Wednesday, December 14, 2011

House for Hermès

I am so pleased with this collaboration that I welled up. Seriously, I am so proud of our boys from Delaware.

Mickey Drexler noted in his New Yorker profile, Hermès was the only brand that he could think of that delivered on the luxury promise. Hermès is one of my favorite brands even though I don't own a single item from their storied line. And crazypants House is a perfect fit. Who else would Hermès Japan pick to work with?

Interestingly, lots of current House collaborations seem to be Japan based. To risk a cultural stereotype, I truly believe that the Japanese have a handle on understanding the core value of products and brands.

Often, companies embarrass themselves when they do a retro take and miss the point. It ends up being a pastiche and points out in Technicolor that they never understood the value in the first place. It is a risk they probably don't understand. They could have done an original bad design and the only harm would have been bad design. Not a crime as there is plenty of bad design. I'm guilty of bad design.

But, to mess with a classic and get it wrong, that harms their company and throws mud on the original. Sure, that Saarinen chair is perfect and untouchable in a pure world, but you can only see so many knock-offs without influencing the original.

Hermès has the daunting job of redefining their own classics. They have over a hundred and fifty years of superlative taste and exquisite craftsmanship. And when the Japanese store needs the best, they get the best. That's why I am so proud of my brothers at House. 

"...when we make and sell something in Japan, it has to be REAL, or else the buyer isn't truly satisfied." -- James Jebbia, founder Supreme
House for Hermès