Parisian Chic x Innovative Design: Hervé Van der Straeten
Hervé Van der Straeten captures the imagination with both eye-catching jewelry and innovative furniture design...
Visiting the gallery of Parisian furniture designer Hervé Van der Straeten was as fun as it was inspiring. I first became familiar with Van der Straeten as a jewelry designer which, as it turns out, is how he started his career in the mid-80s. His first collection, made of black rubber elements and brass wire, brought him immediate notoriety and was picked up by Thierry Mugler for one of his fashion shows. Having this catapult him into the fashion world, Van der Straeten then went on to create bespoke pieces for a Givenchy haute couture show during the reign of Alexander McQueen, as well as create jewelry for Christian Lacroix, just to name a few of his early accolades.
Despite this success, however, jewelry was not his only passion. Van der Straeten's love for bold, sculptural lines became his trademark and he used this aesthetic as his foray into home decor in 1992, designing his first collection of home accessories including candlesticks, sconces and tableware. Since then, his world has evolved, although naturally, also quite dramatically. In 1999, Van der Straeten opened his first showroom / gallery in the Marais district of Paris and, a few years later, established his atelier in a former factory in the suburbs of Paris. This gave him the ability to hire a bigger team, as well as closely oversee the manufacturing of each item bearing his name.
Today, not only does Van der Straeten employ almost 30 artisans, but his pieces are bought and collected all over the world, including by the Musée des Arts Décoratifs and the Mobilier National, the official supplier of furniture and decorative objects to the French state since the time of Louis XIV. His business has been named a "Living Heritage Business" by the French Ministry of Culture and Van der Straeten himself was personally named "Chevalier de l'order des Arts et des Lettres". What does all this mean you wonder? It means, if you able to, buy a piece of work by Van der Straeten NOW because his creations are being scooped up quickly and will only increase in value as time goes on!
On a personal note, I've had the extreme pleasure of getting to know Hervé recently through mutual friends in Paris and, besides being warm and gracious, he is one of the most humble people I have ever met. I appreciate this as one never knows what to expect when meeting someone with his amount of industry fame. Perhaps I am jaded or perhaps my experience has given me such examples. Either way, if I had to describe Hervé in one word, both personally and professionally, that word would be CHIC. And this rare trait is one to admire.
Hervé Van der Straeten jewelry can be found exclusively on his website. His furniture is also sold though high-end galleries Ralph Pucci and Maison Gerard. Even if you're not shopping, seeing his work in any capacity is a true pleasure and something I highly recommend!
Hervé Van der Straeten Gallery
11, rue Ferdinand Duval
Photography by Alina Kolot