Hermès spotlights leather
It was at the Tennis Club de Paris – transformed into a luxurious space covered entirely in powder pink velvet for the occasion – that Hermès unveiled its collection for Spring/Summer 2020 on Saturday evening. This season's wardrobe was almost entirely focused on leather, the French luxury house's core business, saddlery and leather goods accounting for more than half of the brand's revenues.
"The house's craftsmanship and savoir-faire are the main theme of this collection. I used techniques specific to ready-to-wear, which I transposed onto leather goods," explained Nadège Vanhee-Cybulski to FashionNetwork.com after a much-applauded runway show.
To create a more flexible, lightweight version of the material, which is generally heavier than fabric, the designer worked with "tight or perforated, double-sided leather without stiffeners, in order to guarantee maximum lightness for the clothes."
The wide, flowing trousers in perforated leather seemed to have been tailored in mesh –of the ultralight kind used in sportswear – and perfectly illustrated the technical prowess of this collection, which, better than ever, celebrated the French house's spirit, subtly combining discreet luxury and timeless elegance.
Trim the excess
Lighter, simpler, pared-down: these are the principles that guided the brand's creative director this season. The silhouettes were uncomplicated to the point that they were almost austere, with short, flared dresses in shades of black or rust sharing the catwalk with ensembles featuring pleated skirts in soft, smooth leather. Another noteworthy look paired a sleeveless top in green nubuck with black lambskin pants.
Vanhee-Cybulski coupled dark leather suit jackets with miniskirts, sending out calfskin or suede safari jackets with maxi-pockets, each decorated with a rectangular metal buckle, and lab coat-like white leather dresses. She also wrapped coats delicately around models' bodies, adding lambskin inserts and sleeves to gabardines.
Spartan sandals brought a touch of light airiness to the sober, almost masculine aesthetic, as did the open-backed vests, the tight mesh micro-shorts, the playsuits and the pixelated packsacks, used to accessorise looks and give them a sportier edge.
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