Housed in a former art gallery, the bright minimalist bones showcase the duo’s colorful maximalist style, which has been featured on “And Just Like That” and “Emily in Paris” in recent weeks.
“It’s the first time we can really show our Rianna and Nina world, because what we were missing so far — of course we love to work with Bergdorf’s, A’maree’s and all our retailers — but it’s always just one rack,” Nina Kuhn told WWD.
The former fashion executive is one half of the dynamic duo that created the line eight years ago in Berlin, along with costume designer and vintage collector Rianna Kounou.
The brand has previously hosted its Paris Fashion Week showroom on the square. “Here we can do whatever we want. We don’t have to wait for buyers, we can just do it and present it. The space gives us more flexibility to try new things,” Kuhn added. “The client cannot just explore our fashion, but it was really important to also show a variety of products and to have this cabinet de curiosités so they can always find something new, little bracelets, scarves, belts.”
A wall of windows grants expansive views on the Palais Royal — the boutique has the biggest retail space on the square — let in lots of light, while the eclectic mix of objects adds a shock of energy that catches the eye of passersby.
The Rianna + Nina ethos is upcycling vintage finds, but luxe-cycling might be a better term for their one-of-a-kind wares, which include a jacket crafted from a vintage rug from Uzbekistan, a Japanese kimono and Chanel bouclé brought together on 120-year-old machines. The eclectic mix makes for an electrifying piece.
The cuff bracelets made with vintage brooches and limited-edition bags featured on the “Sex and the City” revival are on display, alongside odd objects picked up on their travels — old sewing bobbins in every color of the rainbow, for example.
Amongst the other goodies: Handwoven throw blankets from Greece, chunky vintage jewelry form Dior, Lacroix and Yves Saint Laurent, Greek wedding pins, vintage silk scarves, an ancient table runner transformed into an embroidered evening wrap.
The brand’s bestselling BonBon bags — updated with woven handles — are on display, and they created a tote exclusively for the store featuring handmade Uzbek tapestry lined in their unique prints. Both the recent collection and their Archive collection, which features mix-and-match fabrics from past seasons and reproductions of some of their most popular prints, is on offer.
Kounou and Kuhn envision adding pieces to a collection of ever-changing artworks. For the launch, Portuguese artist Bela Silva created sculptures and planters for the shop, and Kounou’s own hand-painted lamps are also on display.
As for making their new home in the City of Light instead of their home base of Berlin? “Berlin is not as international as the brand is. We love Paris, we come here often, we have our showroom here for fashion week,” said Kuhn. “When we talked about having a store, we always said, ‘It has to be Paris.’”