Loewe’s Commitment to Craft
There just seems to be no shortage of reasons to fall in love with Spanish luxury design house Loewe, which for over 100 years, has been redefining luxe fashion and haute couture as handmade and finely crafted. What started as a family run collective craft shop in 1948 in Madrid, has grown into a full fledged fashion house, showing at fashion weeks around the world, and offering an impressive line of their staple leather goods, as well as men and womenswear. What I love about Loewe though, is that they never forget their history, striving to maintain the integrity of the craft in everything they produce.
In the last few years the iconic line has been seeing a bit of a revamp by creative director Jonathan Anderson, who was the major influence behind the eye-catching furniture collection that debuted last year at Salone del Mobile in Milan. The idea for the collection was to be “made by real people, not machines,” Anderson told Architectural Digest. The result was a fabulous collection of handcrafted wooden furniture with colorful leather details applied to the surface, as an update on the age-old technique of marquetery. The line pulled inspiration from these techniques, while updating them with wild colors and modernist illustrations and patterns.
The Loewe Foundation also launched the innovative Craft Prize, now in its third cycle, which is about “both newness & tradition.” Overseen by Sheila Loewe (the fifth generation in the family business), the foundation and the prize strive to “give artisans a voice,” by providing a global platform to those makers protecting and reviving heritage crafts like ceramics, woodworking, textiles, and glass blowing. The Craft Prize Finalists have been announced, and the winner will be chosen in early April, but just viewing the work from the twenty-six finalists in inspiring!
Loewe certainly has become a mover and shaker in the world of high end craft, by not only utilizing hand-crafted production in their own collections, but encouraging and supporting others to do so as well. And keeping in their innovative yet classic ideology, 2016 marked the opening of Casa Loewe, the newest flagship store in the stylish Salamanca District, Madrid, which serves as a nod to the brands historic past. First stop next time I get to Madrid!