Scene setting: The Palais de Chaillot is a venue that Parisian showgoers are most used to. However, on this occasion, French luxury house Hermès placed the entrance to its showspace not on the side of Trocadéro, but down the stairs, where the view of the Tour Eiffel is most majestic. It seemed like a homage to the intrinsic Frenchness of the Maison. In a world full of corporate giants gradually losing their personality, Hermès stands out for its family-owned spirit, and for its utter obsession with artisanship and savoir-faire. But it also stands out for its originality – sometimes even in the endearing kookiness in its event-planning. This time, it was all about checks, which invaded the walls, floors and ceiling of the venue. On loudspeakers, guests could hear the velvety voice of Jarvis Cocker reading a poem. It was specially conceived for the occasion.

Mood board: Checks were not only part of the decoration, they were also the collection’s central theme. Madras motifs were everywhere, both woven into fabric and carefully worked into leather jackets and coats. Creative director Nadège Vanhee-Cybulski’s collection was a remarkable feat of craftsmanship, and featured luxurious if not entirely practical pieces, like skin tight dresses in cream leather with no pockets.

Finishing touches: Fragile-looking blown glass jewellery and dangling earrings, necklaces and bracelets with leather elements added an art-gallery goer vibe to the collection. Leather chokers decorated with studs were also present, adding just the slightest touch of ultra chic kink to the collection. We wouldn't mind seeing more of that in the next show.

RELATED TOPICS: HERMÈS