Louis Vuitton celebrates its ateliers and artisans in chic new tome

Louis Vuitton Manufactures, published by Assouline, explores the French maison’s craftsmanship through specially commissioned photography

Left, artistry in Ducey and right, in Asnières.
(Image credit: Olivier Pilcher)

Louis Vuitton puts the focus on its artisans in Assouline’s new book, Louis Vuitton Manufactures. Author, historian and journalist Nicholas Foulkes takes a deep dive into the craftsmanship traditions of the maison, with an exploration of its creations, including trunks, bags, fragrances, watches, shoes, high jewellery and ready-to-wear. The skills intertwined with the design codes of the brand are celebrated in specially commissioned photography that puts the artisans at the heart of the process.

Black and white picture of Louis Vuitton founders, image from Louis Vuitton Manufactures book

Louis, Georges and Gaston Louis Vuitton at the Atelier d'Asnières, north-west of Paris

(Image credit: Olivier Pilcher)

Photography celebrates both the history and contemporary creation methods of the brand, from capturing Louis, Georges and Gaston-Louis Vuitton outside the Atelier d’Asnières to exploring the vast Ranch Rochambeau in Texas. Other images explore artistry, taking a closer look at intricate design methodologies, including the precise stitching on sneakers and refining the cut of the ubiquitous LV monogrammed leather.

Louis Vuitton puts an emphasis on local savoir-faire, drawing on the expertise of global craftspeople in a rethink of the traditional centralised workshop. Ateliers are based around the world – throughout France, in Geneva, Fiesso d’Artico in Italy, and Texas. Workshops are thoughtfully situated: in Ducey in Normandy, the picturesque island of Mont-Saint-Michel can be admired from the window; in Beaulieu-sur-Layon, a light-filled location translates into a low environmental impact.

Inside the page of Louis Vuitton Manufactures

Big Texas office

Ranch Rochambeau Texas atelier

(Image credit: Olivier Pilcher)

The book is an elegant tribute to a house that has stayed faithful to the original design language defined in 1854, with a focus on enduring style and lasting quality. Founder Louis Vuitton brought an art to the mundanity of travel through luggage and accessories that were both practical and chic. In new collections, designers across a range of disciplines, including architecture and art, have reinterpreted this functionality in designs that put artistry at their core. It is an aesthetic succinctly summarised by Louis Vuitton chairman and CEO Michael Burke: ‘Fundamentally, it’s not about luggage, it’s about innovation.’


(Image credit: Olivier Pilcher)

Man making jewellery

(Image credit: Olivier Pilcher)

Multi coloured Louis Vuitton bag

(Image credit: Olivier Pilcher)


Louis Vuitton Manufactures is published by Assouline

Hannah Silver is the Art, Culture, Watches & Jewellery Editor of Wallpaper*. Since joining in 2019, she has overseen offbeat design trends and in-depth profiles, and written extensively across the worlds of culture and luxury. She enjoys meeting artists and designers, viewing exhibitions and conducting interviews on her frequent travels. 

With contributions from