PARIS — Clara Molloy wants finding Memo to be a voyage of discovery.
The 35-year-old book publisher opened a boutique by that name, which carries a collection of scents inspired by her travels, in the tony Saint Germain des Prés neighbourhood here during the fall.
Also dubbed Memo (which is short for memoire, the French word for memory), her fragrances are meant to be reminiscent of Molloy's visits to destinations as far afield as Burma's Lake Inlé and glitzy Saint-Tropez.
"I had three tons of material — travel diaries, history books, metro tickets," explained Molloy, who then identified particular sensations experienced in those places, like warmth or nightfall in the desert, and sought to re-create them in scent.
Located on the Rue des Saint Pères, Memo's 160-square-foot store was designed to suggest travel. A light-infused wall depicts Lake Inlé, while a star is carved into the ceiling. And a gold-painted toy locomotive hums around the brand's bright white-and-gold products.
"The train evokes traveling and childhood memories," said Molloy.
Memo's lineup includes Les Echappées, four scents by International Flavors & Fragrances perfumer Aliénor Massenet, including Inlé, evoking misty Lake Inlé with notes of bergamot, osmanthus and iris. Lalibela, a chypre blended to convey the mystery of the Ethiopian city of that name, includes notes of coconut, orchid and patchouli.
Siwa, a vanilla-based fragrance concocted to recall an oasis in the Egyptian desert, has notes of cinnamon, narcissus and absolute whiskey. Meantime, Sundance, a fragrant ode to Utah's annual film festival, contains notes of tuberose, pear, bergamot, lemon and sandalwood. Each 50-ml. eau de parfum spray retails at 80 euros, or $118 at current exchange.
Other locales inspired a 30-unit collection of home fragrances, bath items, scent sachets and candles, including the champagne-infused Sexy Saint-Tropez candle.
At Le Bon Marché here, where Memo unveiled a corner in November, its sales have been among the highest of all fragrance brands, not only niche, according to the department store's beauty buyer Marie Lassagne. "Passing customers stop even if they weren't looking for a fragrance," she said. Memo's typical customer is a young, fashionable woman looking for a new fragrance brand, Lassagne added.Among the four scents, the bestsellers at both Le Bon Marché and at London's Harvey Nichols Knightsbridge store, where Memo bowed a 325-square-foot shop-in-shop plus a corner on the ground floor in November, are Inlé and Lalibela. "Exclusive niche fragrances are doing very well within our fragrance offering," said Daniela Rinaldi, head of perfumery and concessions at Harvey Nichols, adding that Memo's typical customers are in their mid-20s and above. "Their drive is to find something first, something that reflects their fashion edge, and mirrors that they are savvy with regards to what is hot and new."
Memo rolled out to Harvey Nichols' regional doors in Leeds, Manchester, Edinburgh and Birmingham, and bowed its e-commerce site, mymemo.com, last November. Industry sources estimate the Memo brand will generate first-year wholesale sales of $300,000.
While Molloy may have turned her nose to fragrance manufacturing, she hasn't turned her back on books altogether. Her first work, cowritten with Carine Soyer, "22 Perfumers, a Creative Process," explores perfumery through interviews with noses such as Jacques Cavallier, Jean-Paul Guerlain and Jacques Polge. It was published in December 2007.
Molloy hopes to explore new geographic territories with Memo — including the U.S., where she plans to introduce the brand this year.
As one of the most recognizable models in the world, Christy Turlington Burns has an insider’s view of the fashion industry and the allegations of sexual harassment swirling around it. “I can say that harassment and mistreatment have always been widely known and tolerated in the industry. The industry is surrounded by predators who thrive on the constant rejection and loneliness so many of us have experiences at some point in our careers,” Turlington told WWD, along with her suggestions for how the modeling world should protect younger women and men. Read more on WWD.com. Link in bio. (📷: Tony Palmieri) #wwdnews
@asics America has tapped a new brand ambassador: famed DJ/record producer @steveaoki. This initiative is intended to set the tone for the new brand identity and philosophy and will include partnerships with influencers and in-store and off-line activations that will continue into next year. This is Asics’ most significant marketing effort in two decades, and is expected to attract younger consumers to the brand. #wwdfashion
24-year-old Jean Prounis is redefining the rules of jewelry. Formerly a studio assistant to Jemima Kirke and a design apprentice at Ghuran, she focuses on handcrafted subtleties and ancient goldsmithing techniques. “There was a really sterile feel in the environment and I wanted to have jewelry with character that shapes how you wear it everyday,” Prounis said. Each piece is hand made in New York, either by Prounis or three other jewelers in the district. #wwdfashion
“These collections continue to build on that vision, empowering differently abled adults to express themselves through fashion,” said @tommyhilfiger of his line of adaptive apparel, which launches today. The line consists of 37 men’s and 34 women’s styles based upon the pieces from the spring Tommy Hilfiger sportswear collection. #wwdnews
“Stranger Things” is getting a new cast member for season 2. Meet @sadiesink_, the 15-year-old who will be joining the Netflix series for its new season. You may recognize her from “The Glass Castle” with Brie Larson and Woody Harrelson, but the Texas native’s next role goes in an entirely different direction. She describes her character, Max, as “a rough and tumble skater girl [who] becomes friends with the boys at school.” The second season debuts on October 27. (📷: @jgreenery) #wwdeye
Amid the Harvey Weinstein controversy, there’s another sector that’s being put under the spotlight for sexual abuse: the modeling industry. While rumors about abuse and sexual harassment of female and male models — and the photographers, agents and others who perpetrated it — have circulated within the fashion world for years, model @cameronrussell started posting stories from models on Instagram last week about abusive situations they’ve encountered — from sexual harassment and molestation to attempted rape. Over 75 have weighed in so far. Read more on WWD.com. Link in bio. #wwdnews
To celebrate its 16th anniversary, @dylanscandybar tapped designers and celebrities to create mosaics out of candy. The mosaics will be auctioned off to support the philanthropic cause of each participant’s choice. Pictured here is the mural created by @aliceandolivia's Stacey Bendet. For a first look at some of the other artwork being unveiled tonight, go to WWD.com. #wwdeye
The annual Veuve Clicquot Polo Classic in Pacific Palisades this weekend drew Kate Hudson, Tracee Ellis Ross, Laura Dern and more. See pictures of the star-studded event on WWD.com. (📷: @chelsealaurenla) #wwdeye
In his new book “Hollywood Royale,” Andy Warhol’s Protégé Matthew Rolston celebrates the Eighties revival of Hollywood glamour. Featuring more than 100 portraits taken by Rolston from 1977 to 1993, the book contains photos of icons like Michael Jackson, Cyndi Lauper, and @drewbarrymore, pictured here in 1991. “Hollywood Royale,” out today, will be accompanied by an exhibition opening at Los Angeles’ Fahey/Klein Gallery on March 1. #wwdeye