The Hermès secret


I was at a talk by Mrs. Moneypenny, a columnist for the FT, a while ago. Amongst other things, she mentioned that there’s a special book published by Hermès on how to tie a scarf, but you don’t get it unless you specifically ask for it when you buy one. I don’t own anything by Hermès myself but I was able to find evidence on the web that such a thing does exist, which led me to thinking what a nice story it was, and potentially something that can be passed on from mother to daughter for generations, if it was limited edition or something. They’re quite in demand – I think they stopped making the book and now offer a box of cards instead, which are being sold on eBay (for accessible prices though, may I add).

Hermès are also apparently working on a series of short films about the craftsmen behind their products: the leather cutter, saddler, glass-maker, colourist and so on. They are organising screenings across the world, and you can sign up to receive updates to know when they make it available in your country. Their YouTube channel has a bunch of the short videos. This one’s the latest.

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Social souvenir

Social Souvenir is apparel design and interaction in one. Imagine wearing a shirt and later on, going home, logging into the web and seeing where the other people who had the same T-shirt lived, on something like Google Maps.  
Well, designer Sebastian Campion has done precisely that in collaboration with the Museum of Contemporary Art in Roskilde, Denmark. Intriguing. 

Fashion at the Olympics

From the New York Times, take a look at this cool slideshow, which also has a running commentary, (no embed code available, sorry) depicting various contingents marching at the Olympics Opening Ceremony last Friday, and their relationship with fashion. Did you know that Canadian sportswear company Roots sponsored the US Olympic team in 2002, and this year it was Ralph Lauren? The outfits were inspired, ostensibly, by the 1981 classic movie Chariots of Fire. Australia even had the influence of Prada in theirs!

Uniqlo’s UT range

Been noticing posters advertising T-shirts like this all over London tube stations (mostly). Uniqlo’s UT project has some serious publicity material pushing its case – so much so that I was curious enough to find out what it was about. It’s this. Essentially, if you’re tired of seeing someone else on the road/train/bus wearing exactly the same T-shirt, then Uniqlo has got artwork by Eighties artists Keith Haring and Jean-Michel Basquiat, and even Manga-inspired designs, on their latest range of tees to change that. And no, they haven’t ignored men or anything.

Mickey Manga!

Paris, London, Milan….centres of fashion all. Add one more to the list: New Delhi. At the recent Wills Lifestyle India Fashion Week, designer Manish Arora incorporated Mickey Mouse and designs from Japanese artist Keiichi Tanaami to create a line that was by far one of the more outlandish ones at the event. Arora’s clothes are known for their colorful, in-your-face fashion elements. This particular Autumn-Winter line probably took the cake as far as his own designs are concerned.

Arora began a collaboration with Reebok in India a few years ago, and launched his Fish Fry line of sneakers, which were encrusted with Swarovski crystals and rhinestones, and were sold in Western markets like New York as well. That was probably the first instance of a designer-sports brand collaboration in India. I think it is still the only instance.

Anyway, back to the present and it looks like Arora is right on target with his line. Japanese manga is all the rage globally, after all.

India’s designers are certainly moving with the times.