Because, life is craft, science and emotion.
Institute: Can you tell us the inspiration behind your latest collection?
We were taken with the idea of opposites, of making room for fertile contradiction. That reason can coexist with vivid, impractical improvisation, that a shoe can at once be anachronistic and elegant, a watch can look simple and hide complexity – these contradictions lend an object interest. A shirt is essentially an item of clothing – the cut of the sleeves, the way the yoke sits on the shoulder – all these are practical constraints – working within these constraints and creating something remarkable and considered, and memorable – that was our goal.
Institute: What is Bolvaint’s creative process?
Quite unstructured at the beginning and more disciplined as we go along. The Creative Team puts together a mood board – this could be anything – abstract photography, a piece of music or art, an unusual material or texture. We’re allowed to go off on tangents – all doors are open and there is no judgement at this stage. Eventually, a coherent idea emerges from the chaos – sometimes two or three. We work with these, mold these until it’s obvious we have one direction, one concept, we’re all equally enthusiastic about.
Institute: Do you have an ideal client in mind when designing?
We design for ourselves. And what we’re inspired by. There’s definitely an element of travel – of the feelings associated with setting foot in a new city for the first time. We’re always looking for the little details that take us by surprise. Take, Ceti, our sunglasses collection. The indentations and filed away rims – all planed and polished by hand – it’s very wearable, and yet at the same time almost sculptural.
Institute: How big a part does Paris play on the brand?
It’s part of our identity, and not really something we can shake off even if we wanted to. It simply exists, and ties into our cultural and artistic references, everything we unconsciously imbibe. One of our co-founders is French and we have more than a few French people on our team. The decisions we make are shaped by our influences; sometimes we’re drawn to the familiar – a reinterpretation of classic French or Parisian motif – with a touch of something decidedly contemporary.
Institute: What advice do you have for up and coming designers?
To follow their instincts and be prepared to work hard. Finding a great mentor is important when you set out. Ultimately though, it’s about seeking inspiration and building a work ethic — the two go together. There are days when you just arrive at the studio and sit down to work, and maybe something good will come out of it. We must be patient, and believe that the ideas will come to those who can master their inclinations.
“Creating something remarkable, considered, and memorable – that was our goal.”
Institute: Is there anyone you would like to collaborate with?
We’re drawn to artists and industries outside our discipline – architects, sailors, musicians – especially when it comes to the materials we use and the forms we’re inspired by. Lots of little projects in the works, but we’re not giving away anything yet! Follow us on Instagram and hopefully you won’t be disappointed.
Institute: Your women’s fragrance Lyreae is truly divine, what was the inspiration behind it?
The idea was to bottle the smell of a garden after the rain. The perfume is heady, almost otherworldly – citrus, mandarin and pear, heart notes of jasmine and orange blossom, base notes patchouli and vanilla. It’s a complex scent, and yet youthful. Something that transcends time and age.
“The perfume is heady, almost otherworldly”
Institute: If someone is new to your brand what piece would you recommend?
An item from the travel collection. The Ivens Travel Bag in Leather. The Ivens is substantial, discreet and serves a purpose – it reconciles beauty and practicality. Something we’re always looking to achieve.
Institute: What is the secret to being stylish?
Being comfortable in one’s skin. Unlearning – mustering the courage to dismantle the accepted way we do things.
Institute: What can we expect to see from you in 2017?
We’re launching new leather and apparel collections. A lambskin motoring jacket with exceptional detailing –- and a moto jacket for women, among other things. It’s a busy year.