When serendipity hands you a gift on a silver platter, you accept it with gratitude and if you're smart, the foresight to look beyond the immediate treasure. What the 'H' am I talking about? Well, I'll tell you. Tucked into one of NYC's tree-lined, townhouse laden blocks on the Upper East Side lies a freshly polished (but not too) gem of a shop-cum-lifestyle destination called Hayward House. The brainchild of Marin Hopper, yes that Hopper (she's the daughter of Hollywood legend Dennis Hopper and Brooke Hayward), and husband John Goldstone who recently made the decision to call New York City home and set up a permanent flagship for Hopper's exquisite collection of chic, classic handbags and accessories brand Hayward.
With a family history that's as fascinating as it is daunting, Hopper's visceral desire to create and tell her own story comes full circle with luxury accessories that are just the beginning of a true American heritage brand. Watch this space folks. While searching for a home base in the city, Hopper and hubby discovered the Grosvenor Atterbury Mansion which they very carefully and lovingly restored to its former Arts & Crafts glory with amazing attention and respect to detail. During the lengthy renovations from what was last a tacky 70's-inspired hair salon, they uncovered the real hidden treasures of what lay waiting beneath a thick layer of plasticized, laminated glitter and gunk. Exquisite wood moldings, hand-painted ceilings, Tiffany glass, gilt fireplaces and paneled walls with sections papered in original Fortuny wallpapers. Hence, the serendipitous moment.
Like any good esthete worth his or her fill in the blank, Hopper and company laid claim to the idea of making Fortuny not only part of Hayward House's history, but it's future as well. Hopper designed a unique, limited-edition series of handbags cut and hand-crafted from exclusive archival Fortuny velvet brocades in delicious florals set in rich tones of champagne, coppers, lavenders and moss. The soft shopper is my personal favorite, I love how luxurious the fabric feels in this unstructured style. I can just feel it's soft, velvety shape dangling from my arm lending a bit of old world charm spiked with a fresh, new narrative perfect for right here and now.
Hayward Fortuny Series Collection, limited edition, available only at Hayward House, 212.585.1712.