“If you are a fan of Tomas Maier, the Bottega Veneta brand, fine leather, fashion heritage, Italian craftsmanship, exquisite product photography, or the many other topics so skillfully explored in this superb book, make sure you own it.”
Where to start? For once this reviewer is flummoxed by this ultimately quintessential and exquisite love letter to the brand that is Bottega Veneta. What strikes one immediately upon completion of its reading is that this elegant and tastefully rendered homage is all about the brand and not the designer, which immediately elevates its worth and value as a book concerning style, fashion, and craftsmanship—not just a single diva designer.
Craftsmanship and heritage are leading players in the story of this legendary and fabled 50-year-old brand. That is due, in no small way, to the author, Tomas Maier, Bottega Veneta’s creative director, who approaches all the sections and chapters of this volume with an eye to detail such that a sense of intimacy is created.
Bottega Veneta has an unbelievable amount of visual appeal and perceived value due to the sleeves, volume, and quality of the photography and the paper. These are all qualities that are rarely married within a book concerning a brand and its history. So many of these beautiful coffee table editions turn out to be nothing more than glossy advertisements, endorsements, or attempted validations for certain brands and their current designers. Bottega Veneta delves deep into the story of how it all began.
“When your own initials are enough . . .”
The above is the catch phrase launched so many years ago soon after the birth of the brand and is still adhered to after more than 50 years. This is not to say that all of the company’s history reflects the ordered elements of a fairy tale—but ultimately the fairy tale ending does apply, for the brand and image have been restored to a glorious luster among today’s luxury products.
In a time when initials such as G or F were more prevalent than LV or C or H, Bottega Veneta came closest to representing itself with a mere signature or logo when it produced printed butterfly patterned suede, which became a silent signal of taste and status among the cognoscenti.
There is only a small flaw in the book: There exists no reference to the simplicity and implicit status introduced with Bottega Veneta’s “intrecciato” technique of weaving leather—featured on the cover!—and the role its creative director of that era played in the development of the brand prior to Mr. Maier’s tenure. The point here is that the aesthetic that Mr. Maier continues today was set in place decades ago during the growth years of Bottega Veneta.
If you are a fan of Tomas Maier, the Bottega Veneta brand, fine leather, fashion heritage, craftsmanship, photography, Italy, or the many other topics so skillfully explored in this superb book, make sure you own it.