Tom Ford Hates Yves Saint Laurent, and the Word Marriage

Tom Ford lets go in an interview with Kevin Sessums at The Advocate, discussing A Single Man, the first blowjob he ever gave, his partner Richard Buckley, his use of cosmetic fillers for the face, and his life in the fashion world.

AdvocateFord unleashes on Yves Saint Laurent:

"I don’t even remember much about my time at Yves Saint Laurent, though
I do think some of my best collections were [there]—other than that
black-and-white initial one. That one wasn’t very successful and wasn’t
very good. But being at Yves Saint Laurent was such a negative
experience for me even though the business boomed while I was there.
Yves and his partner, Pierre Bergé, were so difficult and so evil and
made my life such misery. I’d lived in France off and on and had always
loved it. I went to college in France. It wasn’t until I started
working in France that I began to dislike it. They would call the
fiscal police, and they would show up at our offices. You are not able
to work an employee more than 35 hours a week. They’re like Nazis,
those police. They’d come marching in, and you had to let them in and
they’d interview my secretary. And they can fine you and shut you down.
Pierre was the one calling them. I’ve never talked about this
on the record before, but it was an awful time for me. Pierre and Yves
were just evil. So Yves Saint Laurent doesn’t exist for me."

Ford also says he's in favor of civil partnerships and not marriage, for everyone.

Ford_buckley "A few weeks ago Richard had to go into the hospital for something, and
I had to carry around all these legal documents saying I could make
medical decisions for him. It was insane. The fact that we are not
married in the federal sense means that if I were to die, he’d have to
pay all these taxes on my estate and receive but a fraction of it and
he’d have to alter his life —whereas if we were married, he wouldn’t
have to face that burden. That’s disgusting. It’s wrong. But that said,
I think I am in favor of terming what I’m talking about as a civil
partnership. We all get so caught up with this word marriage. For me,
the word marriage is something that a religion should decide. Just give
me all the same rights. A civil partnership is what I’d like for
everyone—heterosexual as well as homosexual. Call it what you like—it’s
the rights that are important. Getting hung up with the semantics
derails the cause we’re all fighting for."

More at the Advocate. Check out the one-sheet and trailer for A Single Man, HERE.


  1. TANK says

    The advocate’s the swirling the drain, and has been for quite some time. I’ve nothing against tom ford (except his cologne isn’t to my liking–but everyone’s a critic), but this is drivelous puff.

  2. Disgusted American says

    Mr Ford – of course YOU don’t care about the semantics…between Marriage/and Civil Unions (as long as ALL the rights are conferred) and yes I kinda agree, But the American Gov’t isn’t gonna make that change and call “everyones” joining Civil Unions,and leave marriage to the church, its too ingrained in our culture to change it now…and besides the heteros don’t even wanna give LGBT Americans Civil Unions/or anything “equivelant” to marriage (see last election) that WHY we all fight for marriage. You have less stress sir..You ARE Filthy Rich, you can get your lwyer on the phone and have him/her bring ALL your LEGAL documents whenever & where-ever you are in the world…the average LGBT American can’t.

  3. Martin says

    Yves and Pierre gave – what was it?- 350 million Euros to charity last year. They can’t be this evil! I would not think this is evil!

    If Tom thinks he is a hot shot and a player in fashion then he would know how to play it right, apparently he did not learn it at Gucci. Don’t act like a child and come crying…

  4. says

    agreed. the word marriage is laced with so much historical baggage.

    but regardless, “unions” (or whatever we want to call them) remain a human right that is denied to far to many americans.

    in the meantime, you can come to canada.

  5. says

    I agree with Ford on marriage…it is much too tied to religion. Wars have been waged over religion and people have died because of it.
    It is a powerhouse that will not be denied for us or any other group of people it may seem to disenfranchise. We will never win the war of marriage. A civil union is just as well for my partner and I. It’s all in the verbiage. Just my opinion.

  6. andy says

    Articles like this (given to douchebags)are why I won’t renew my Advocate subscription.
    Andy, can’t you find some real news to post for us? Pretty please?

  7. galore says

    Pierre is evil because he called the work-hour police to harass Tom Ford trying to work his secretary for more hours than legal in France ??

    Sound like Pierre was trying to protect the secretary from Tom’s illegal demands.

  8. patrick says

    Would someone please hand fabulously gay Tom a history book?

    I know its alot to ask that you read, but give it a try.

    In the meantime, help yourself to the “colored only” drinking fountain…assuming it works and isn’t filthy. It’s just a name…

  9. TOM says

    Like he says, give us the same rights under the law, and call it what you will; a Civil Union, a Unification, Marriage but spell it backwards…whatever you call it doesnt matter to me either..just give me the same rights and privelages

  10. says

    Yikes, I really want to see “A Single Man” but in these excerpts Tom seems like such a prick. Like Nazis (Nazis, really?) for not allowing Tom to work people 24/7–please.

    I would be all for civil unions/partnerships for everyone–straight and gay–except that straight people, even the most non-religious ones, have no intention of giving up the word marriage. And words have meaning, both in a symbolic sense and in a legal sense. If and when DOMA is overturned, what will the implications be for states that have implemented something less than marriage? Marriage is universally understood. Religion doesn’t own the word, and to hand it over to them encourages the continued blurring of church and state.

    Don’t get me wrong, I’d rather every gay citizen in the US have CUs with federal benefits than to stubbornly cling to marriage or nothing, but we have a great example directly to our north–Canada–for how full civil marriage equality for all can work just fine. The only argument against this is the bogus religious one.

