Follies of the Sky

Every Hermès scarf tells a story.

FOLIES DU CIEL (Follies of the Sky) “is a beautifully whimsical depiction of some more unusual, yet invariably historical, modes of aviation.”

Madness on the part of the aeronauts who risked their lives, and mad expenditures on the part of the subscribers and spectators who financed such exploits. On November 21st, 1783, Etienne de Montgolfier’s aerostat flew over Paris for 25 minutes. Alas, the balloons on this scarf did not all experience such celestial glory. Many remained at the project stage and are now among the archives preserved in the terrestrial silence of the Invalides Museum.

~ Hermès Spring 1994 scarf booklet

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“Designed by Loic Dubigeon, a wonderful Hermès artist, also responsible for such beloved designs as Fantaisies Indiennes, Zodiaque, Salzbourg, and Jeux d’Ombres, among many others. Originally issued in 1984, the design has become a classic and been reissued several times, including as a 90 cm carré in 1990, 1994, and 2009, as well as a mousseline shawl and a twilly in other seasons.” Mine is the glorious 35″ by 35″ (90 x 90 cm) size.

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I found a rare colourway of the design on Ebay: “against the crisp white background glow many different bright colours, with the greens, navy blues, pinks, and reds predominating. Like some of the best Hermès creations, it can be tied in many different ways, to emphasise the blues, reds, and whites, or the greens and the pinks.”

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“The small, folded care tag and the copyright style date this scarf to the original 1984 issue—and it is rare to find the 32-year-old beauty in pristine, unworn, crisp condition.” A true vintage find.

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“The old-style care tag is present, the fabric is stiff, full, and crisp, the hand-rolled hems are tight and plump, the original folds and shape are preserved.”

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A silk scarf is one of the best accessories a woman can own: it’s a classic and timeless wardrobe staple that elevates any outfit—even jeans and a white shirt— from ordinary to très chic. It also brightens the face, adds the perfect polished finishing touch to an outfit, is endlessly versatile, costs less than a Birkin, and stylishly conceals any signs of ageing of the neck. Take it from the French; for women-of-a-certain-age, a scarf is an essential.

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A Hermès scarf is a marvellous collaboration of art and fashion.

In all, the French company has roughly 50 freelance artists at a time designing new scarves, with the aim of producing 20 new designs per year. The designs are central for Hermès, which sprinkles the patterns and colours throughout its collections of ready-to-wear clothing, accessories and housewares.

… After a painstaking printing process—it takes 750 hours on average to engrave the screens for printing each design—the scarves are cut from lengths of cloth and hand-rolled with tiny stitches around the edges. One seamstress rolls about seven scarves per day, depending on size and material.

~ Christina Binkley, Every Scarf Has A Story, The Wall Street Journal

These tales in a swatch of cloth are endlessly alluring.

PURCHASED FROM EBAY SELLER: Spring In Paris Silk

Photos and some text courtesy Spring In Paris Silk.

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Susan Written by:

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