On a balmy Saturday evening in late June Hermès presented a sophisticated and considered collection that went down like a cool mint julep on a hot summer's day. And just like the julep, which has maintained its charm over the decades, so too has the work of the brand’s menswear designer Véronique Nichanian.
“I like to make clothes that can exist by themselves. They are like objects, and Hermès is a house of objects after all,” said the designer. "It's the definition of something very modern, which I have be doing for 25 years."
Nichanian has a very clear understanding of her role in fashion: to give men clothing staples that will stand the test of time and changing styles. Her offerings are all about subtle changes, designs that will fold easily into an existing wardrobe, that “play nicely with others".
If the reaction of many of the row guests is any indication, she once again got the luxe formula just right this season. A man might not have known walking into the show that he needed (not wanted, but needed) a pair of gray goatskin sweatpants, a striped mint green blouson jacket crafted out of water snake or a reversible two-button jacquard blazer covered in flowers and stripes. He certainly did by the time the show was over.
The attention to detail was exquisite, as always. A summer jacket would come with just a slice of elastic at the waist to pull the fabric closer to the body. The house's signature silk scarves surfaced as belts, a number of jackets were reversible, and horizontally-ribbed sweaters carried easy button up necklines.
“Clothes speak to me and I try to give this confidence to men and a new elegance,” said Nichanian. Mission accomplished.