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A God for the Four-Legged

Those little pets walking by your side deserve luxury for all the loyalty and protection they give you! What better way to tribute them than gifting a splendid home which spoils them to their heart’s core? Meet La Favorite – a Parisian design house, creating art especially for cats and dogs…

The new mantra, from Bollywood to socialites, is to have a four-legged friend for which nothing will be ever enough…

In only a couple of years, the scenario for dogs and cats in big metros of India has moved to a king style life and it’s just the beginning of this revolution. This is a great time for those who are innovative enough to match the desires of owners to pamper their favourite companion.

From creative event management companies specialized in arranging dog parties, to pet-friendly resorts, to rainwear collection for your pet during monsoon… choices are increasing. Reason why, in this June issue, we decided to go a step beyond, and add something more exclusive to your collection, which combines style, decoration, and contemporary design, thus, embellishing your interior and delighting your pooches

La Favorite is a styling brand for pets based in Paris. Brigit Mettra, the innovative Founder and Executive Director of the brand, designs a unique universe for your best friends, going from bespoke designs to limited creations, inspired by elegance and ‘Parisian chic’

Who will still say “It’s a dog life”? Enjoy discovering it…

Veronique Poles: Can you please tell us a little about yourself, your background, and your passion for pets.
Brigit Mettra: I grew up with pets and have been surrounded by them since my childhood. They have always been members of the family. For a very long time I wanted to create my own company, but before taking that step, I first researched on which were the most successful career sectors in the coming 10 years (you can’t escape this thinking after 20 years in finance!). Among these sectors, it was a great surprise that the pet market was one of them. Thus, ‘La Favorite’ was born.

VP: How did you come to this original concept of opening a styling office for ‘distinguished’ dogs and cats?
BM: Art, design, decoration, colours and elements of a stylish lifestyle have always been part of my life. This is the main reason why I decided to launch and create a luxury brand that would show that this segment could also have an element of style. I was sure I could express my creativity and design flair with a French touch in this area. There are very few brands which only create products dedicated to pets.

VP: Why did you target the segment of luxury for pets? Is there is a new trend with owners and their companions. If so, how could you describe it across the world (for example, in US, Japan, etc)
BM: The mentality of having a pet as a companion has always existed from as far back as the Renaissance period when pets were made part of the royal courts. The interest in luxury pet accessories has existed since this period, but grown particularly in the last four years in our century. There is also a visible change of attitude in people. Luxury clients are making money at a younger age and they (especially women) consider their pets as their spouse or a child they don’t have yet. They wish to provide their pets with the same products that represent the elegance and quality they have in their lives. They spoil their pets in most cases.

In Europe, Japan and US, this is a societal behavior, while in emerging countries it is more a code of social recognition.

Luxury homes kennels for dogsVP: Diane, your muse, comes from a long lineage of pedigreed dogs of the Royal Courts, and her name itself is ‘royal’. How does she inspire you?
BM: Her name was chosen in reference of Diane de Poitiers, the preferred courtesan ‘La Favorite’ of both French kings François I and Henri II and also in reference of the mythology of goddess Diane. She is the embodiment of the Moon. She sparkles at night like the stars. We call her ‘the Radiant’, the one who illuminates our path in the maze of life. She reigns over nature and the wilderness. Such a name with different universes and references could only inspire my creations with varied designs, colours and materials.

VP: What was the spark of inspiration when designing Sofa O, a luxury sofa for pets, which comes in a limited edition of 100 pieces, each stamped and numbered? 
BM: A universal form as an egg, which can be recognized in any continent and culture, it’s a strong symbol. The birth of the world from an egg is an idea common to the Celts, Greeks, Egyptians, Phoenician, Tibetans, Hindus, Vietnamese, Chinese, Japanese, Siberian and Indonesian populations, and to many others as well. Another inspiration, is the Fabergé’s very famous eggs – the story of a fabulous present. The colours, black and white, were inspired by those of Diane de Poitiers.

VP: Can share with us who ordered the first Sofa O, or from which country did you get your first order?
BM: My first sale to the luxury hotel Le Meurice in Paris was a high point in the firm’s development and they choose the number one in the white edition.

VP: Why the name ‘Sofa O’ and why is this sofa so exclusive and exceptional? 
BM: Sofa is an old, oriental word constituting a seat of honour and ‘O’ is in reference to its form. It is exceptional and exclusive made with a royal material, the porcelain, and it is a handmade product where the hand of the man intervenes in each of the eight stages of its manufacturing.

VP: Before designing and styling for cats and dogs, did you have to study their psychology and comfort needs?
BM: Yes, it’s very important for me that the product is in perfect adequacy with the needs and behaviour of dogs or cats. I don’t have only one client but two, the owner and his little companion.

VP: Can you share with us some unique projects you were contacted for?
BM: I have been commissioned for various unique projects, like an entire room dedicated to the pet cat. We also made two portraits of pet dogs in the XVIIIth century style to join the portraits of ancestors of a noble family. In India, recently, a Maharaja ordered a special little palace in wood for his cat!

VP: La Favorite products are designed by you in France and sent all over the world. Where do your products get the best response?
BM: In Russia, Florida, Italy and hope soon in India.

VP: Your creations are exclusive, but you always pay attention to select, rare and wonderful locations in Paris to display them to the audience. Can you speak about some of them and some of you recent collaborations?
BM: My showroom is in the heart of Saint-Germain des Prés, in Paris 14, rue Visconti and you can visit only by appointment. It’s in an old private mansion from the XVIIth century. It’s a magic place. I have another location in Paris – Marina Life. It is a beautiful shop where the owners can select exclusive objects and products for their pets’ home. I expect to get a new location in Cannes as well. My last collaboration was in St Petersburg, Russia.

VP: India has a burgeoning pet market. Everybody wants to make their pet feel special (and improve their social status in the process). Any plans to enter India?
BM: I would like to be present in certain boutiques in luxury hotels to become more known.

VP: Do you ever plan to increase your offerings to other pet species – like parrots or other birds?
BM: Not parrots, but later I will love to create for the falconry and horses of polo.

VP: What is luxury for you?
BM: Luxury is a personal affair which joins everyone!

Veronique PolesVéronique Polès is a freelance fashion and luxury consultant based in Mumbai, with more than 15 years of extensive experience with luxury brands like Louis Vuitton, Hermès, Givenchy and Waterman/Gillette Pen Company just to mention a few. Bespoke creations, however, are her first love. For LuxuryFacts, she unveils some of the best-kept secrets in the sphere of ‘word of mouth landmarks’ for connoisseurs of products with substance. They are greatest creations, made by artisans of excellence and guardians of tradition, who work with passion for details and quality to make your dreams come true.