Loewe’s fourth collaboration with the legendary Ibiza boutique Paula’s reaches a turning point as it now offers a full-fledged collection for men and women, complete with ready-to-wear, accessories and a new fragrance.
“Ibiza has always been very dear and very personal to me: It’s my deepest tie with Spain, harking back to childhood and adolescence memories,” shares creative director Jonathan Anderson, who highlights the new collection with the kaleidoscopic nature-inspired motifs created by Paula’s founders, Armin Heinemann and Stuart Rudnick. The prints star mystical mermaids among red corals, while Jikin goldfish frolic among waterlilies.
Through this visual feast, and the off-duty ease of the classic summer staples, Anderson hopes to tap on the breezy spirit of the Balearics. The collaboration also celebrates the time when hedonism of these islands influenced subcultures across the world, as expressed in the “part rave, part cyberdog” segment of the collection that includes reflective silver trousers, spiky tops and day-glo sandals. “I’ve always said that Paula’s Ibiza embodies the spirit of letting go,” Anderson muses.
Alongside an array of playful accessories — think leather mini bags in the shape of octopuses, dolphins and whales — the partnership has debuted a unisex fragrance distinguished by opposing notes of warm ambergris and fresh coconut water. Anderson calls it “escapism, bottled.”
Originally slated for an earlier release, the new range has adopted a personal tone as he takes stock of the global pandemic. Before he introduces the collection in the press release, he added a thoughtful letter. The note reads:
Wherever you are, I hope this missive finds you well.
I know this is not exactly the ideal time to launch products, but this is a project all the craftspeople at Loewe have been lovingly working on for some time, giving life to objects that are exquisitely lively and optimistic — as craft always is.
This is a happy, undeniably escapist collection, conveyed through colourful and energetic images, and I thought it might cheer you up. As a visual feast, probably, or an aide-mémoire of better times to come. I’ll be happy for you to enjoy it, quite simply and very spontaneously.
I hope you and your family are safe.”
Craft is the heart and soul of Loewe. For the bags in this collection, communities of artisans used specialist handcraft techniques and naturally-occurring materials. A specially-designed sickle is used to cut palm fronds that are later sun-dried, before being braided into classic baskets using the Ilata technique, a traditional weaving style that originated on the Balearic islands.
Another example weaves wild reeds on traditional looms, fine cabuya thread derived from the agave cactus plant is spun, dyed in multi-colour sunset hues, and woven into shigra patterns — a unique signature of indigenous communities in Ecuador — to create the squared basket designs.
Anderson hopes the products will uplift spirits in more ways than one — your purchase is a pick-you-up that not only shows support for these artisans, it also helps to ensure a better future for children in socially vulnerable groups affected by the ongoing pandemic. Loewe will be donating €40 (HK$340) to educational projects for every product sold in this collection between May and August 2020, starting with an initial donation of €500,000 (HK$4.2 million).
The Spanish fashion house’s efforts extend to the donation of 100,000 surgical masks to the Spanish Red Cross. At the same time, it is producing non-surgical masks in its Getafe factory to be distributed to volunteer workers, Loewe employees and their families.