Hermes once again demonstrates that it has the quirkiest sense of humour among luxe fashion houses. Over the weekend in Hong Kong, hundreds of guests gathered for its big menswear bash, called Men Upside Down, at the 23,000-sqft Kai Tak Ferry Terminal, located on the grounds of a former airport. A Fall/Winter 2017/18 runway presentation (featuring interesting guest models such as veteran actor Michael Wong and Cantopop lyricist Wyman Wong) was part of the proceedings, but this was just part of an extravaganza that was no ordinary fashion show — as anyone who has visited the brand’s other madcap, over-the-top events would know. Here are our top three reasons why Men Upside Down was a fashion event like no other.
01: We played a video game that is a scarf print.
Air hockey, arcade basketball, ping pong and a floor-to-ceiling video game featuring the robotic spiders and equestrian motifs from a new Hermes scarf print: Men Upside Down was dedicated to the Hermes men’s universe, and the games room was a raucous heap of old-school fun. The motif was also used across the rest of the room, covering items such as a ping pong table. The ultimate (fashionable) man’s den.
02: It took us into sub-zero temperatures in 30-degree weather.
Hong Kong recently came out of a record-breakingly warm summer, but the temps outside were still high enough to get many of the attendees breaking a sweat under their linen suits. Which could explain why there were long queues outside the ice room, with people waiting to submit themselves to the sub-zero interior for a full three minutes. Spirits and cocktails were also served within, for those who could not take the cold — or perhaps, boring old sobriety.
03: It was like the most unboring museum ever.
Like all good museum-goers, we usually keep a good distance from the works we are admiring. But Men Upside Down was an invitation to touch and otherwise be part of the quirky exhibits. Our favourite was the gallery of fabrics, with different-sized frames holding some incredible Hermes fabrics, such as a pliable technical rubberised lambskin and calfskin with a micro-perforated pattern. And this, in a nutshell, summarises Hermes for us: It’s all about innovative and exquisitely made products that are worthy of display, but are meant to be used as part of lives well lived.