Hermès Homme: Performance broadcast from the world’s greatest furniture warehouse
The architecture was almost as much a star as the clothes in the latest "performance broadcast" by the esteemed house of Hermès, which unveiled its Fall 2021 collection for men on Saturday.
Hermès was by far the biggest brand showing on the fifth day of a six-day 68-brand Paris menswear season, which, due to the pandemic, is taking place entirely online.
And the location was pretty ideal for the collection, as polished an example of classy modern menswear as one can imagine in 2021, and one in keeping with the current zeitgeist. Lockdown leisure clothing where comfort, not cool, is of the essence.
Teaming up for the second season with filmmaker Cyril Teste, the house’s menswear designer Véronique Nichanian staged her show video inside the Mobilier National, a massive multi-story modernist structure by architect Auguste Perret, the master of reinforced concrete. The space houses valuable furniture from ministerial buildings, and its rectangular stairwells, geometric metal railings and opaque glass walls were an ideal setting for these smart, swish clothes.
Shearling jerkins with reverse panels, Baracuta jackets with prominent zips, natty chesterfields, deerskin smocks and party shirts – all had the signature Hermès high-end allure. Plus, Véronique showed some great pants, cut with a beveled thigh and split at the ankle
Besides being a great self-editor, Nichanian is a first-rate colorist. In a season of plaid her tartans looked the freshest – in particular the pale blue and putty windcheaters worn with matching vests.
Handsome guys hanging out inside the light-filled building as the music by Emmanuel Jessua built to a synth climax with "Cape Town" by Sides.
Nichanian, however, should probably consider revamping her casting. Too many ideal future son-in-laws can get dull. And a fair few of the sneakers were decidedly twee.
That said, the clothes looked ready made for the kind of smart guys who have just taken a Silicon Valley unicorn public, as they truly reek of discrete luxury.
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