La Vilaine Lulu

We were young and having a lot of fun. After 6 p.m., one of Christian Dior’s collaborators [Jean-Pierre Frère] would often disguise himself. One evening, he rolled his pants up to his knees. I remember he was wearing long black socks. He had found a red tulle petticoat and a gondolier’s hat in the models’ dressing room. Very small and almost disturbing with his stubborn and cunning attitude, he impressed me, and I said to him, ‘You are la vilaine Lulu.

Yves Saint Laurent.

That was how Yves Saint Laurent created La Vilaine Lulu, a comic strip depicting a malicious little girl who flouts convention. It was the young couturier’s scathing and humorous take on his era, specifying in the introductory note that “toute ressemblance avec des personnes qui existent ou qui ont existé est parfaitement voulue.”  He nonetheless aserted that it was out of the question to say “I am la Vilaine Lulu!

Ten years later, in 1967, the writer Françoise Sagan encouraged Saint Laurent to publish Lulu’s adventures with the Éditions Tchou. This album has been republished three times.