By and  on May 12, 2008

Hermès held a luncheon atop the Gramercy Park Hotel in Manhattan Thursday to mark the U.S. launch of the house's newest scent, Un Jardin Après La Mousson, at Saks Fifth Avenue.

The fragrance, which Saks began carrying in late April, will stay exclusively at the chain — and at Hermès' stores and Web site — until Sept. 1, when it is rolled out to less than 400 doors, including Neiman Marcus, Nordstrom, Bergdorf Goodman, Barneys New York and Bloomingdale's.

The luncheon also celebrated the efforts of Charity: Water, which has raised $3 million in the last 18 months for 624 clean water projects in 11 countries, according to Scott Harrison, the organization's president and founder. (Through an affiliation between Saks and Charity: Water, some $70,000 has been raised in less than three weeks to build wells in areas of India, Africa and Central America, where wells can be built for $5,000, and provide 400 to 500 people with water, said Harrison.)

Hermès' newest scent, which could do nearly $5 million in retail sales during its first year in the U.S., was inspired by the monsoon rains of India. Staying true to Hermès' year-long tribute to India, Robert Chavez, president and chief executive officer of Hermès USA, announced to the luncheon crowd of about 40 that Hermès would sponsor the construction of a Charity: Water well in India.

Saks executives in attendance at the event, included Ron Frasch, president and chief merchandising officer, Terron Schaefer, group senior vice president of creative and marketing, and Deborah Walters, senior vice president and general merchandise manager of cosmetics, fragrances and intimate.

— Matthew W. Evans

Jo Wood Does Daily-Use Products

Jo Wood is branching out with a line of natural beauty products meant for daily use.

The wife of Rolling Stones rocker Ronnie Wood has begun rolling out Everyday, a six-unit line of bath and body products, which is an offshoot of Wood's three-year-old Jo Wood Organics brand.

"Jo wanted organic products that can be used every day," said Quentin Higham, general manager of Jo Wood Organics. "The existing lineup of bath and body oils is quite gift-oriented and they take time to use. Commercially we wanted bath and body products that would encourage repeat purchases on a regular basis."Everyday is also more accessibly priced than the original collection. A 200-ml. bottle of Everyday body cream goes for 24 pounds, or $46.82 at current exchange, whereas a 200-ml. flacon of Jo Wood Organics body lotion sells for 35 pounds, or $68.29.

"I wanted to do something more affordable," said Wood, adding the Everyday lineup also has a slightly younger bent. The line's salt scrubs, body mousses and body creams are available in two fragrances. The Tula lineup features notes of frangipani, jasmine, ylang-ylang, sandalwood and anise, while the Langa collection has notes of orange, Sicilian lemon, cedarwood, vanilla and neroli.

A 200-ml. jar of Exfoliating Salt Scrub retails at 24 pounds, or $46.82, while a 200-ml. pump bottle of Cleansing Body Mousse is priced at 15 pounds, or $29.27.

In line with Wood's clean living philosophy, Everyday, which is certified by Ecocert, is presented in recyclable packaging and formulas were concocted using 99 percent natural ingredients. Products were also made sans genetically modified ingredients, parabens, phthalates, petroleum derivatives, mineral oils or sodium laureth sulphates.

Wood's daughter Leah is Everyday's spokesmodel, appearing on point-of-sale materials and the brand's Web site. The line is being introduced through department stores in the U.K., including House of Fraser, Selfridges, Harvey Nichols and John Lewis, as well as on

Industry sources estimate combined sales of Jo Wood Organics and Everyday will reach 1 million pounds, or $2 million, at retail in the year following Everyday's launch.

Higham said the brand will focus on bolstering domestic sales over the next 12 to 18 months before planning further inroads internationally. Jo Wood Organics is carried in a handful of stores in the U.S. and Europe. In other brand news, Jo Wood Organics has appointed Fragrance Factory to manage sales development and account handling for both its lines in the U.K. and internationally.

— Brid Costello

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