Loewe in Manila and the Art of the Leather Bag
What one of the few leaders in leather craftsmanship has to teach us about certain fashion investments
As this Madrid-based luxury house heads to the Philippines (and, by the same token, sets up its first stand-alone store here), we revisit the many things worth reveling in, poring over and talking about when it comes to a label as iconic as Loewe.
Ahead, a quick history lesson on one of the first fashion houses in the world and an imperative review of those fashion ABC’s. “L” is for Loewe:
Jonathan Anderson: the promising young designer at the helm of a 173-year-old fashion powerhouse.
Following Hermès as one of the longest established fashion houses still operating today (Thierry Hermès in 1837 is to Enrique Loewe Roessberg in 1846), Loewe began among Spanish leather craftsmen and to this day upholds the tradition and reputation.
In 2013, the LVMH-acquired label opened its doors––and arms––to then 29-year-old Irish-born designer and London Fashion Week favorite Jonathan Anderson, who assumed the role of creative director. He has been with the brand since.
More than a leather goods brand, Loewe holds a storied history with and is distinguished by the Spanish royal family.
It was in 1905 when the Spanish royal family granted Loewe one special honor that further elevated the brand. King Alfonso XIII and Queen Victoria Eugenia bestowed upon the Spanish heritage brand the official title of “Supplier to the Royal Court,” allowing Loewe to become a piece of iconography: a gift befitting somebody’s coming-of-age or a token to signify his or her coming into prominence or power.
Loewe is where the past and the present join forces and charge straight into the future together.
The brand’s DNA speaks to the culmination of this idea: a product that’s understated when need be and always inherently sophisticated.
Jonathan Anderson’s respect for traditions upheld by such a historic fashion house along with his forward-thinking sensibility enable him to propel Loewe into the modern world: ready-to-wear for both men and women that relays ease and excitement. Something that effortlessly translates across the brand’s accessory, handbag and now, even the brand’s eyewear line.
The Hammock, the Puzzle and the Gate: “it” bags that supersede trends.
Slung around the arms of stars like Beyoncé, Sienna Miller, Kate Bosworth and Rihanna through Anderson’s early years at Loewe (and now the likes of Wonder’s January cover babe Gabbi Garcia, fashion photographer BJ Pascual and actress-entrepreneur Heart Evangelista), these three fêted pieces make the vast lineup of iconic handbags responsible for solidifying Loewe’s place in the contemporary luxury space.
Art Alexandra Lara