RAMESH NAIR is a name you might not know, but if Bernard Arnault has anything to do with it, you soon will. Arnault has chosen the former Hermès, Lacroix and Yamamoto designer to create a line of bags for 19th-century trunk maker Moynat Malletier - in much the same way that he placed Marc Jacobs at the helm of forgotten trunk-maker Louis Vuitton almost 15 years ago.
Arnault, whose Groupe Arnault company purchased the rights to the French label last year, will open the company's new a 2,150-square-foot Parisian boutique tomorrow. Made-to-order trunks, Nair's bag collection - which ranges in price from under £1,000 to more than £10,000 - small leather goods, and silk scarves, will all be available at the Rue Saint-Honoré store, as the brand once again dips its toe in retail waters.
Following Louis Vuitton's reinvention in the Nineties, another luxury trunk maker, Goyard, has enjoyed a renaissance - albeit a more low-key one, sticking to the small leather goods, bags and trunks of its heyday rather than following Vuitton in to high-end ready-to-wear. The ambitiousness of Moynat's proposed relaunch remains to be seen, although the brand's ceo asserted: "The first goal is not sales. The first goal is to tell the story."