Off-White™ Limited Edition Rug

As part of Milan Design Week, Off-White™ is releasing a limited-edition rug, which also takes center stage at the brand’s Via Verri flagship with an immersive floor-to-ceiling installation and a takeover of its windows.

Spanning 170×240 centimeters, the rug is available in only 40 pieces and is coming with a numbered label.  The design is marked by a floral pattern in a deep blue shade and bold lettering in popping yellow reading «Don’t walk here.» Crafted in Germany with a double-layer felt lining, the rug is to retail at €1,250 euros exclusively at Off-White™ Milano Verri store, beginning April 15, 2024. The brand will also host live DJ sets in-store on April 17 and 18, extending opening hours to 9pm in honor of the occasion.

LoL, Sandra

Photos: PR © Off-White™
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Design Ancora: Gucci Presents 5 Design Icons

DESIGN ANCORA GUCCI PRESENTS FIVE DESIGN ICONS AT ITS FLAGSHIP STORE ON VIA MONTE NAPOLEONE

From an idea of Creative Director Sabato De Sarno, GUCCI Design Ancora is a special project co-curated by Michela Pelizzari. From April 15 th 2024, five icons of Italian design, reedited and customized, are showcased in an immersive exhibition conceived by Spanish architect Guillermo Santomà at Gucci’s flagship store in via Monte Napoleone, 7.

 

From April 21st 2024, a special edition of the objects will be available online on gucci.com.


Storet by Nanda Vigo for Acerbis (1994, reedition 2020)


Clessidra rug, Portaluppi Pattern Project by Nicolò Castellini Baldissera (great grandson of Piero Portaluppi) from an iconic design of Piero Portaluppi, edited by cc-tapis (2024)


Parola by Gae Aulenti and Piero Castiglioni for FontanaArte (1980)


Le Mura by Mario Bellini for Tacchini (1972, reedition 2022)


Opachi by Tobia Scarpa for Venini (1960, reedition 2021)

«Through Design Ancora, Gucci doesn’t simply celebrate old icons, it creates new ones,» explains Michela Pelizzari, founder of Milan based creative agency P:S, which co-curated the project, «The aura emanating from the brand spotlights five pieces by Italian masters that are perfect from a design standpoint but less known to the general public

The chosen objects represent the golden age of Italian design, while also reminding us of the important relationship between designers and brands, craftsmanship and industrial production. All objects are re-edited in Rosso Ancora, the red hue chosen by De Sarno to mark the beginning of Gucci’s new creative chapter.

Gucci Design Ancora comes to life at the Gucci flagship store in Via Monte Napoleone, 7.
In every room, the curved walls in green a color chosen by Sabato De Sarno contribute to blurring boundaries and creating a metaphysical space in which each object appears on its own, displayed as an idea rather than as a mere product.

«If we had put the objects all together, we would have created a living room. Instead, we decided to remove the boundaries given by how we use these objects and create a sort of limbo,» explains Guillermo Santomà, who is known for a multidisciplinary approach merging design, architecture, sculpture and scenography, «Floating objects don’t have meaning or a function. They are just shape, materiality, color.»

The same visual approach is applied to the windows on Via Monte Napoleone, 7. In one of them, a pair of Gucci Cub3d a limited edition sneaker created combining 3D printed elements and the House’s own Demetra material float in the middle of the air and rotate on their own in a magnetic installation. In another one, a 3D printer is displayed as a unique object customized by Santomà himself.

Definitely worth seeing when you are in Milan!

LoL, Sandra

Photos: © Gucci
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Diptyque Meets Café Verlet

This is a collaboration made in heaven for me. Scents and coffee … two of my most favorite things. Diptyque, in collaboration with the famous Café Verlet in Paris, has unveiled its newest collection, «The Art of Gourmandise / Les Délicieuses», merging the essence of Parisian café culture with the brand’s renowned olfactory craftsmanship.

This collection unveils four elegantly crafted limited edition scented classic candles illustrated by artist Clym Evernden expressing the flavours of a typical French cafe:

Café (Coffee) – embodying the richness of freshly brewed coffee
Chantilly (Whipped Cream) – light and sweet with a dash of vanilla
Biscuit (Cookie) – a spicy, patchouli-infused aroma
Fruits Confits (Candied Fruits) – a tangy plum scent.

The fragrances evoke the rich ambiance of a Parisian café, each a nod to the history of Café Verlet, established in 1880 and acclaimed for its finely tuned flavors.

Complementing the candles are the Coffee Bean Lid and Parisian Café Tray.

