At Hermès’s new installation, "Self Service," the retailer shows that porcelain dinnerware still has a place at the table.
Photo: Tiffany Sage, BFA.com

New Hermès Installation Celebrates Casual Entertaining

With a cantina-inspired exhibit, the brand wants to carve out a space for fine china in casual entertaining

As entertaining becomes less formal—and more unexpected—in the modern era, luxury brands like Hermès are re-examining the way they create housewares collections.

“A Walk in the Garden,” a collaboration between Benoît-Pierre Emery, creative director of Objets et La Table for Hermès, and illustrator Nigel Peake, is an exciting departure from the brand’s traditional look. It celebrates a more youthful and art-forward approach to tableware, one that is both bold and beautiful.

Hermès’s “A Walk In the Garden” collection sits a top a cafeteria tray. Photo: Tiffany Sage, BFA.com

Peake, known for his vibrant use of color and whimsical illustrations, has worked with Hermès since 2009, designing everything from scarves and handbags. Because of this, Emery saw Peake as an ideal partner to create the latest iteration of what Hermès is calling “art for the table.”

Recommended: See James de Givenchy’s Incredible Collection of Rare Gemstones

To show just how casual the new line can be, Hermès created “Self-Service,” a pop-up installation that mimics a high-end cantina. Cafeteria-style trays are set with pieces from the brand’s tableware collection. The hope is that the installation will show the brand’s tabletop line in a new context, one that might appear to younger buyers who seem less and less inclined to purchase formal dinnerware.

Tray racks are filled with trays adorned with Hermès porcelain tableware. Photo: Tiffany Sage, BFA.com

The bright and playful new collection is available now.

“Self Service” is on view at the Hermès store at  691 Madison Avenue in New York City through the end of the week. It will then travel to the brand’s Dubai store as part of Dubai Design Week, November 12–17.

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