NEW YORK — In September, Ralph Lauren Fragrances is hoping to increase its share of the women's fragrance market with the help of a certain semiprecious stone: Pure Turquoise.
The scent was developed for “a sophisticated, elegant and chic woman” in the 20- to 45-year-old age range, according to Heather Simmons, vice president of global marketing for Ralph Lauren Fragrances. She added that the stone “really ties into the heritage of Ralph Lauren,” who has used turquoise in his collections for years.
Launching in Saks Fifth Avenue and Neiman Marcus in mid-September, the Pure Turquoise fragrance will be available both in a lower-priced eau de parfum spray version and as a $350 parfum, which features one-of-a-kind “pure” turquoise bottle tops — and, incidentally, the highest price point in the brand’s history. The fragrance will roll out to Bloomingdale’s in late September and then all other U.S. doors in October for a limited distribution of 926 doors. Despite the fragrance’s limited distribution (the normal distribution for Lauren’s other fragrances is generally around 2,200 doors), executives are counting on Pure Turquoise to significantly strengthen the company’s relationship with female customers.
“This [fragrance] is a very important key to helping us get to that 15 percent share of the women’s market,” said Jack Wiswall, president of the designer fragrances division of L’Oréal USA. Wiswall added that Ralph Lauren currently holds a 10 percent share in the women’s fragrance market and a 30 percent share in the men’s market. While Wiswall would not comment on sales figures, industry sources expect Pure Turquoise to do up to $25 million in its first three months on-counter.
Pure Turquoise eaux de parfum spray will retail at $55 for 2.5 oz. and $72.50 for 4.2 oz., respectively, and the scent is priced slightly higher than Ralph Lauren’s current highest-priced women’s fragrance, Romance. In addition, a $40 Body Lotion and a Shower Gel for $37.50 will be available. Simmons said the positioning of Pure Turquoise signals the designer’s increased focus on boosting his image in the luxury market and compared the fragrance’s positioning with that of Purple Label, the brand’s upscale men’s cologne with a limited distribution. “Ralph has been trying to enhance his image lately, and we’re positioning this as the luxury fragrance in our portfolio,” she said.Developed by Annie Buzantian of Firmenich, the Pure Turquoise juice is described as a floral chypre and was inspired by the cool blue stone, according to Jennifer Mullarkey, assistant vice president, global fragrance development for Ralph Lauren. “It was easy to work off the whole idea of turquoise,” she said. “The Navajo Indians believed turquoise was a piece of the sky that fell to the earth, so we started to look at the fragrance through layers; a journey of the turquoise falling through the sky.”
Mullarkey described the notes in terms of such a journey: Cool Sky, the top note, consists of dewy cassis, indigo violet petals, lily of the valley and cactus flower; the middle note, Sun-Kissed Flowers, features night-blooming cereus, orange flower absolute, Bulgarian rose absolute and desert lily, while the bottom note, Rich Earth, contains earthen patchouli, silver birchwood, polished amber, vanilla bourbon and rum. “[The juice] brings in turquoise’s stone color itself, but also its sensuality, as well,” she said.
The company has planned both print and television advertising for Pure Turquoise, featuring dark-haired Russian model Valentina donning Ralph Lauren turquoise jewelry and simple Ralph Lauren gowns. The print campaign will make its debut in the September issue of Vogue, followed by the October issues of women’s fashion, beauty and lifestyle magazines. Both the TV and print ads were shot by photographer Bruce Weber.
In addition, the launch will be supported by 20 million-plus scent strips and 20 million scented co-op blow-ins over a three-month period, according to Wiswall. And, while he would not comment on specific figures, industry sources estimate that the company will spend between $12 million to $15 million on advertising.
“Azzedine has been one of the biggest influences in my life. He has always been such a strong, loving, fatherly figure to me. I call him Papa. His designs are indescribably unique, they are pieces of art. He knew how to make the female form look its loveliest. I have so many memories of him; my favorite might be during my first show with him in Paris. He liked me and he wanted to help me get more work. He called all his friends at Kenzo and Comme des Garcons, and asked them to book me. They said, ‘But she can’t walk!’ And he said, ‘but she has such a great ass!' His friendship and support has been the great privilege of my career. I can't imagine life without him. Repose en paix mon Papa.” - @stephanieseymour tells @wwd. #wwdfashion (📷: @steveeichner) #alaia #azzedinealaia
Azzedine Alaïa, flanked by two of his closest friends, models Stephanie Seymour and Naomi Campbell.
He designed Seymour’s dress for her 1995 wedding to Peter Brant, and treated Campbell (who famously called him Papa), like a daughter. For more on the legendary designer, tap the link in bio. #wwdfashion #alaia #azzedinealaia
Azzedine Alaïa's “I-did-it-my-way” ethos stood out starkly at a time when brands are experimenting with consumer-facing fashion shows, coed formats and trans-seasonal collections – anything to perk up lackluster sales of ready-to-wear in an age of Insta-everything. “It’s not creation anymore. This becomes a purely industrial approach,” the late designer told WWD in an interview last year. “But anyway, the rhythm of collections is so stupid. It’s unsustainable. There are too many collections.” Read more about the iconic designer’s life and work on wwd.com, link in bio. #wwdfashion #azzedinealaia (📷: @WWD Archive, 1986) #alaia
Sneaker reselling app @goat’s latest exhibit, "The Greatest: New York," tells the story of New York's sneaker culture. To celebrate the exhibit, an intimate crowd gathered on Thursday night at the pop-up gallery space, located at Platform in Culver City, to hear guest speaker and illustrator @esymai talk about her own rise in streetwear and women in the business. "For me I'm just someone who is creative. I like to create things," said Chang. #wwdfashion
Azzedine Alaïa, one of the most iconic couturiers of the modern era whose body-con designs defined Eighties fashion, has died in Paris. The diminutive Tunisian-born designer, known for his structured knitted dresses with fitted waists and impeccably cut, figure-hugging second skin silhouettes was deeply admired by his peers, and counted supermodel Naomi Campbell - his adoptive daughter - among his inner circle, one of a gang of glamazons including Farida Khelfa, Carla Bruni and Stephanie Seymour who became ambassadors of his style. (📷: Alexandre Guirkinger) #wwdblast