Japanese philosophy helps find the beauty in imperfection for luxury goods
Hermès‘ flagship store on Bond Street in London is embracing the concept of upcycling with a project known as “Petit h,” which sees factory leftovers and defective inventory turned into completely new creations. The project stems from a Japanese concept called wabi-sabi, in which imperfections of nature are viewed as assets of beauty. Installed by British designer Faye Toogood, the exhibition means the store has been stripped of many of its signature items for the first time.
“The idea is to create exceptional objects that are unique in their spirit of invention and in the quality of their execution,” explains Pascale Mussard, the sixth-generation descendant of the Hermès family who made the project possible.
At petit h, a laboratory of re-creation, we test our limits in terms of shapes, materials, colours and techniques. We recreate, resew, renovate, remake, reinvent.
Mussard had to convince her family first, who gave her six months to bring them around to the idea. She worked with the designer Gilles Jonemann on around 100 prototypes, and as you can see from the pictures, managed to turn odds and ends into some unexpected treasures.