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L’Artisan Parfumeur is gearing up for a trio of fragrance launches this fall, a slate of introductions that’s marked by collaborations with two independent perfumeries.
This story first appeared in the July 23, 2008 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
In October, the Paris-based niche fragrance house will introduce its own new scent, called Fleur de Liane, or “Vine Flower,” exclusively at eight Barneys New York stores and five of its L’Artisan boutiques in the U.S. That same month, a scent that L’Artisan developed in conjunction with Aedes de Venustas — the perfume boutique located in New York — will be unveiled at the shop.
Then, executives anticipate launching in November a fragrance that L’Artisan is developing for Los Angeles-based perfumery Scent Bar.
Like the Fleur de Liane and Aedes de Venustas scents, the Scent Bar fragrance will be unisex and blended by perfumer Bertrand Duchaufour, who became L’Artisan’s in-house perfumer six months ago, following his departure from Symrise.
François Duquesne, president of L’Artisan Parfumeur U.S., said that bringing in Duchaufour has given L’Artisan more freedom to do custom collaborations. “It propels you to haute couture in a way,” he said.
Collaborations account for roughly 5 percent of L’Artisan’s business, according to Duquesne, who said they are a burgeoning segment, as evidenced by the company’s work with Burberry Group plc and Bottega Veneta for home fragrances. “People want a project that speaks to them and is close to their roots. We have the resources,” he said. “We will grow it because of the presence of Bertrand.”
L’Artisan’s Fleur de Liane fragrance was inspired by Duchaufour’s travels to the Panamanian island of Bahia Honda during the rainy season. “The idea was to capture the scent of the forest,” he said, adding the result is an “abstract concept, [the aroma] of an imaginary flower.”
Fleur de Liane, an eau de toilette, mixes ozonic, marine and green accords with notes of marigold, tuberose and magnolia flower and woody and mossy undertones. It will be available in 100-ml. and 50-ml. versions for $135 and $95, respectively, and will be accompanied by a body cream available in a 50-ml. jar for $50 or in a set of three jars for $120.
Plans call for Fleur de Liane to be launched in the U.S. and the rest of the world simultaneously in October. It will then be rolled out to 50 doors in the U.S. in November, and industry sources estimate the scent could generate first-year retail sales of $1 million worldwide.
The fragrance that L’Artisan is developing for Scent Bar has been code-named Chaparral for Southern California’s dominant dry shrub plant community that the fragrance’s notes intend to capture. During a trip to Los Angeles earlier this month, Duchaufour visited Griffith Park in the eastern Santa Monica Mountains.
“We will smell everything — the air, the soil and the burnt part of the park,” he said prior to visiting the park. “I will have in my mind certain ingredients, raw and synthetic. I really want to explore the burnt tree effect.”
The limited edition scent, which is currently slated for a 500-unit production run, will likely get a new moniker when it is released in the fall at $155 for 100 ml. It is to be carried at Scent Bar and the retailer’s online store, luckyscent.com.
“We thought, ‘Let’s do a fragrance based on L.A. that is not based on artifice,’” said Adam Eastwood, who owns Scent Bar with Franco Wright. “We spend a lot of time in Griffith Park, and that says a lot about who we are.” Of L’Artisan, he said, “They really have a history of painting a picture with a fragrance and that struck us as something we wanted to do.”
The Aedes de Venustas scent, a woody-oriental eau de parfum, was unveiled at a luncheon held at the Manhattan home of Marjorie and Michael Loeb on Thursday.
The scent features top notes of orange, pink pepper, cardamom and incense; a heart of black pepper, rose, iris and cedarwood, and base notes of patchouli, coffee, opoponax, benzoin and tree moss. Notes of white musk and vanilla have been added for a soft touch.
While its olfactory structure is similar to a candle and room spray that L’Artisan did for Aedes de Venustas in 2005, noted Robert Gerstner, who owns the shop with Karl Bradl, the edp features new accords like spice, chypre, balsam and leather.
The Aedes de Venustas edp will be available in a 100-ml. faceted burgundy glass bottle for $185 and will initially be carried exclusively at the boutique. Industry sources estimate the scent could garner first-year retail sales of $200,000.