You may equate luxury house Hermès with its ever-iconic Birkin bag, but the French heritage brand also has a long history in silk, namely in its iconic and whimsical silk scarves. To honor that legacy, the Hermès Carré Club, a pop-up exhibit is now open in New York at 459 West 14th street. If you're NYC-based, you can visit the space September 13th-16th, from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. (for free!). Following the NYC debut, the shop will also stop over in Toronto, Singapore, L.A. and Milan.
The Carré Club is divided into six interactive areas where visitors can see live demonstrations by artists, visit a cafe, and shop limited edition scarves — which is pretty much what you do every weekend, right? The space, which was imagined by Bali Barret, artistic director of the Hermès women’s collections, is equal parts whimsical and engaging — and named after the French word for square.
Though Hermès was founded in 1837 as a workshop for horse harnesses, the brand later built a reputation as a luxury purveyor of leather goods, and in 1937 debuted its first silk scarves. Since then, the scarves have been worn by everyone from Jackie O. to Queen Elizabeth II. According to Hermès, colorists can choose from 75,000 colors, and a 30-color design can take 400-600 hours to engrave. To date, the brand has produced an impressive 1500-plus unique carrés in collaboration with artists from around the world.
Read on for a look at the exhibit, and in case you can't make it, you can shop some of the scarves, which are available online.
When guests arrive, they visit Carré Click and Check, where they receive a membership card and take an official portrait. (Consider this the gateway to all things Hermès.)
Colorful tiles line the walls, giving a peek into the palette of the iconic scarves. Guests have the opportunity to interact and see up close the work that goes into creating these screen-printed designs.
When it comes time to think about souvenirs, you'll want to visit Carrémania, the designated boutique area of the pop-up. There, you can pick up exclusive styles produced only for the special space.
At the Carré studio, guests can check out artists in action as they go about their work. You can sit for a portrait session, and watch artists sketch, illustrate, and improvise, all inspired by the iconic scarves.
The Carré Cafe is the spot to stop by if post-shopping you're in need of a sandwich and coffee. An added bonus: You can enjoy live music and cabaret-style entertainment.
The cleverly named Carré-OK space is the pop-up area where you can get creative by doing your best opera impression to songs inspired by silk scores.