Just a step from the entrance to one of Warsaw’s most refined and elegant hotels, Hotel Europejski, which is located in the historic Old Town district of the city (known as Krakowskie Przemieście), a very special opening took place a couple of days ago. It’s the first ever Hermès store in Poland. The light-filled, dripped in tones of honey, burgundy and beige interior was designed by the Paris-based RDAI interior design studio and is furnished in a signature, equestrian style, which is distinct to Hermès house codes. The marble floor is a black & white checkerboard, the furniture is all about French design classics, while the metallic screen displays silk and cashmere carré scarves and shawls (the bold Animapolis edition by Jan Bajtlik is its star!). Behind, you will see the iconic bags, and one of them will strike you the most: the Birkin designed especially for the Warsaw store, with a trompe l’oeil store façade intarsia. Take a few steps back, and to the right you will find a selection of Nadège Vanhee-Cybulski’s chic and terrifically luxurious womenswear and menswear; to the left, the store is supplied with homeware (think porcelain and blankets), fine jewellery and perfumes which are sold exclusively in Hermès flagship boutiques. In the past, I would never believe a brand like Hermès will open its doors (here, I emphasize a separate store, not just a ‘box’ in some department store…) in Poland. So believe me, visiting the brick-and-mortar space for the first time was an experience filled with excitement and… a kind of pride.
Krakowskie Przedmieście 13 / Warsaw
Photos by Edward Kanarecki.
For spring-summer 2020, Magda Butrym does her thing in the best possible way. The Polish designer looks at the East through her own, idiosyncratic perspective, creating the modern-day “Slavic romance” – even suited for a client who not necessarily has much to do with the region. Her signature, sharp-shouldered silhouettes beautifully define her mini dresses and vintage-y tailoring (just take a look at the masculine, silk coat in polished white to see the sharpness I’m talking about). Florals take center stage, either as reworked folk prints or an incredible 3-D sculptural bodice that stands away from the body to resemble a rose in full bloom. The pleated, long-sleeved dress in bold pink is equally appealing. Butrym’s love for folk is never too literal in her work, but the previously mentioned Slavic romance she manages to incorporate in her fashion is always charming and heart-warming (especially for Poles like me who really wish Polish labels embraced its local heritage – without falling into folklore clichées, of course).
Collage by Edward Kanarecki.
Three places you’ve got to visit when in Warsaw…
Mood Scent Bar
It’s not your average store with perfumes. Here, you will discover the world’s most niche fragrances, from the pret-a-porter to haute couture ones. Whether its D.S. & Durga’s Amber Kiso or Orto Parisi’s Boccanera or Stora Skuggan’s Moonmilk, each fragrance sold at Mood Scent Bar tells a unique story. Other than perfumes, you will find here Astier de Villatte’s stationery and Mariage Frères’ delightful teas.
ul. Bracka 3 (they have two more spots).
Possibly the most magical place in Warsaw. The owners really sell what they love, from Jamin Puech’s artisan bags to Justyna Górecka’s beautiful, hand-made plates. Today, it’s a growing rarity to find a store that has such a sense of curation. Big love. The store is currently having it’s pop-up at Concept 21 in Poznań!
ul. Mokotowska 42/44
Luxury vintage is rather a dead topic in Poland. It’s often a random splatter of Zanottis, Pleins, occasional fakes and God knows what else. Well, until I’ve discovered Alicja Napiórkowska’s Image House, which is the ultimate exception. Good, old Céline, Rick Owens, Yves Saint Laurent, Comme Des Garçons… brilliant.
Ul. Mokotowska 52
All photos by Edward Kanarecki.
Here’s a little throwback to our trip to the Baltic Sea back from May… fresh, breezy air, daffodils, forest walks, crayfish for lunch, more forest walks. I really feel like I need this sort of detox again!
All photos by Edward Kanarecki.
For a moment, let’s switch from resort look-books and New York’s off-the-schedule runways to Warsaw’s socrealist icon – Palace of Culture. Few days ago, Natalia Maczek and Tomek Wirski did their spring-summer 2019 runway show for the first time in Warsaw. MISBHV stands for so many things: to some, it’s a go-to streetwear label favoured by the big names (Kylie and all). For others, it’s an internationally recognized label that sells in stores among Vetements and Raf Simons. And the other others (like my friends, for instance) know it for great hoodies with intriguing prints.
This season, however, Maczek and Wirski wanted to explore new fields and do something different than usual. Having deep interests in the Polish 50s and 60s, the designers immersed themselves in a theme that doesn’t come up to you instantly when thinking of the brand. Jazz, or rather “Polish Jazz” (as the collection’s name suggests), became the season’s key-point. Moreover, MISBHV invited Rosław Szaybo, the legendary Polish graphic designer (who did album covers for Miles Davis, Janis Joplin and, of course, the cult “Polish Jazz” series) to collaborate on the prints. Blurring the lines between womenswear and menswear, the label’s latest offering includes flowing dresses, over-sized blazers, bike shorts, PVC coats and headscarves (a beautiful nod to Slavic culture!). But there are MISBHV classics as well, like the WARSZAWA print or friendly-to-the-public t-shirts. Polish fashion keeps on evolving, slowly, but it does. And seeing brands like MISBHV having such progress, and executing their visions so well, makes me really proud.
Collage by Edward Kanarecki featuring Wojciech Plewiński’s photograph of Warsaw; Rosław Szaybo’s album covers.