LVMH has announced it will open a dedicated space for craftsmanship in Paris. The 21,500-square-foot house will be a craftsmanship training location and also a physical landing for the Institut des Métiers d’Excellence program, a vocational training program “founded in 2014. This program has trained over 2,700 people across seven countries and has already taken in 700 apprentices. The location on Rue Bayard will be open to the public so that visitors can interact with the 280 different trades that LVMH represents across its 75 brands including Tiffany & Co, Sephora, and Louis Vuitton.
Chantal Gaemperle, group executive vice president of human resources and synergies at LVMH tells WWD that having direct contact with makers and apprentices is inspiring. Gaemperle also mentioned that the pandemic “fueled” the need for people to get back to making and touching things, and ignited a desire for others to create a “concrete” impact.
LVMH’s head of development for the Institut des Métiers d’Excellence program, Alexandre Boquel, says the company plans to hire 22,000 “specialized craftspeople” from gem sculpting to eyewear manufacturing, lesser-known design fields. “It will be open to all and the promise is that the moment you walk in here, you will learn a physical gesture, whether you’re a novice, a member of the public, or a researcher in craftsmanship,” Boquel notes.
The purpose of a physical space to hold the training program is to spark interest in more traditional professions that have been passed down from one generation to the next like shoemaking. Boquel also mentions that young people are the target audience as many don’t know about these professions or don’t think they are accessible to succeed in and will reassure those who want to pursue those lesser-known career paths.
The training program will offer reservable hands-on workshops for internal and external “craftspeople,” the space will begin construction later this year and has a tentative grand opening at the end of 2025.