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Armin Heinemann came to Ibiza in 1972, and opened Paula’s soon afterwards. Having trained as an architect, and endured a messy divorce in Germany, this new destination was a real escape – and he quickly realised it was for others too. This was a time when bohemian mirth had Europe besotted, and the boutique quickly became a cult destination for jet-setters around the world, in a similar vein to what Diane von Furstenberg was encapsulating with her slinky wrap dresses in New York, or Thea Porter and her louche store in London. It was a time before creative spaces that encompassed art and fashion were hardened under the banner of ‘the concept store’; Heinemann invited a certain type of imaginative spirit (the likes of Freddie Mercury, Valentino and Donna Summer were all regulars) that helped to shape the image of Ibiza for some decades to come.
Indeed Jonathan Anderson first got to know Paula’s Ibiza as a child, where trips to the island immersed him in the spirit of the store. In this exclusive Spring / Summer 2017 collaboration, Heinemann has provided LOEWE with original prints from the boutique’s archives, as well as garment designs adapted from Paula’s best-selling pieces. The marriage of this historic boutique and luxury Spanish brand feels like a perfect fit, and the collection of one-of-a-kind tops, skirts and dresses, all made from high-grade crêpe and printed with a splendid array of nature, does not disappoint.
‘The aesthetic of our prints came directly from how I was living, without a telephone and no computer,” Heinemann comments in the lookbook. “I lived from what I grew myself behind the house. It was a simple, primitive life. And it fed my creativity because it provided me with a strong contact with nature. That is my departing point. Not just the designs came from this relationship with nature, the whole business did. If there was any talent involved it had to do with transforming that direct experience of nature into culture, capturing the surprise and joy of nature and turning it into something material, tactile, man-made.’
With Loewe, collaborations often go beyond the clothes and this capsule range is no exception. First, Anderson has enlisted photographer Jamie Hawkesworth to shoot the lookbook for the collection. The relationship between the photographer and designer is long-standing, with Hawkesworth photographing Chloë Sevigny for J.W.Anderson last year. His rich, buttery aesthetic easily captures the spirit and energy of the collection.
Perhaps more unexpected is LOEWE’s collaboration with matchesfashion.com, which will see the collection launched with a digital trunk show – a 360 degree shopping concept where Matches customers will be invited to immerse themselves in the design. The initiative ensures that wherever audiences are in the world they can access the reimagined spirit of Paula’s Ibiza, and just in time for the summer.
The LOEWE capsule collection will be available on matchesfashion.com from April 28.