Milan Design Week: Hermes goodness

Beyond wrist and arm candy (in The Devil Wears Prada Miranda Priestly wears a white Hermes scarf around her wrist; in Le Divorce the Kelly Bag appears as a character much more glamorous than Naomi Watts and Kate Hudson; and of course we all know about the Birkin), Hermes is also known for its small fashion and home accessories.

Like these picnic gear from the Spring-Summer 2013 Objets collection:
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At Milan Design Week this year, Hermes launched its newest home collection, consisting of furniture, fabrics and wallpaper (the luxury brand launched its first full furniture collection in 2011, and went into wall units last year).
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There’s still some of that traditional equestrian touch if you look closely, but this new collection feels much younger and edgier than previous accessories, shapes and prints.

I loved the set-up in Brera last year, especially because of Shigeru Ban’s Module H, and from the pictures this year, could only wish to have seen the presentation in person. Home collection launches and the occasional Hermes-sponsored art exhibit openings are the only time I can ever touch and absorb the Hermes goodness…oh, and when I receive the magazine/catalogue in the mail.
Images courtesy Hermes

From crisis response to luxury walls

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I first heard of Shigeru Ban from my former professor and boss, Dan Silvestre, when he wrote about the Japanese architect’s paper tube architecture for the section I was editing in my first design magazine job.

Shigeru Ban developed this temporary, modular shelter solution out of recycled cardboard paper tubes as a quick and cheap response for those stricken homeless by natural disasters. The closest I got to him was calling up his office long-distance to follow up on the pictures we needed for publication. You cannot imagine the amount of fan-girl squeals I emitted when the package “from Shigeru Ban” came addressed to me.

At Fuorisalone this year, in the arts & design district of Brera, Hermes launched Module H by Shigeru Ban. It’s luxury DIY wall cladding, if you ask me to explain in a nutshell: you can customize your own wall design according to the modular components you get. Those tiny “H” cutouts are not just for branding; they were designed like grooves for the “H” tongues of the cladding to fit into.

Being Hermes, you can expect the modules to be of velvety leathers, horse-print jacquards and metallic croc-skins.