By  on February 13, 2009

A warrior queen is cutting a swath through Harrods’ beauty department. Boadicea The Victorious, a 17-unit fragrance line inspired by the first-century queen of the same name, was among the winners in the London store over the holidays.

“[The fragrances have] already become a cult must-have,” says Marigay McKee, fashion and beauty director at Harrods. “We’re always looking for products that stand out in terms of innovation and ingredients, coupled with luxurious packaging. I love that the entire range is inherently British—the pewter flacons are specially crafted in Sheffield and the scents are blended in the Cotswolds.”


Some customers are so devoted that they’ve snapped up extraordinary quantities, says founder Michael Boadi. One woman bought 26 bottles of Seductive, while in January, a male customer snapped up four flacons of each of the line’s fragrances as well as display stands to better show them off in his four luxurious Dubai homes, Boadi said. (A 120-ml. eau de parfum costs about $279; the pewter bottle, about $384, and a crystal fl acon, about $802.)

A hairstylist-turned–fragrance aficionado, Boadi spent eight years working on the line before launching in Harrods in November. After shooting with such famed photographers as Nick Knight, Steven Klein and Mario Testino, Boadi decided to turn his hand—or rather his nose—to eaux, pairing scents with emotions to make choosing a snap. “If you spray Majestic, that’s how you feel, and if you spray Seductive, you’re going to go out and get that man,” he says. That could very well have been the rallying cry of Queen Boadicea, who led an insurrection against the Romans in 60 AD.

Nicknamed “Queen Boadicea” by his pal Pat McGrath, he choose the brand name as a play on his own. “I consider her a muse,” he says of the makeup maestro, adding that he created The Explorer and Complex, both citrus scents with notes of leather and tobacco, in her image. (The floral Delicate is an ode to Kate Moss, meantime.) “The fragrances celebrate female independence and empowerment,” he says.

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