This wonderful scarf, De la Mer au Ciel, was designed by Laurence Bourthoumieux, also known as “Toutsy”, for Hermès’ Spring/Summer 2014 season. The design shows an ocean with fish, plants and other sea inhabitants. An amazing spiral starting in the centre of the scarf has an array of fish metamorphosing into birds and back to fish again. The ocean waves roll and splash against a sky with scudding clouds. There is a lovely patterned border and contrast rolled hem.
The design reminds me somewhat of Escher’s images of tessellations and metamorphoses in his work. I would have liked to put some of these images here, but copyright issues make this impossible. Instead, you may like to look at the following links:
M. C. Escher: Sky and Water I
Image of a woodcut showing both a tessallation and metamorphosis from fish to bird.
M. C. Escher: Swans
Image of a woodcut showing a moebius strip of swans. There are a host of other images on this official site which show my thinking on this.
I fell in love with this scarf as soon as I saw it online and chose what I considered to be a realistic colourway of blues and greens – colourway 08. Back in 2014 I was all about realistic colours, but Hermès has gently converted me over the last few years to more adventurous choices in my newer scarves!
Colourways for the 90cm:
Some of the colourways for the 140cm shawl (I have not been able to find all of them online):
The design story:
‘Fish, like sea-butterflies, metamorphose to greet the sky.’ With these words, Laurence Bourthoumieux describes her teeming, rippling composition of harmonious curves, their meandering forms evoking the ocean depths, and skies full of birds and butterflies. The design is – quite literally – a picture of metamorphosis in action, a vision of a world floating and flying free of gravity itself; a fluid, dreamlike world where shapes, colours and light are transformed from one moment to the next. Centuries ago, the sky was sometimes thought to be composed of the same elements as the sea. And in ancient Greece, fish were among the attributes of Aphrodite, the goddess of love, born – like this silken bestiary – of the ocean spray.
Below are some close-ups of the design details:
This is a real Spring/Summer cheerful scarf and goes beautifully with my cobalt blue cable jumper, white tops and navy cardigans. It ties really well and shows different aspects depending on which way it is folded:
These are some of the clothes in my wardrobe that go well with this scarf. I wish I were slim enough to wear white jeans! Shades of green would look nice with it too, if that is what you have in your closet.
And these bracelets and bangles in my jewellery box look great with it:
There are other blog posts on this wonderful scarf which you may find enlightening:
My Little Scarf Blog: Wearing De la Mer au Ciel
How to wear this scarf in different ways – same colourway as mine!
Olfactoria’s Travels: The Circle of Life – Hermès De La Mer Au Ciel Scarves
This is a lovely blog post exploring different colourways of the scarf.
Vivienne Files: Choosing a Scarf – Hermès in Orange
Janice writes about how to choose clothing to go with several alternative colourways of this scarf.
I hope you have found today’s Scarf of the Moment post interesting. If I find any more images of the shawl colourways, I will add them to this post.