In the beginning it was brown. Yes, Emile-Maurice Hermès chose this shade for his label’s visual vocabulary, notably by using it for the color of the boxes that would enclose newly acquired pieces. But then World War II saw the Nazis occupying Paris. Like many sectors, fashion was slowed to a halt, and even occasionally censored. Certain goods became difficult to procure. The shortage was such that the manufacturer found itself unable to order the color brown; no dye was available, except orange.
With brown fallen to the wayside, Hermès confirmed its new brand image even after the restrictive period by using distinctive signs for the first time: orange boxes, a ribbon, and Le Duc Attelé. These were the circumstances that made Hermès’ image evolve. An integral part of the brand’s identity, the color orange is today Orange Hermès. A symbol of serenity, wisdom, and joie de vivre, the color can also be found on the label’s iconic pieces today – the Kelly Orange from 1935 set a world record with the price it went for at auction.
The orange boxes themselves are also the stuff dreams are made of. Orange Hermès is a warm, dynamic, and joyful color – a symbol of luxury and good taste. While orange became a bit démodé in the 90s, Hermès decided to anchor itself in timelessness and didn’t break with tradition, preserving the use of the color for their label. The idea of heritage and values is indeed very near and dear to the brand’s heart. While staying loyal to their fundamentals, by accepting the outcome of destiny, the manufacturer has incontestably established this shade as the symbol of ultimate refinement. Hermès is one of the few brands that’s able to ceaselessly adapt and create – this way of being is immortalized in a shade of orange that belongs to Hermès and Hermès alone.