With more than 125 years of experience producing leather goods for the British elite, the designers behind Smythson have done it all—or so we thought. On day three of London Fashion Week, Smythson’s Spring/Summer 2014 collection was put on display in the brand’s New Bond Street store for the viewing purpose of the world’s most prominent buyers, fashion editors and influencers, alike. Along with a complete collection of leather goods in vibrant blues, pinks and reds, Smythson revealed a collaboration with British Artist, Quentin Jones, whose pieces flanked the walls of the flagship store. Even more impressive than the newly configured handbag designs was the brand’s homage to the original proponents of the Panama diary, which provided inspiration for not only the artwork, but the new collection (hence the name, ‘Panama’) in its entirety. In his ten piece series, Jones exposed the relationship between the Panama diary and its notable advocates, such as Katharine Hepburn and Dita Von Teese, effectively creating a gallery of both art and leather goods—at least until the exhibition’s end on September 21st.
While the newly designed totes, card cases, agendas and wallets maintain their ostensibly British feel, their availability in bold, resort-esque colors and metallic’s demonstrates a slight shift towards the new generation consumers.