Available from the beginning of April 2024, these olfactory delights can be found online, in Diptyque boutiques and at selected retailers, inviting all to indulge in the world of Parisian gourmandise and to enjoy the playful illustrations of a whimsical Paris at your home.

LoL, Sandra

Photos: © Diptyque and Café Verlet
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A Literary Treasure

4th of April marks the start of the 64th annual ABAA New York International Antiquarian Book Fair, and one stand will definitely attract the crowds, as rare books dealer Lux Mentis has a very special treasure on display.

A signed first-edition copy of Truman Capote’s Breakfast at Tiffany’s has been rebound in goatskin to feature one thousand white diamonds – totaling nearly 30 carats – and one showstopping two-carat emerald-cut sapphire in the shade of the iconic Tiffany blue. The book will eventually be valued at $1.5 million; a magnificent piece showcasing spectacular craftsmanship created to mark the centenary of the writer’s birth, a literary treasure.

Award-winning master bookbinder Kate Holland worked with a team of British craftspeople on the project, that was masterminded by Paul Suntup of US bookbinders Dragon Rebound, which specializes in rebinding first editions and rare books.

The book sits on a custom plinth by glass artist Jade Pinnell, inside a birdcage by Dominic Parish, referencing the birdcage in the story, which symbolizes the reluctance to be confined or restricted of the lead character Holly Golightly — famously played in Blake Edwards’ 1961 Breakfast at Tiffany’s film by Audrey Hepburn. The whole, including a portfolio of images by photographer David Attie, are housed in a custom trunk also by Parish, a British cabinetmaker and craftsman who has produced work for royal families and private collections. The trunk references Golightly’s peripatetic lifestyle.

LoL, Sandra

Photos: Courtesy of DRAGON REBOUND and Courtesy of David Attie Estate
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KILIAN PARIS – Sunkissed Goddess

«It’s the scent of summer, the scent of happiness.» – Kilian Hennessy

Are you in the mood for summer? Then I recommend smelling the newest scent by KILIAN Paris, so- called Sunkissed Goddess. Being a reinterpretation of Monoi Oil, the traditional Polynesian elixir with a luxurious halo of warm sunlight and fresh narcotic florals, it heightens the multi-sensorial memories of your beach holidays. Think of tanning oil and the heat of the sun …it is an invitation to experience the sensations of summer all year round.

Olfative Family: The Narcotics
Top Notes: Ylang-Ylang Essence, Tiare Flower
Heart Notes: Coconut, Vanilla
Base Notes: Guaiac Wood, Cistus Labdanum

Available for CHF 260.00 in limited edition. I am obsessed! It is literally summer in scent, oil on body, sun kissing skin.

LoL, Sandra

Photos: © Kilian Paris
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Gucci Nail Sticker Set

In December 2021, Billie Eilish announced an eco-friendly limited-edition vinyl version of «Happier Than Ever» made from recycled vinyl scraps. The collector’s item was available only at a number of Gucci stores around the world and included Gucci-branded nail stickers designed by the brand’s creative director at that time, Alessandro Michele. Needless to say it sold out in seconds and the market got flushed with fake stickers available on Amazon, Etsy and others.

However, the best is yet to come. The nail stickers set – created to celebrate House emblems through the GG monogram and lettering in multiple shades and styles – is available now for only CHF 20 without the vinyl. This is a true collector’s item for all beauty lovers. Comprised of 176 stickers, the set includes four designs that allow for endless creative combinations, infusing each look with brand recognition.

How to use: After allowing a base coat of your chosen nail color to dry fully, place the nail-art sticker of choice on the middle of each fingernail. Press it for a few seconds with a finger, and then release.

TO SHOP THE NAIL STICKER SET, CLICK HERE PLEASE.

LoL, Sandra

Photos: © Gucci
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Louis Vuitton Brings Plique-à-jour Enamel Back

At the crossroads of artistic crafts and high watchmaking, Louis Vuitton is bringing plique-à-jour enamel into the 21st century. The Voyager watch’s dial turns into a modern stained-glass window, revealing the perfection of a flying tourbillon movement developed at La Fabrique du Temps Louis Vuitton and bearing the prestigious Poinçon de Genève seal. A journey into the blue.

