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  • © Studio Toogood

  • © Studio Toogood

  • © Studio Toogood

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Petit h installation by Studio Toogood for Hermès

Studio Toogood, founded by British designer Faye Toogood, was chosen by Hermès to design a pop up installation in their New Bond Street store in London, inspired by the brand´s Petit h division. Petit h is a limited edition series that uses discarded and leftover Hermès materials to create unique, utterly transformed pieces, based on the concept of upcycling. Hermès Petit h was established in 2010 by Pascale Mussard, co-artistic director of the luxury brand, as an initiative to give a new life and a new meaning to what is often considered as of no use. The project received ravishing reviews and a more than enthusiastic response from Hermès devotees and recently, after having traveled to Tokyo and New York, finally found a permanent home at the house´s Paris store. “The idea is to create exceptional objects that are unique in their spirit of invention and in the quality of their execution”, explained Pascale Mussard to Wallpaper “At Petit h, a laboratory of re-creation, we test our limits in terms of shapes, materials, colors and techniques. We recreate, resew, renovate, remake, reinvent.”

Studio Toogood transformed the entire ground floor of the New Bond Street flagship store into a custom-designed and blood inspired interior that contrasts with West End slickness. Faye Toogood explains the whole process: “In keeping with Petit h’s theme of exuberant reinvention, the utilitarian white space repurposed the distinctive shapes and templates of signature Hermès bags for a series of sculptural displays in glossy leather and resin. Meanwhile, the windows pay homage to the petit h craftsmen. A tool from each of the trades scaled up in linear neon and set against dramatic drapes assembled from offcuts and remnants of the house’s iconic silk scarves and bound together with scarlet-pigmented resin.” Studio Toogood even created special uniforms for the staff from discarded Hermès material that were dyed red and dipped in resin, hanging from meat hooks. The avant-garde installation is an ode to the legacy of an iconic house that never stopped experimenting with forms and techniques, relentlessly pushing the boundaries of craftsmanship and materials.

Faye Toogood still remembers her first visit to the Petit h workshop in Pantin, near Paris, where she discovered a Hermès pattern that later became the main inspiration for her installation : “Stacks of dyed hides, horsehair, scarves, gloves and leather fittings were being turned around into playful art objects. The piece that caught my eye was a leather off-cut of a signature Hermès bag pattern – the hide was a skeleton of the negative shapes left after the pattern cutters had cut the intricate shapes. It was so inspiring to see a person working within such an established house, finding beauty in the unexpected.” Studio Toogood´s bold and unexpected take on Petit h is a definite show stopper, the perfect antidote to the boring and uninspired holiday window displays.

From November 20th to December 7th, at Hermès, 155 New Bond Street, W1, London