It won’t come as news that we’re fans of the open kitchen. Aside from the drama, the flames, the energy and the (hopefully) tasty bites that such a set-up generates, we also like that a transparent system demands tidy working practices, polite conduct and for people to be on top of their game. We feel the same about most businesses, save for banks that like to make a lot of huff about transparency in their architecture but fail to do the same in their daily operations.
Yesterday evening, Chanel gave colleagues, collaborators and media a sneak peek of 19M: a 25,500 sq m facility at the edge of Paris that will soon be home to 600 artisans renowned for pleating, embroidery, millinery and more. Chanel's president of fashion, Bruno Pavlovsky, told us that 19M “is unique in the world as it brings together so many craftspeople under one roof”.
Designed by architect Rudy Ricciotti, the building will be unveiled in a little over a year and marks a further step in the revitalisation of the 19th arrondissement. Other luxury-goods companies and cities should take note. Not everyone wants to write code, work in service, draw up contracts or even be a journalist. Imagine. There’s money and satisfaction that comes with skilled craftsmanship. Chanel just might be sparking a mini-manufacturing renaissance in this corner of Paris.