Mastering and reviving traditional expertise could well be Louis Vuitton’s byword. The Maison has placed craftsmanship at the core of its cardinal virtues since its earliest days. By choosing plique-à-jour enamela French word first recorded in 14th-century annals – Louis Vuitton intends to restore the prestige of this rare, complex technique, still used by exceedingly few artisans in Europe. Though this enamelling process is lengthy and very painstaking, the transparency, lustre, and colourful nuances it provides are second to none. Many months of research were needed to obtain this blue gradient. To achieve this, the Maison worked with several master enamellers within its atelier at La Fabrique des Arts. The dial of the Voyager Flying Tourbillon «Poinçon de Genève» Plique-à-jour was crafted entirely within La Fabrique du Temps Louis Vuitton workshop.

A technical and artistic feat
The highly precise plique-à-jour technique, pioneered by Byzantine artisans in the 4th and 5th centuries CE, consists of depositing enamel into cells without the support of any backing. Louis Vuitton chose the ancient, Western «percé» – and most challenging – technique from among the different types of existing plique-à-jour methods. To breathe life into this miniature stained-glass artwork, the enameller applied colour to each section using a paintbrush, in keeping with the most traditional technique: capillary action fill. Given that the material is not deposited directly onto the dial’s back, but rather into open cells, the enameller’s movements must be quick and light to ensure that the enamel spreads evenly and without air pockets.

The result on such a surface is a real technical feat, providing the Voyager watch with unprecedented clarity and light. The visually striking white gold dial, featuring repeated interlocking Vs for Vuitton, showcases a vivid, luminous, and modern reinterpretation of plique-à-jour enamel. This effect is only heightened by the timepiece’s exquisite colourway and the dimensions of the enamelled surfaces – as demonstrated by the central dial at 12 o’clock, whose sumptuous gradient of three shades of blue varies in saturation and opalescence between ultramarine, azure and blue grey.

Beyond the difficulties in obtaining plique-à-jour enamel on a larger surface, the hand pipe’s placement speaks to Louis Vuitton’s technical mastery. To ensure a perfect set of hands, the pipe must be precisely centred and adjusted by hand down to the millimetre. The component seems to float serenely in the centre of this blue dial, permanently affixed thanks to a meticulous application of enamel. This achievement is further proof of our in-house enamellers’ ingenuity and experience. In total, five to six layers of translucent enamel – and the same number of kiln firings – are needed to obtain this impressive level of transparency, with around 100 hours of work going into every dial.

This mesmerising work of art is allowed to shine in the Voyager’s avant-garde case, defined by a circle within a square, whose architecture provides the watch with even more radiance. By letting light pass through the dial, this type of enamel sets the stage for a chiaroscuro effect, casting infinite nuances onto the watch mechanism. This virtuoso design is paired with a unique skeleton movement: the Poinçon de Genève hand-wound LV104 calibre, which is hand-finished down to the smallest cog. By bringing together the exceptional know-how of plique-à-jour enamel and the mastery of a flying tourbillon movement, La Fabrique du Temps Louis Vuitton perfectly captures the essence of high watchmaking.

A top-flight mechanism
Developed and designed exclusively within La Fabrique du Temps Louis Vuitton, this flying tourbillon is the hallmark of the brand’s virtuosity in the field of contemporary high watchmaking. Louis Vuitton chose to feature an ethereal and innovative version of the most iconic watchmaking complication. Over 120 hours of work went into assembling all 168 parts of this calibre, which boasts an 80-hour power reserve. The carriage of the iconic governor has been shaped into a capital V, which spins on itself in a minute. The V’s dynamic, coupled with the movement’s vertical positioning and the dial’s plique-à-jour motifs, bestows a truly unique personality to this tourbillon.

What is even more remarkable is that the Voyager Flying Tourbillon «Poinçon de Genève» Plique-à-jour bears the illustrious Poinçon de Genève seal. Established in 1886, The Geneva Seal attests to the utmost level of manufacturing and finishing of all the components that go into making a watch. Appearing at 9 o’clock, the seal shines clearly from beneath the enamelled dial. Through the union of skilled artistry taken to its pinnacle, an exceptional mechanical calibre and a Poinçon de Genève seal, the Voyager Flying Tourbillon «Poinçon de Genève» Plique-à-jour is a true watchmaking masterpiece, infused with the visionary spirit that has fuelled Louis Vuitton since its founding in 1854.

LoL, Sandra

Photos: © Louis Vuitton Still life visuals: Ulysse Frechelin Savoir-faire visuals: Studio Fédéral (photographer Régis Golay) and Piotr Stoklosa
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Hermès Arceau Mon Premier Galop Watch

Designed by Henri d’Origny in 1978, the timeless Arceau watch revels in playing the transformation game. Epitomising Hermès style, its round case with stirrup-shaped lugs welcomes several highly creative and demanding artistic crafts. Enhanced with leather marquetry, silk threads and miniature painting, the Arceau Mon Premier Galop watch thus unites a diverse range of skills. Its singular aesthetic reveals a joyful interpretation of the Mon Premier Galop shawl by artist Tong Ren.

