As the shirtmaker, who has worked for the French fashion house for over two decades, walked me through the process of cutting and embroidering each button-hole perfectly, the translator explained "It takes seven to eight hours per shirt."
This process may be lengthy, but it is nothing compared to what goes into creating one of the brand's signature Kelly bags or silk scarves. Holding up a small, quarter-sized ball of silk, a translator at the booth explained that this was the raw material for a scarf, five of which are used to create one printed shirt. Nearby, a printmaker made the plates that would be used to eventually create the elaborate patterned scarves. "It takes a year to create the 36 plates needed for one scarf," an Hermès employee explained.
Check out our photos below to see the artisans at Hermès' Festival des Métiers creating their goods. When you see how much work goes into each piece, the outstanding price tag makes a little more sense.
Hermès Presents Festival des Métiers is in New York City, NY (at 583 Park Avenue) from September 5th through September 9th, in San Francisco, CA (at Union Square Park) from September 20th to September 24 and in Houston, TX (1800 Post Oak Boulevard) from October 10th through October 14. Take a peek at the photos below for a preview of the exhibit. All photos by Raydene Salinas.