Designer Christophe Lemaire is leaving Hermès to focus on his own label, which means that his spring 2015 collection for the house was his last. (It also happened to be the final show of Paris Fashion Week.) Sand covered the runway, but there was no hokey safari theme here. Instead, Lemaire focussed on silhouette, draping suede dresses and wool blouses in the most elegant, nonchalant ways. A suede robe coat made an impression, as did a navy leather collared shirt. A neutral palette gave way to a few looks made out of Hermès scarf fabric, a nice homage to his former employers. Lemaire, both with Hermès and his own collection, is one of a consortium of designers truly capturing how we want to dress now: luxe utilitarianism, with few flourishes. Really, who doesn’t want a navy leather anorak in their closet?
What a shame, some might say, given that his wares seem to embody the quiet elegance Hermès puts forward. But unlike some departures, there was little sadness today. After all, we’re not losing Lemaire. He’s simply moving on. And so has Hermès. Next season, new womenswear designer Nadège Vanhee-Cybulski will begin again. And we’ll be watching.