Fascinated by traditional basketry work, the Chinese-born designer combines simple lines, colour blocks and refined decorative-trimming motifs. His drawing depicts a horse moving across the sand, accompanied by a fluttering butterfly and lit up by a mischievous sun playing with the clouds. Its faltering gait imbued with a sense of fragility and daring evokes the moment of grace of those first steps of horseback.

This magical moment comes to life on the dial of the Arceau Mon Premier Galop watch with its 30-piece jigsaw-like nature uniting several skills deeply cherished by Hermès. The sky and the radiant sun are crafted in enamel, a meticulous technique that involves applying a multitude of enamel layers with a brush and drying them in a kiln to guarantee unique colours and contrasts.

Standing out against this radiant blue background, the horse composed of silk threads along with fine tesserae in various shades of leather that are first trimmed to just 0.5 mm thick. Individually assembled on the dial, the leather and silk threads form a delicate, colourful decor enlivened by a tiny hand-painted gold mobile applique.

Issued in a 24-piece limited edition, the Arceau Mon Premier Galop watch in white gold set with 82 diamonds beats to the rhythm of the Manufacture Hermès H1912 movement. The sapphire case-back reveals the finishes and the «sprinkling of Hs» motif adorning the bridges and oscillating weight. Adding a final touch, a Zephyr blue Swift calfskin strap accentuates the play on light and textures adorning the watch face.

I am loving it!

LoL, Sandra

Photos: © Hermès
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Audemars Piguet x Tamara Ralph

Congrats to my friend Tamara Ralph on her collaboration with Audemars Piguet. Both unveiled a new Royal Oak Concept Flying Tourbillon. Inspired by the Haute Couture designer’s aesthetic merging bold femininity, boundless creativity and timeless elegance, this limited edition in 18-carat pink gold shimmers with Frosted Gold and takes on a unique palette of graded hues ranging from brown and bronze to golden tones. This collaboration, which will be revealed on 22 January 2024 during Tamara Ralph’s runway show in Paris for the S/S 2024 Haute Couture Fashion Week, celebrates the natural synergies between Haute Horlogerie and Haute Couture, while furthering the strong ties that Audemars Piguet has woven with creative worlds over the years.

Tamara and I at lunch at Gigi Ramatuelle in the summer

INSPIRING SYNERGIES
Believing in the power of creativity to feed culture, connect people and broaden horizons, the Swiss Haute Horlogerie manufacturer has always looked to the larger world for inspiration. Over the years, the Manufacture has fostered enriching dialogues amongst fields of creative practice, including Haute Couture, with which it shares a strong commitment to uncompromising craftsmanship, precision and excellence. In 2020, Audemars Piguet began its partnership with designer Tamara Ralph, pairing several of its watches with her S/S 2021 Prêt-à-Porter collection. Pursuing their enduring relationship, Audemars Piguet and Tamara Ralph have collaborated this year on the design of a Royal Oak Concept Flying Tourbillon inspired by Ralph’s Couture universe.

«My intention for the design of this piece is for it to capture the spirit and craftsmanship ofboth my brand as well as Audemars Piguet. The complications of watchmaking orchestrate a foundation which can be played with in terms oftextures, colours and designs, allowing for the savoirfaire of couture to shine through. Rich materials, unique colour palettes and ultimate precision are combined, creating an exquisite limited edition of the Royal Oak Concept Flying Tourbillon, inspired by Haute Couture
Tamara Ralph – Creative Director and Founder of Tamara Ralph

A REFINED PLAY OF TEXTURES AND LIGHT
The Royal Oak Concept Flying Tourbillon «Tamara Ralph» Limited Edition showcases an 18-carat pink gold case adorned with Frosted Gold. This ancient Florentine jewellery technique was revisited by jewellery designer Carolina Bucci and adapted by Audemars Piguet artisans in 2016 to decorate the Manufacture’s timepieces. Tiny indentations are created on the gold surface with a diamond-tipped tool, giving a sparkle effect similar to that of precious stones. lts visual power is accentuated by the polished bevel outlining the octagonal bezel, while the case’s satin-brushed flanks provide added contrast. The juxtaposition of finishing techniques-a meticulous operation which required perfect alignment between the hammered, brushed and polished surfaces-gives sumptuous texture to the case, while bestowing it with endless plays of light. For its part, the caseback’s glareproofed sapphire crystal is held in place by an 18-carat pink gold octagonal frame, finished with satin brushing and polished chamfers and engraved with «Royal Oak Concept Limited Edition.» Lastly, the hexagonal crown, whose shape recalls the stainless steel screws punctuating the bezel, also plays with light thanks to its satin-brushed and polished finishing. lts translucent cabochon-cut sapphire adds yet another touch of feminine elegance to the case design.

