Every week a different FADER staff member will pick a clothing item or accessory that he or she has lately been spending a lot of time with—or would like to—and write a little love letter to it. We would’ve done a column on who we’re dating but that seemed a little bit much. This week Deidre Dyer talks about Erica Weiner’s YSL Zipper Pull Earrings.
My admiration for Yves Saint Laurent was ignited when I read The Beautiful Fall by Alicia Drake, a flashy book that charted the parallel careers of Saint Laurent and Karl Lagerfeld from young apprentices duking it out for the top prize all the way to their legendary statues as creative juggernauts of their respective houses, still duking it out for the top prize. While Lagerfeld was lauded for his Xerox-like ability to imitate any designer’s oeuvre and his freakishly prolific designs sketched at a moment’s notice, YSL’s creative process was more labor-intensive. His fits of output were marked by emotional roller-coasters, fainting spells after the final look was sent down the runway and reclusive holidays at his home in Morocco to recuperate. Saint Laurent literally bled for all of his Ballet Russes ruffles and Le Smoking jackets.
Knowing the brutality of the process and the glory of the finished product makes me proud to own this tiny piece of YSL’s grand vision. These earrings are a testament to his attention to, and love of, detail. Jewelry designer Erica Weiner quickly snatched up a five pound bag of vintage YSL zipper pulls from the 1970s, gave them a good shine and repurposed them into these demure logo earrings, knowing that even the hardware from Saint Laurent’s dresses are worth their weight in gold. When I wear them, they usually feel invisible, light in weight and fading into my brown skin. But someone always notices them and pays me a compliment. Four decades later, even the minutest intricacies of Saint Laurent’s work still garner the highest praise.