to embody a joie de vivre combined with that rarest of quality – natural chic.

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