Saturday, January 17, 2009

Collection FW2007: Jardins d'Hiver

This Christmas I received the most unexpected gift: a visit from a very dear friend of mine, from France, who was en route to New York via Toronto when many US-bound flights were grounded due to safety and security concerns in the air. So seeing him, after so many years, and indulging him in tourist activities was like a garden that blossoms following a long process of cultivation. "Jardins d'hiver" (winter gardens") captures beautiful this feeling, depicting seven gardens around the world that enchant the visitor with sights, aromas and sounds, reminding us of the majesty and beauty of nature. Created by Annie Faivre as issued in 2007/2008, this scarf illustrates artistic compositions with details from seven distinct gardens: the mythical Hanging Gardens of Babylon, a medieval labyrinth of topiaries, the gardens of the Villa Borghese in Rome, the Majorelle in Marrakesh; the Alhambra in Grenada (Spain), the Taj Mahal gardens and finally the Heian Garden in Kyoto.

It is a very gracious scarf that wears absolutely beautifully, and when it evoques such strong sentiments, it has an even stronger impact.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Collection FW2007: Fleurs d'hiver

Today I woke up to a snow-covered city (or at least neighbourhood) and I remembered how pretty - pure, immaculate and simply beautiful - the snow makes everything appear, covering all the dirt and giving one the illusion that everything is indeed pure. Today's post marks the beginning of a series of scarves dedicated to the season and holiday spirit. I took a liking to this scarf a while back, and while I never played with the scarf itself, it never ceases to exude a fairy-tale feeling; in addition, it ties beautifully and would make a fabulous accessory for those who believe in discreet impact. The name - "fleurs d'hiver" ("winter flowers") suggests the delicate flower-like shapes of snow flakes. The pattern is pretty geometric - suggestive of the science behind the perfect appearance of snow flakes, adorned with rain-deer, flowers and naturally snow flakes.

This particular colour design is interesting for the brown hues it uses, although the black border is too severe for me and definitely tones down the uplifting induced by the theme or season. There is, however, a palpable harmony in this design that really caught my eye. Perhaps a little tradition due to its geometric sequences, but definitely wonderful.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Collection SS2004: Cheval Surprise

In keeping with the holiday spirit, I thought it wise to start the year with a scarf that echoes the wonderful display of fireworks that celebrate an accomplishment or mark new beginnings.

I took note of this scarf when it was first released, several years back, without understanding the significance of its title, or the intrinsic message of the design. Since I channeled my passion for scarves and my energy to understand and share the beauty of each, I paid closer attention to this scarf and realized how fascinating the design actually is. On closer inspection the ink-blot design, remiscent of Jackson Pollock's creations, reveals horses, horseback riders, carriages and drivers - each one in a dynamic pose (check each corner, plus the areas between them). The author is the very talented Dimitri Rybaltchenko, the son of another designer in the service of Hermes, Vladimir Rybaltchenko (who is connected by marriage to yet another one of Hermes famous designers, Phillipe Ledoux).

A true visual feast, which I'm only too happy to have added to my modest collection (in the gavroche size), thanks to a kind and sensible person in my favourite country, Japan, who since became a close friend. Thank you MF-san !

So here's to the hope a new year brings and to new beginnings !!

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Collection FW2004: Noel au 24 Faubourg

An all-time classic, "Noel au 24 Faubourg" ("Christmas at 24, Faubourg") depicts the Maison's Paris flagship boutique at No. 24 in an apparent snow globe (with the accompanying snowflakes peacefully making their way onto the ground). The globe is surrounded by snow-covered pin tree branches. Of amazement are the ornaments on these branches, in the shape of elves in different poses, some playful, some enjoying winter sports. The ubiquitous - and emblematic - "bolduc" (a thin ribbon or thread, now associated with "gift ribbon") adds a discreet touch while its curls further enhance the spirit of celebration and playfulness - and evoking magical childhood memories.

This design, created by Dimitri Rybaltchenko in Fall/Winter 2004 and reissued in Fall/Winter 2006 in 45cm pochette and 90cm cashmere/silk, has been highly popular and a sought-after collectible.