For Spring/Summer 2024 Men’s, Véronique Nichanian infuses the house’s equestrian heritage with nautical overtones

In the heat of a Parisian afternoon—windows latticing the sunlight, papers fanning the air, foreheads glistening with sweat and sunscreen—Hermès offered a needful dose of cool. A parade of models walked through the Palais d’Iéna in high-collared shirts of cotton poplin, double-breasted jackets in transparent ‘tracing paper’ fabric, and shorts in crepe and leather whose high hemlines more than earned their moniker. Breezy, sensual, and on the heels of the solstice, the show was a skin-first introduction to the season.

While Hermès is near-synonymous with equestrian heritage, the Spring/Summer 2024 men’s collection had a decidedly nautical sensibility: reversible bucket hats in Toilovent, calfskin fisherman sandals with notched soles, raincoats in chromatic compact cotton serge that shimmered in the light like radiant fish skins. Marrying the boyish idyll of summers at the beach and refined technical details, the storied French house continues to find new references without sacrificing the heirloom-quality it built its reputation upon.

Where other designers opt for theatrical interventions into men’s silhouettes, Véronique Nichanian—now in her 35th year as artistic director of the men’s universe at Hermès—chooses durability over novelty. Her latest collection’s triumphant sensuality and effortless elegance are proof that her impressive tenure is no accident. Call it quiet luxury, if you wish, but Nichanian’s Hermès doesn’t whisper—it sings as sirens do.