Thursday, 15 March 2012

Hermès Carré

The Hermès Scarf, which has already become a legend, was produced and appeared in 1928, inspired by Napolean’s soldiers and is still the aristocratic accessory.It is a symbol of belonging to the upper stratum of society, with collectors, connoisseurs and has a long and interesting history.

Beginning in 1837, Thierry Hermès produced harnesses and saddles for horses of privileged members of society. Over time, the collection of enriched shoes, jewelry and home furnishings expanded. In 1920, the grandson of Thierry, Emil added a line of accessories Hermes luggage. In the early 1900s Emil handed the family business into the hands of his son Louis-Philippe. Young, but confident of the company he decided to change the direction of several family businesses and began producing the so-called "little things for the golden youth." The rich and wealthy people love to travel, to go hunting,riding. Therefore, in addition to expensive luggage, shoes and cars, they need have been memorable parts of the image.This is the way in 1928 and got the first square scarf Hermes.

The first scarf was created inspired by the soldiers of Napoleon's army: who wore distinctive scarves around their necks. Louis-Philippe perfected the idea and tried to make it fashionable.Ten years later, in 1937, settling in Lyon, the production has gained unprecedented momentum, and initiated the era of Hermès Carré.

Work on the new history of silk and it's embodiment extends from six months to a year: during this time scarf design is worked out a to the smallest detail, it is analyzed how a scarf would look in the unfolded state, and on the neck, tied in various ways.  Only after this decision, it will join a collection of stories in the Hermès story. Painstaking work of the artist on his brainchild rewarded: on each product, besides protecting Hermès against counterfeit labels,the artist's name is always recorded.Sometimes these three notes are encrypted so bizarrely that it requires special attention to find them. There are 50 carré designers, contributions also came from artists like H. Matisse and  J. Albers.

Hermès issues two carré collections each year. Half are new designs, half are re-colored classics.
Carrés are printed using multiple silk screens, one screen for each color. Once a project is approved, the carré designers carries a pattern on the stencil, separations are involved, for each color requires a special plate. Sometimes to create a veil should be about 40 plates, so their choice  is very time-consuming and difficult. Connoisseurs know that the smaller the image on the cloth and the more unique it is.

Selection of colors for the pattern - also not an easy task, and is dealt by a team of specialists. Their palette is about 75 000 primary colors, when combined, they create new ones. Colors are mixed by hand and sometimes carré designers have to try some fifty different combinations before they can achieve the desired result. For each specific pattern 10-15 colors variants are selected  .

The factory, which produces scarves is located in Lyon, the silk center of France. Silk cocoons, from which subsequently thread and silk are woven fabric, imported from Brazil. From the Chinese silk, the quality of which can be very good or very bad, depending on the province on which it is grown, it was decided 6 to 8 weeks are required to prepare for silk screens and colors.
Printing the picture is on a roll of silk, stretched on a table length of 100 meters, where both may be in the 100 scarves. The Master printmaker laminates silk in alternate plates of different colors. Excess of thick paint carefully removed by hand. After this series of operations is carried forth the colors, making them brighter and stronger. Carrés are printed using multiple silk screens, one screen for each color.
The final stage - the hems on the front side are all hand-stitched, it takes 30 to 45 minutes to finish one carré.When the process is completed (the carré designers makes two to four copies of each color), the product must pass strict control. If spotted with an error the scarf is burned as the quality must be impeccable.
After almost 9 to 12 months of research and development of design, a scarf can be wrapped in tissue paper and put it in its original orange box.

Vivien Solari for Hermes FW 1999

Popular Collection of "Feathers", "Keys", "Spurs" are constantly updated and reissued, and thus considered to be eternal accessories that never go out of fashion.


Hermes Campaign J'aime Mon Carré (I Love My Scarf)


  1. This is a great article. Thank you for sharing.

  2. You're welcome and thanks for visiting my blog.


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