Last fall, Italian fashion house
Having started off as an artisanal leather goods brand back in 1966, Bottega Veneta remains best known for its intrecciato technique, which weaves strips of leather together into a textural grid pattern. Where other luxury companies stamp logos on their handbags, Bottega relies on this distinctive braiding method as its
The brand’s new Paris boutique continues in this same vein. For one thing, there’s plenty of leather furniture inside — including custom Mario Bellini-designed armchairs that recreate Bottega’s classic woven pattern using extra-wide strips. Other elements act as a more abstract reference to the brand’s signature pattern: Square glass blocks clustered into five-by-five grids supersize the grid arrangement that you find on Bottega’s Cassette bags.
Because they’re hand-cast by Venetian artisans, these glass screens also double as a reflection of Bottega Veneta’s commitment to Italian craft production. (Similarly, glass door handles are a custom commission from Venetian artist
Apart from giving the project a sci-fi feel, the store’s many translucent screens also help to carry light throughout the wood-heavy rooms. Yet the project’s walnut paneling also demonstrates its own sense of lightness, curling its way into curved hallways and twisting into a sculptural feature staircase. Throughout, rounded wood columns and tables composed of intricate, puzzle-like arrangements of square and rectangular blocks are yet another nod to Bottega’s woven design language.
But it might be the store’s unconventional fixtures that serve as the ultimate showcase of Blazy’s inventive spirit. Curved clothing racks with a slightly industrial quality look almost like dryer vents from far away, but reveal themselves up close to actually be made of more glass. (Others are executed in walnut.) Meanwhile, one of Blazy’s hit accessory designs — Bottega Veneta’s Drop earrings — are adapted into door handles and clothes hooks.
If there’s a lesson to take away from the Paris store’s design, it’s that Bottega Veneta’s time-honoured intrecciato technique is in no danger of going out of style any time soon. Reinterpreted by the right designer, the brand’s signature grid pattern can look not only fresh, but downright futuristic.