There was once a time when the earth was worshipped, when nature was hailed as the cure. Harking back to this near-mythical past, House of Hackney’s AW19 collection draws upon the spiritual elements of the natural world.
A melting pot of bohemia, the new season marries medieval folklore with our fascination with the English countryside; translating ancient stories and traditional skilled techniques, passed down through generations, into pieces that are both eclectic and esoteric.
The untamed beauty of nature – always our protagonist – is reflected in the utopian print names. AVALON, christened after the paradise island of Arthurian legend, is a psychedelic botanical design populated with hand-drawn sunflowers, poppies and lilies. In a nod to the Arts and Crafts movement, GAIA depicts large-scale blooms, birds and berries amidst scrolls of swirling vines. ROSETTA is rich with textural detail, weaving flowers in a pattern reminiscent of an 18th century embroidered silk article we discovered. The intricate Persian pattern of CASPAR is based on a hand-made Tabriz carpet, while CAMELOT’s harlequin diamonds take inspiration from historical circus motifs.
The gothic undertones that often permeate our collections come to the fore in the new BLACKTHORN. Rejuvenating a beloved motif from our collaboration with the William Morris Gallery, the skull hidden deep within its floral pattern has been accented to symbolise mortality and eternity. And naturally, our envisioned utopia has a dark side. Evocative of the Garden of Eden, our House signature of intertwining snakes wrap around the SERPENTIS mirror, brass lampstand and ceramic vase, while simultaneously writhing their way into ANACONDA, a tactile print on burnout velvet – an evolved treatment for House of Hackney. We have even given Snakes and Ladders, that beloved pastime of a bygone era, our own unique spin – reimagining it as a tasselled velvet cushion, complete with a bag of semi-precious runes and a cover that can double up as a board.
Echoing the Jacobean mood are furniture pieces that play with proportions; from a glass-topped ottoman cloaked in velvet CASPAR to a love seat decked out in a rug motif with ANACONDA across the arms and back. Celebrating the occult as well as the mysticism of the zodiac, our four TRIPLICITY cushions reinterpret antique astrologers’ maps as triptychs of star signs divided by element: fire, water, earth and air. Each one an enchanting take on the energy forces our ancestors thought integral to the universe.
In contrast to the verdant tones of last season, AW19 is high on colour. The rich palette runs the gamut from blush to burgundy, moss-green to vermillion, petrol to Prussian blue. A true tonic for the grey days of winter, our alchemical blend of folk symbolism and the symmetry of nature will imbue any room with magic.