PARIS – Patou launches into leather goods with the launch of its first handbag, with solid ecological credentials.
While the French fashion label has offered wicker baskets before, like the one sported by French actress Camille Razat in the second season of ‘Emily in Paris’, this is the first time it’s ventured into the leather work.
“We didn’t want to rush it,” art director Guillaume Henry told WWD. “We wanted a bag that was positive in its design, both in terms of everyday use, but also in terms of production and raw material.”
The bags are made from dormant leather stocks, with the first drop available in eight colors, each in a limited, numbered edition of 30, 60 or 100 pieces, depending on availability. In addition to black, brown, cinnamon and poppy red, there are gourmet shades like yellow, dusty pink, fuchsia and sky blue, the latter available exclusively online.
In the shape of a semicircle, the Le Patou bag has a cut-out flap in the shape of the letter J or P, depending on the direction of rotation of the bag, in reference to the initials of the founder of the Jean Patou brand.
His monogram also appears on the bag’s metal closure, while the circular hardware securing the strap was revived from the ’80s when Christian Lacroix was the brand’s artistic director, Henry said.
“It’s as if the whole philosophy of the house was summed up in a single product,” said the designer, who is now entering his sixth season at the helm of the historic brand. “We took the time to make a bag that people would want to keep for a long time.”
Le Patou launches Wednesday the Patou.com and with 30 business partners around the world, priced at 950 euros, or $1,250. Distribution will be expanded to 100 retailers for the second season, with colors renewed twice a year.
Patou, owned by luxury conglomerate LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton, is committed to limiting its environmental footprint, with initiatives such as eco-designed packaging, clothing and store fixtures. For example, the hangers are made from 100% recycled materials consisting of a mixture of wood and recycled polypropylene.
Environmentally friendly materials, including organic cotton and recycled polyester and wool, make up more than a third of the ready-to-wear collection. The products are accompanied by a QR code that allows buyers to find information on the origin of each piece, from the original sketch to production.
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