However, while designer brands become the status symbols of the fashion elite; there is one such brand that prefers their presence a little more reserved. That brand is the ever elusive Goyard. It takes close inspection before the brand name is revealed.
I’m pleased to tell you, that if you are already familiar with the brand, congratulations. You have been welcomed into an exclusive club.
With no e-commerce site and only a few locations in the U.S, this exclusive brand has bestowed Chicago with its presence. The quaint boutique sits inside Neiman Marcus on Michigan Avenue. Upon entering the space, one is drawn to a wide array of some of the brand’s most classic pieces. True to the aesthetic of the brand, the space features inspirations of art deco. Guests can expect to see the signature “Y” logo among the store’s columns.
As we go back to 1853, we are first introduced to the Goyards; a family of loggers who created some of the finest trunks in all of Paris. Having been established just one year before another notable name, Maison Goyard goods were highly sought after by the likes of the Duke of Windsor and Coco Chanel. It was the finest quality of materials, impeccable craftsmanship, and the classic design that had many seeking out the brand.
As a way to continue honouring the past, Maison Goyard continues to use the same methods from the 1800’s when creating the products. All materials originate from France, with not even the jewellery (closures) being found from anywhere outside of France. The signature smooth Goyardine coated canvas features a slick feel meant to repel the elements. This is an ode to the splashing of the river that sprinkled the loggers as they gathered their logs. If one takes a closer look at the intricate design, one notices that the “Y” emblazoned throughout the piece features the tiniest dashes. As dashes scatter throughout the piece, they symbolise what started it all; the logs.
However, what truly separates Goyard from the rest is the art of Marquage (hand painting). As a way to personalize luggage and make pieces easily identifiable when traveling, Goyard would paint the initials or add a work of art to the piece. Till this day, the brand remains one of the few houses to still continue the art of Marquage. Even the specialized paint is only found in the south of France. Going beyond initials, the artist shared that the strangest thing she’s had to paint on a bag was a child’s painting of a dragon. Goyard goes above and beyond, to make sure that their products were personalized to the individual needs.
So what’s next for Goyard? Don’t hold your breath for massive world domination as that has never been the goal of the exclusive brand. Those who want Goyard, have to actively seek it as you won’t see them plastered on billboards, clogging your Instagram feeds, or always featured in magazines. Once you find the bag, you are welcome to the club of Goyard.
The highly exclusive nature of the brand is exactly why it’s a big deal for Maison Goyard to take shop in Chicago. Judging by the turnout for the grand opening, I’m pretty sure they aren’t going anywhere anytime soon.