Hermès scarves may have adorned the heads of countless sophisticated celebrities, like Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, Queen Elizabeth II, and Grace Kelly, but the company didn’t get its start as a distinguished fashion house. “Our first customer was a horse,” explained the great-great-grandson of the company’s founder, Xavier Guerrand-Hermès, in a 1980 article for “People” magazine.

Hermès was founded in 1837 as a harness and bridle shop in Paris. It took another hundred years before the company would design a scarf, using the same silk that lined its riding jackets. The first print, called “Jeu des Omnibus et Dames blanches,” debuted in 1937, and was created from a woodblock engraving by Robert Dumas, a member of the extended Hermès family. Named after a popular parlor game, the scarf featured a group of women enjoying the sport at center, encircled by two concentric rings of horse-drawn buses. Over the next few years, Hermès’ silk canvases would feature such romantic imagery as sailing ships, constellations, jungle animals, and, of course, horses.

The 36-inch square silk scarves were soon a mainstay of the luxury goods company, as different artists were commissioned to create their own designs with elaborate detailing and bright color combinations. An individual scarf typically incorporates 20 to 30 different hues, each printed from a unique silkscreen in a process that can take hundreds of hours to complete. More than 2,000 different designs have been produced since 1937, and vintage prints are frequently re-released in new color palettes.

Beginning in 1987, with the “L'Annee du Feu D'Artifice” (or “The Year of Fireworks”), Hermès chose an annual theme for its scarves to dictate the season’s subjects. Regardless of the year, the patterns often feature intricately rendered objects, like a collection of antique canes, elegant riding boots, or a hunter’s weaponry and spoils. Many artists draw inspiration from the contents of the Hermès company museum, whose collection ranges from antique silverware to Middle-Eastern textiles to Victorian toys. Others incorporate flora and fauna, whether creatures of the American Southwest, a flock of flying ducks, or a swirl of French wildflowers.


Best of the Web (“Hall of Fame”)

MyVintageVogue

MyVintageVogue

The history of 20th-century women’s fashion largely played out in the pages of magazines such as “Harper’s Ba… [read review or visit site]

Ventagli.org

Ventagli.org

Anna Checcoli's homage to the beauty and art of hand fans ('ventagli,' in Italian). Use the left-hand nav to browse… [read review or visit site]

Fashion Columbia Study Collection

Fashion Columbia Study Collection

The Fashion Columbia Study Collection (FCSC) is the digital home of the Columbia College Chicago’s fashion archiv… [read review or visit site]

Antiquespectacles.com

Antiquespectacles.com

Dr. David Fleishman's comprehensive spectacles site (over 3500 images), in collaboration with museums around the wo… [read review or visit site]

1960s Fashion and Textiles

1960s Fashion and Textiles

Put on your go-go boots and check out this wavy, groovy tribute to 1960s fashion and textiles, courtesy of the Vict… [read review or visit site]

Vintage Fashion Guild

Vintage Fashion Guild

The VFG is a non-profit international educational organization dedicated to the promotion and preservation of vinta… [read review or visit site]

Fashion-Era

Fashion-Era

Bursting at the seams with content, this site contains hundreds of pages of fashion and costume history, including … [read review or visit site]



