Cover Photo: Camille Vivier / Courtesy of Hermès

It’s all in the incredible details of Hermès’ Hors-Série 2021 savoir-faire women’s ready-to-wear collection

Few brands are able to get true luxury lovers in a tizzy, and Hermès is exactly one of those.

Far from loud, logomania-ed statements, creative director Nadège Vanhée-Cybulski’s vision for the French luxury label relies instead on a meticulous—some would say, obsessive—attention to detail that lends itself a quiet authority and strength, whether it’s hanging on the rack or worn on a woman’s body. This thought ran through our heads when we laid eyes on the Hors-Série 2021 savoir-faire women’s ready-to-wear collection—a love story to the beauty of detail, really—of strict looks in black and white.

The sparseness of colour belies the incredible work and time spent to craft each piece. For example, the delicate Bayeux lace found on deceptively simple blouses were fashioned from an ancient technique of using a pair of spindles to twist and spin the fabric into its final form; the beadwork and minuscule glass glitter embroidery were done by hand following traditional techniques; and embroidery on some of the pieces was created using the traditional Lunéville hook and needle technique—a punishingly painstaking process that allows artisans to create intricate patterns.

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Sumptuous materials were also another way Vanhée-Cybulski flexed her deep understanding and appreciation of quality. The pieces in the Hors-Série 2021 collection were crafted from lambskin, cotton and calfskin—all materials that the Hermès customer can move, dance and breathe in.

“I like to challenge gravity and play with the way you cut a fabric, the way you direct it,” Vanhée-Cybulski told us in a 2018 interview.  “The straight grain has a more controlled attitude, whereas the bias cut is more feminine, it waits for its owner before taking its final shape—then it comes alive.”

This ethos can be clearly seen throughout the Hors-Série 2021 collection, with its fluid dresses and skirts, soft double-faced cashmere coats and capes, and structured tops that would be perfect for all-climes and conditions. With the world opening up, these are clothes one will need to protect oneself against the uncertainties ahead—“clothes for an Amazon,” the brand says.

“The world to come needs patterns, generosity and nobility,” the press notes add. “And more than anything, it needs élan.” What could be more quintessentially French than that?

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