The house of Martin
Goyard did not start out as Goyard, Way back in 1792, Pierre-Francois Martin founded the 'House of Martin'. A company that was specialized in trunk- and box making. At that time there was little demand for trunks and boxes. That’s why the house of Martin started to focus more on packing services for all kind of objects, from furniture to hats. French aristocracy quickly became aware of the company and its popularity rose. In 1834, the House of Martin moved its store from 4, rue Neuve des Capucines to 347, rue Saint-Honoré, its location has remained the same ever since. On the outside of the building you can see the the very first signs, which refer to the packing service.
Passed on to Goyard
Martin gifted his company to one of his employees: Louis-Henri Morel. In 1845 Morel hired a 17-year-old boy called Francois Goyard. When Morel died unexpectedly in 1852, Goyard took over the company. He led the company for 32 years, whereafter he handed over his position to his son Edmond Goyard. Edmond was the one who made the brand into a big succes and turned the Goyard store into an elitist institution. He opened several flagship stores and developed the trademark Goyardine canvas. Today Goyard offers four product lines: travel goods, handbags, pet accessories and special orders like custom-made trunks and luggage.
No marketing is good marketing
Where brands like Louis Vuitton, Gucci and Prada spend tons on advertising, Goyard doesn’t even spend a euro on advertising. They are not focused on celebrity endorsements, fashion shows and certainly not by engaging with the media as the brand does not speak directly to the press. Goyard is only focused on artisanal craftmanship which is why they have such a limited supply of merchandise. However this mystery and limited supply has proved to work in their favor, as Goyard’s items are on the wish list of many celebrities and royalties.
Goyard has been personalizing its products for over more than a century and has continued this service up to today. Goyard Boutiques worldwide will accept your product for personalization, but the items will be sent into one of the three painting workshops located in: San Francisco, Tokyo or Carcassonne, France, this is why it takes around 6 weeks to finish the personalization. Just like each Goyard bag, the personalization is painted by hand by artisans, trained at the company’s headquarter in Carcasonne. You can choose from initials and stripes but aside from that you can also bring a design of your own, popular choices are animals, flowers and country flags.
Goyard only draws the crown symbol for royalty. The brand forbade department store Barneys from painting the crown onto bags for customers who couldn’t prove royal lineage.