Clubs & Associations

Most watched eBay auctions    

Hermes Fleurs D'indiennes 140cm 100% Silk Shawl Scarf Wrap Honore Turquoise EucHermes Scarf 100%silk 35.43” Prieres Aux Vent Light Blue × Cream × Red × GreenHermes Scarf 100%silk 35.43”pink × White × Gold × Blue Qu'import Le FlaconHermes Silk Scarf - Aux Portes Du PalaisHermes Paris Multi Color Blue Purple Brown Bow Design Scarf WrapHermes Scarf 100%silk 35.43” Wedgwood Philippe Ledoux Gold × Black × White × GraHermes Scarf 100%silk 35.43” Grand Manege Origny Cream × Blue × Khaki × GoldHermes Scarf 100%silk 35.43” Grand Apparat Eudel Blue × Gold × Light Blue × GrayScarf Hermes ParisHermes Scarf 100%silk 35.43” Poste Et Cavalerie Pink × Gold × White × Light BlueVintage Hermes Authentic 35" X 34" Silk Scarf Phillpe Ledoux Ivory Gold FranceNew Authentic Hermes Face Au Large Light Peach Silk Shawl Scarf 35" 90 Cm NrHermes Scarf 100%silk 35.43” Les Tambours Joachim Metz Black × Gold × Blue × RedHermes Multi Color Red Ivory Cowboys Horses Print Design Head ScarfHermes Scarf 100%silk 35.43” Des Fleurs Pour Le Dire Yellow × Cream × Gray ×rubyAuth Excellent Hermes Scarf 100% Silk Red Berries White Red With Box 27477Hermes Silk ScarfHermes Paris 35 Inch Square Kilim Silk Scarf Never WornHermes Multicolor Silk Les Sources Dela Vie Sources Of Life Swirl Square ScarfHermes Twilly Scarf Hermes Scarf - 2016 Collection "flamingo Party" 100% Silk Authentic Hermes Twilly Scarf - 100% Siilk - Black Key Pattern - Made In FranceAuth Hermes Scarf 100% Silk Tribord Ship Pattern Red Multi-color Great 35326Vintage Hermes Les Voitures Nouvelles Silk Scarf - Jacques Endel 1970sHermes Scarf Silk/// Hermes Pink Silk Scarf /// La Promenade De Longchamp No Reserve Hermes New Libris Jacquard Weave Cashmere Silk Rose Pink Blend ScarfHermes-paris Tutankhamun Vintage Silk Scarf 35 X 35 Inch SquareAuthentic Hermes Joachim Metz Casino Monte Carlo 100% Silk Scarf Made In FranceHermes Scarf 100%silk 35.43” La Promenade De Longchamps Lime Green × Ivory ×goldRare Hermes Faconnee Grand H Shawl Scarf Wrap Silk Wool Rust 60cm X 200cm Euc Vintage Hermes 1983 Niki Goulandris Flora Graeca Silk Scarf No ReserveAuth Hermes Silk Mousseline 140cm Stole Scarf "early America"Authentic **hermes**rodeo Des Cowgirls Cotton Scarf - Kermit OliverHermes -paris, Beloved India Silk ScarfHermes Light Pink And Gray Keys Silk 90cm Scarf Beautiful ColorAuth Excellent Hermes Scarf 100%silk Cuillers D'afrique Yellow Multi-color 35139Vintage Hermes Mens Silk Ascot Neck Tie ScarfAuthentic Excellent Hermes Scarf 100% Silk Manege Bordeaux Multi-color 35335Authentic Hermes Twilly Scarf White With Reds Orange Flourishes 100% Silk NibAuthentic Excellent Hermes Scarf 100% Silk Sangles Brown Multi-color 35337Auth Excellent Hermes Pleated Scarf 100%silk Gaucho Par Hermes Paris Box 34976 BVintage Hermes Silk Scarf 34 Inches Square Titled Les Muserolles Authentic Hermes Scarf 100% Silk Brides De Gala Pink White Good 35345Auth Hermes 90cm Silk Scarf "de Passage A Tokyo" Mint W/boxAuth Excellent Hermes Pleated Scarf 100% Silk Lvdovicvs Magnvs Gray Box 34978 BHermes-paris Ramses Rybal Vintage Silk Scarf 35 X 35 Inch SquareAuthentic Excellent Hermes Petit Scarf 100% Silk Cannes & Pommeaux Black 32604Vtg 80s Hermes Paris Silk Scarf - Caty Latham Petite Main Black Vivid Colors 35"Auth Excellent Hermes Scarf 100% Silk Bal De Bulles Gray Multi-color Box 27517Hermes Silk Scarf - Les CapucinesVintage Hermes Cashmere/silk Scarf Hermes Silk Scarf - Les Clefs - Pink And Purple 35" SquareVintage Hermes ScarfRare Vintage Hermes Paris Tribord 1968 Julia Abadie Ship Silk Scarf 34 X 33 NrHermes Vintage Selles A Housse Silk ScarfHermes Paris France Black Gold Scarf Chain Rope Horsebit Silk Tie Necktie MensAuth Excellent Hermes Pleated Scarf 100% Silk Persona Bordeaux Box 35332 BAuth Excellent Hermes Petit Scarf 100% Silk Les Cavaliers D'or Yellow 33456Auth Hermes Pleated Scarf 100% Silk Musique Des Spheres Blue Great Box 35333 B