A HARMONY OF COLOURS AND LAYERS
The multi-layered dial takes inspiration from the bold femininity and textured detailing of Tamara Ralph’s Couture creations. lt is composed of four overlapping circular pink gold plates, creating a ripple effect as they emanate from the flying tourbillon cage at 6 o’clock. Each layer presents a different colour, evolving from brown in the centre to bronze in the middle, to reach golden tones towards the dial’s extremity. While the brown and golden colours have been achieved through galvanic treatment, the bronze layer is covered with bronze lacquer. The dial is finished with a continuous sunburst satin-finishing radiating from the hands outwards, in seamless alignment from one plate to the other. Pushing details to the limit, each plate is adorned with a thin diamondpolished gold thread that adds depth to the dial. Matching with the circular, multi-layered architecture of the dial, the flying tourbillon at 6 o’clock merges technical mastery with sophisticated aesthetic.

The cage’s upper frame incorporates three rings radiating from a decentred disc paved with 19 brilliant-cut diamonds (~ 0.04 carats). lts pink-gold-toned hue echoes the 18- carat pink gold hour and minute hands, both filled with luminescent coating for optimum legibility in the dark. At 12 o’clock, the applied pink gold AP monogram adds the final touch. Hour-markers have been left out to accentuate the purity and harmony of the dial design. The timepiece comes with a bronze-toned hand-stitched «large square scale» alligator strap. lt is also supplied with an additional brown alligator strap recalling the centre of the dial for a refined look. The two straps are decorated with a pearly finishing adding subtle elegance and glamour. The timepiece’s glittering hues and intricate details will catch the eye from up close and afar, just like a Couture piece would.

I am absolutely in love with this timepiece!

LoL, Sandra

Photos: Courtesy of Audemars Piguet and © Sandra Bauknecht
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M·A·C Lovestruck Luck

Lost in the enchanting hues of M·A·C Lovestruck Luck Collection, here are the new products from the collection that is celebrating Lunar New Year and Valentine’s Day at once. Try your luck at love! Aim straight for the heart of whomever you love with the help of the best-selling face, eye and lip products in brand-new and tried-and-true shades featured in M·A·C Lovestruck Luck.

Taking inspiration from the Chinese New Year dragon, each product is outfitted in limited-edition packaging that morphs a dragon scale pattern into a mesh of tiny interlocking heart shapes that’s as chic as it is covetable.

Lustreglass Lipstick / Lovestruck Luck
Luck Has It – Dirty peach-beige
Powerfully Potent – Deep red
Sweeter Cinnamon – Warm brick

CHF 32.00

Molten Metal Highlighter
Many Moons Aglow – Universal champagne

CHF 45.00

Powder Blush / Lovestruck Luck
Power To You! – Warm burgundy
Full Of Wonder – Warm champagne-peach

CHF 41.00

Studio Fix Pro Set + Blur Weightless Loose Powder / Lovestruck Luck
Translucent

CHF 45.00

Eye Shadow x 6: Lovestruck Luck
Just A Dream – Warm champagne satin with copper (Pearl)
Untamed Flame – Warm garnet lustre (Lustre)
Legend Has It – Gold-peach with green pearlescent particles (Satin)
She’s Got Flare – Peachy pink duo chrome (Duochrome)
Waiting In The Wings – Warm terracotta-brown (Matte)
Sparkle Starter – Metallic khaki with gold pearlescent particles (Pearl)

CHF 60.00

Macstack Mascara / Lovestruck Love
Black Stack

CHF 42.00

When the day or date is over, melt their heart as effortlessly as their makeup with the science-backed lightweight Hyper Real™ Fresh Canvas Cleansing Oil for a powerful yet gentle cleanse to give the gift of great skin.

Hyper Real™ Fresh Canvas Cleansing Oil / Lovestruck Luck

CHF 52.00

The collection is available exclusively at Globus and maccosmetis.ch from January 2024.

LoL, Sandra

Photos: © MAC Cosmetics
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