The Chelsea Flagship Store
Wandering into Duke of York Square in Chelsea, I was instantly captivated by the Monica Vinader flagship store. Set in a large glass outer wall building, it sits in the middle of the square. The store excites your senses from the moment you walk through the door, with the scent of candles that have been burning earlier flowing throughout and takes you to a world of calm.
The design of the interior is brilliant. Polished concretes floors and internal walls contrast well with the brass and wood details. You can see craftsmanship, along with different quality materials are a big focus. Highly influenced by Italian architect Carlo Scarpa, the brass elements and shapes in the store are quite fascinating. Handmade bespoke chandeliers and windows displays that are made from brushed steel add to the appeal and combined with the rich colours such as in the seating, it is simply wonderful.
To date, Monica Vinader has been a hugely popular brand amongst women, including the likes of Emma Watson, Olivia Palermo and the Duchess of Cambridge. While MV has mostly been about women, with some unisex pieces, the brand has now introduced men’s product to the mix. With a full collection for men’s due out later in the year, this is a wonderful introduction to the quality and design aesthetics of the Monica Vinader man. They were awarded Brand of the Year at the UK Jewellery Awards at their debut in 2008 and have continued to impress. Stocked in their own stores across London (Chelsea, Mayfair and Canary Wharf), you will also find them in Selfridges, Harrods and Liberty, as well as online.
The first piece, coinciding with the lead up to Father’s Day here in England, is the Havana friendship bracelet. Designed by Monica Vinader and the design team at their Norfolk design studio, what is instantly noticeable is the quality. The band is sturdy and strong, yet quite refined. A Sterling silver rectangle bar, which is lightly hammered to give a wavy, reflective finish, is a great size (45mm x 7.5mm). I find men’s bracelets often have the tendency to be quite chunky and heavy with bars such as this, so it is lovely to see one that is perfectly balanced with the plaited cord band. The cord itself is easily adjustable with a Sterling Silver toggle that makes for easy alteration, and features a beautiful, finely engraved MV logo, and the cord is finished off with small Sterling silver ends. The cord, which comes in three colours (black, denim blue and forest green) isn’t too long, so you can adjust for a snug fit and a look that is without fuss. The option to personalise your bracelet to make it individual is with engraved monograms, initials (quite popular with men), names and even messages.
Aside from the design, I was impressed with their commitment to ethical sourcing across their entire supply chain. Human and labour rights, environmental impact and mining practices are looked at carefully and monitored through their certified membership with the Responsible Jewellery Council. They were also awarded the Butterfly Mark by Positive Luxury for their commitment to sustainability which further demonstrates their commitment.
I’m really excited Monica Vinader has introduced men’s and is expanding on this. If you are in London, I do recommend to take the time to look at the Havana bracelet. You can also look online by clicking on any of the product images below that will show you each piece in more detail, and to the Monica Vinader website. I’m looking forward to seeing them styled up in menswear editorial. Be sure to tag #themanhasstyle on social media if you are doing this, I want to see!
Words by Sarah Crawford, Editor, The Man Has Style
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