OUT OF AFRICA: What do you get when you pair Rimowa with John Nollet? A pop-up hair salon at the luxury luggage-makers Paris flagship, replete with midcentury, safari-camp decor chosen by the celebrity hairstylist, and a capsule collection of his bespoke case.
“John Nollet’s Travel n’ Style Salon” will be open to the public between Sept. 24 and Sept. 26 and Sept. 28 to Oct. 5 by appointments made online at email@example.com.
The cases Rimowa had custom-made for Nollet to ply his trade — such as one created to hold his tools and another to contain a mirror — are showcased in the entryway of the second-floor space. He’d been using Rimowa luggage for more than 15 years before requesting some bespoke versions be made.
Those blend right in with the veld backdrop, wicker and canvas furniture, woven throw rugs and draped linen fabrics at the salon.
Travel always makes Nollet dream, not least safaris and the hues that infuse them. “Beige, khaki, brown, it’s all these colors that you can find in nature,” he told WWD.
Peppering the salon are three areas where people can have their hair done, choosing from a menu that includes the Lady Stanhope, a shampoo, massage, treatment, haircut and hairstyle package for 200 euros; the Olaplex treatment for 150 euros; a cut by Nollet for 700 euros, plus treatments created for the pop-up. Dior will operate the nail station.
Exclusively downstairs, in the Rimowa boutique situated at 73 Rue du Faubourg Saint-Honoré, a limited number of cases fashioned after one of Nollet’s bespoke models, called the Rimowa x John Nollet Classic Cabin S, will be on offer for 2,100 euros. It is Rimowa’s first titanium-colored Classic model with brown leather accents.
That’s the case Nollet carries on planes. “It has all my precious stuff that I need,” he said of the model chockablock with little bags, such as a vanity Nollet uses to hold pins for evening updos. The limited-edition Rimowa capsule has, as well, leather luggage tags.
For Rimowa, working on the project with Nollet came about organically.
“I have known John for many years, and he is by far the most talented hair designer there is,” Alexandre Arnault, Rimowa’s chief executive officer, told WWD. “When he came up with the idea for us to build a custom case for him, we were all excited at Rimowa. It is the best way for us to show our craftsmanship and also our heritage; we come from the trunk industry, back in 1898. We are able to manufacture custom-made trunks for the most exuberant demands. Here it is hair accessories, but we have done golf clubs, wine, skis and keyboards before.”
Last fall, Rimowa had its first beauty-related tie-in, with Australian brand Aesop on a small travel kit, inspired by the Rimowa Travel Humidor. “We sold out of all kits in a couple of days, and so did Aesop,” said Arnault.
Rimowa’s joint projects — which also have involved artists — will most likely continue. “These tie-ins bring us the opportunity to reach a different customer base, who might not know about our products,” explained the executive. “Indeed, partnering with such brands and artists allow us to express our potential differently.”