  11. Robert says

    I totally agree with Mr Ford. The word Marriage is a religious term. I dont care about religion and its rights from the government that is the important issue. Let straight call their union marriage who cares. Have you ever been to a boring wedding? I certainly dont want one of those.

  12. Frozen North says

    wow. People are jumping down his throat because of the “labor police” example. Do you really think it was just that? I can’t really believe that (especially in the fashion industry) that that’s all it would take for him to call them Nazis and Evil.

    You’re reading about someone’s personal experience, why are you second guessing it? Unless you know Yves et al personally, or were there in person of course…oh, but I’m guessing that isn’t the case.

  13. says

    Anyone who compares enforcement of labor laws to Nazis loses all credibility. Besides, why should I care what a fashion designer says about anything other than fashion?

  14. MDC says

    My favorite quote: “When I die no one will look at any of my collections and get any true sense of me.”

    No, Tom, they won’t, but they’ll get a true sense of YSL’s work from the late 60’s and 70’s. In his early days at Gucci Ford was more honest about his “inspirations.” Ford is an excellent stylist and merchandiser, but he was never a designer. It’s understandable YSL was resentful and paranoid, seeing his work is all copied from YSL’s own. Ford can say what he likes in private, but going public with criticism of YSL is a bit much.

    Sessums does a good job of setting him up and letting him hang himself.

  15. europeanguy says

    Voilà the typical stupid and greedy american who exploit people and doesn’t respect the rights of workers. Viva Yves Saint Laurent!

  16. jakeinlove says

    I have to agree with Tom. The rights are what’s more important than what it’s called and it’s going to be the thing that holds back equal rights to gays/lesbians – the use of the word marriage.
    Out of respect and tradition, let the religious keep the word of marriage and us use Civil Union (or whatever) as long as we have the same rights that is provided under marriage.

  17. Booka says

    Celebrity is such an ugly thing, as is the entilement, & opinions these self-serving monsters issue forth. If Tom Ford would show himself capable of openning his own can of tuna fish, by himself…then I’d listen to him.

  18. says

    I somewhat agree with Tom on “marriage,” but a straight, married, agnostic friend of mine told me “that word means something to me that has nothing to do with God. Why should we let the fundies have it?” And she’s right. Marriage is not solely a religious institution. It has long been a civil one as well.

    There are religions that have restrictions on marriage in place already. You often have to convert to be married in that faith. The Catholic Church doesn’t recognize divorce, etc. etc. etc. The only reason religious institutions are getting their knickers in a twist is they’re hiding behind the sacred cow of faith to justify bigotry.

  19. Zeke says

    People here are talking about two VERY different things here.

    Some people are saying that NO ONE should have a legal marriage and that ALL civilly recognized partnerships should be Civil Unions. I would be fine with that if that were even REMOTELY likely, or even possible. The fact of the matter is, that will NEVER happen. Straight people, who can’t understand why WE can’t be happy with something other than “marriage” since, when it applies to US is “no big deal” won’t for one minute settle for what they want us to settle for because in actuality THEY know that it IS a big deal.

    I might add that no one here who’s advocating for gay people not asking for equal marriage rights because “it’s a religious thing” seem to be either unaware or don’t care that there are MANY churches that WOULD perform marriages for same sex couples if they were allowed. Mine is one of them.

    The other group of people seem to be fine with straight people getting one CIVIL INSTITUTION and gay people getting a separate, SEGREGATED, other CIVIL INSTITUTION. Are those of you expressing support for this seriously saying that you believe that segregated civil institutions are just fine and dandy? REALLY? Perhaps growing up in Mississippi in the 1960’s has clouded my judgement when it comes to such things but I can’t believe I’m actually seeing people advocating such a thing, AND FOR THEMSELVES!

    It would be one thing if people were saying that they would be fine with Civil Unions as a STEP forward on the path to full equality. I would totally agree if that were the case, but I haven’t seen one person say that. All I’m seeing is people saying that they would be fine with a secondary system, or at least a segregated system, as the final product as long as it bestowed the same goodies. I really hope some of you will take a few moments, read a bit of history, rethink what your saying, and what you’re willing to settle for, and come to a different conclusion.

  20. says

    Exactly right, Zeke and Alex. Marriage is not solely “a religious term.” There are countless straight couples who marry and have no connection to religion or the church. Heterosexuals have actually been the ones to change marriage so that religion and even procreation are not essential to marriage. Ask straight couples why they are getting married and the majority will say, Love, no different than gay couples. The “tradition” of marriage is ever-evolving, and we didn’t start the changes–straight people did.

    Civil marriage equality already provides “respect” for religions by not infringing on the right of churches to marry whichever couples they please. It doesn’t infringe on their freedoms whatsoever; we need to be clear about this. Yet churches still want to infringe on our rights by interfering in our basic right to civil marriage. We are not the ones clinging to the word “marriage,” they are. If civil marriage and civil unions are the same, be rational, call them the same thing! The only reason to distinguish between them is to make one less than the other.

    As Zeke says, CUs can be an important step forward on the path to equality, as they were in VT. They provided a 10 year bridge to marriage during which gay couples had important protections. Better to have that compromise than nothing, but it is still a compromise and needs to be recognized as such. Personally, I would favor the option of having 2 systems for everyone, civil marriage for those who want it and domestic partnerships for those who prefer a more limited union. Religious ceremonies, for those who want them, should be between each couple and their church.

    Saying that churches own the word marriage basically equals saying that all straight couples–from bigoted fundamentalists to agnostics–are entitled to their special rights. They aren’t.