Seamstresses at Yves Saint Laurent's haute couture workshop were celebrating on Monday after a judge ruled in their favour in a legal row with billionaire Francois Pinault over the famous couture atelier's future.

Pinault's holding firm, Artemis, had asked the appeal court to quash an earlier ruling in favour of YSL's works council after it took steps to sue it over claims it was purposely delaying a decision on the sale to French fashion giant SLPB.

Under French law, the work's council has to give a view on the deal but despite weeks of talks, has yet to make that decision public - infuriating Artemis and leading to claims its actions have prejudiced the sale.

But the judge's ruling on Friday has supported the seamstresses and milliners who are opposing the sale as they fear they will be contracted out to other fashion companies or lose their jobs altogether.