When I hear that Yves-Saint-Laurent transferred power to women, by inventing the women's tuxedo, I always think that we are forgetting an entire heritage carried by women, long before him. A great couturier, in tune with his generation, in the midst of sexual liberation and post-war euphoria, he certainly brings an ultra-sexy side to this borrowing from the men's wardrobe, poses superb slender women, wearing the jacket next to the skin . An aesthetic that we still find in the Saint-Laurent today.
Why not remember that before Saint-Laurent, or even before Chanel which also "liberated women" and drew its inspiration from the codes of men's wardrobe (tweed, hunting jackets, woolen cloth pants) , there is George Sand. Of course, she was not a fashion designer and did not have the vocation of dressing women...
Aurore Dupin, future George Sand, does so for both practical and political reasons. Practical because here she arrives in a Paris at war, her children under her arm, leaving her boring husband left in the provinces to write freely and live her life. Very quickly the cumbersome and slightly tartignol dresses of the romantic era bothered her, preventing her from wandering the streets to visit publishers and press titles.
This is because she has to earn her living, with her pen, and a woman tangled in her petticoats, with a constrained waist and well-smoothed ringlets has no real place in editorials. What's more, she is careful with her finances: dresses are expensive, men's clothes much more affordable.
This is how Aurore Dupin will become George Sand, dressed in men's pants, vest and shirt, frequenting men's salons, adopting this nickname which. suits him.
George Sand. Too forgotten, not celebrated enough. Perhaps because in a world where images reign, iconography of her is too rare because she did not like to pose, to be represented, to be idolized. There are very few portraits, very few photos. George Sand was not crazy about her image and far from being flirtatious. Perhaps she was also wary of being too objectified, represented and reduced to the status of muse or icon of seduction.
She is therefore a woman who transforms the oh-so-rigid social codes of the wardrobe and that is modern and it raises the question of gender and its social attributes well before its time.
It is therefore almost two centuries ago a woman who will collect conquests among the most talented men of her generation: writers, musicians, publishers absolutely not as a predator or a femme fatale, but as a passionate lover, diving in a great intellectual and creative complicity. And that’s modern, it’s even timeless.
She is a woman who takes up the cause of political issues, brilliantly, using her influence and her talent as an author, to such an extent that the great Victor Hugo, not very modest and sure of his talent, recognized her as a great of her generation.