Married for close to 20 years, Laura and Harry Slatkin are home fragrance luminaries. Here, how their love bloomed—and why it almost didn’t.
Laura Slatkin: He was dating a friend of mine. I thought she was wasting her time.
Harry Slatkin: I couldn’t stand Laura when I first met her.
L.S.: Two years later, I was chairing a charity event and we needed an additional chair...someone suggested Harry. For the sake of the charity, I agreed to meet him for drinks. I remember that night like it was yesterday. He looked so handsome...so gentlemanly...I remember saying to myself, “hmmm...”.
H.S.: We became best friends. We did everything together. We went out to dinner...we went to the movies. In the summertime, we drove back and forth to the Hamptons together. I called her every night; we became very, very close. I was a popular bachelor at the time—I still had all my hair. And after every blind date, I raced home to talk to Laura.
L.S.: I developed a huge crush on Harry but never said anything for an entire year. I waited for Harry to express an interest. But nothing ever happened. One day Harry asked me if I wanted to go to Atlantic City for the weekend. I thought, “This is very serious, he’s asked me to go away with him for the weekend.” So I went shopping—I bought a beautiful new dress and a very sexy silk negligee. I got a manicure... pedicure...I had my hair done. I was all set. Nothing happened. I was very upset. I vowed I would get Harry out of my head. It was time to self-protect.
H.S.: That year I was honored at the Bachelors’ Ball. Laura was my date. We had a great time. The next morning, a good friend called and said, “Harry, I was going to set you up with my friend but I can’t. I saw you dancing with Laura and I can tell by the way she looks at you....Laura is in love with you.” I hung up the phone and I said to myself, “Wow! I’m in love with Laura.” I decided right then I wanted to change the relationship so I asked Laura if she wanted to go to Atlantic City for the weekend.
L.S.: I was happy to go because I wasn’t doing anything that weekend anyway. I worked on Wall Street at the time and we just brought public Sam & Libby Shoes and the company gave everyone a Sam & Libby T-shirt with pictures of shoes all over it. I tossed that into my suitcase. I was good to go!
H.S.: We gambled, but I had no interest. At 9 p.m. I said, “Let’s go back to our rooms, get into something more comfortable and watch a movie together.”
L.S.: Get into something comfortable? All I had was my Sam & Libby T-shirt. Harry knocked at my door, and there he stood: monogrammed pajamas, a Sulka robe, velvet slippers and a waft of cologne trailing behind him.
H.S.: Out of the bathroom came Laura in her T-shirt. I thought to myself, “I need to work on her lingerie.” A trip to Montenapoleone and La Perla was added to my list.
L.S.: We watched Home Alone 2: Lost in New York. We lay down, and Harry put his arm around me. From that moment on we stayed frozen. Neither of us moved an inch all night.
H.S.: On the way home, we stopped for coffee and there was a blind man selling heart-shaped key chains that said “I Love You.” I bought one and leaned over and kissed Laura. She smiled.
L.S.: That following Friday I invited Harry over for a romantic dinner. Three months later we were engaged.
H.S.: That amazing foundation of friendship has enabled us to work together, overcome challenges and keep us happily married for 19 years.
L.S.: For Valentine’s Day this year I gave Harry a heart-shaped box from Tiffany and inside was the key chain. I still have it after all these years. The “I Love You” has faded a bit, but not in our relationship.
There'll be no rest for those headed to Europe for men's, as Paris just closed the gap with Milan. According to a provisional calendar released by the Chambre Syndicale, Paris Men's Week will now open a day earlier on January 16. See new highlights on the official lineup on WWD.com. #wwdnews #wwdfashion (📷: @kukukuba)
BREAKING: Jonathan Saunders is leaving @DVF. The designer has resigned from his position as chief creative officer of Diane von Furstenberg, the company said in a statement on Friday. At the time of his hire, von Furstenberg said Saunders’ arrival symbolized and facilitated her stepping back from the day-to-day duties that occupy the work of a full-time creative director. The British designer joined DVF in May 2016 and was in charge of all product categories. #wwdnews
For @versace_official’s spring ad campaign, the brand emphasized the archival prints from the spring tribute collection dedicated to the late Gianni Versace. Closing out the show were five of Gianni’s favorite models: Cindy, Naomi, Carla, Helena, and Claudia. Bowing on December 18, the new campaign is yet another tribute to supermodel-dom as the images by Steven Meisel are fronted by @iamnaomicampbell, @cturlington, @gisele and more. #wwdfashion
Four-time Oscar-nominated actress Annette Bening has been waiting 20 years to play Gloria Graham in "Film Stars Don't Die in Liverpool," which will be released on December 29. The movie about Graham – a Hollywood star known for her controversial relationship with a younger Englishman named Peter Turner – is based off a memoir Turned wrote. "She felt vulnerable to him, because she loved him, she really did love him. And anyone that we really truly are in love with, we re vulnerable to in a very deep way," said Bening. Read our full interview with the modern icon of an actress on WWD.com. #wwdeye (📷: @ninebagatelles; Styled by @cristinaehrlich)
The crisp white button down: a staple that can be dressed up or down and accessorized throughout the decades. Here, on a Art Basel-goer in 2017 on the left and on the iconic Audrey Hepburn in “Roman Holiday” in 1953 on the right. #tbt #wwdfashion (📷: Andrew Morales)
Known for her work with @victoriassecret, 25-year-old model @georgiafowler is raising her profile in Hollywood. Fowler stars in @vincecamuto’s holiday campaign, which launched in partnership with “Pitch Perfect 3.” “Almost every shoot with Vince Camuto, I’ve had to face a fear…It was definitely a challenge. I’m so grateful for it, though. I’ve always wanted to be a pop star, so that was the perfect chance,” Fowler said. Head to WWD.com to read about Fowler’s experience modeling, including at the #VSFashionShow, and her relationship with Nick Jonas. #wwdeye (📷: @jilliansollazzo)
EXCLUSIVE: Huda Kattan just became the first beauty influencer to land a major beauty deal. Kattan's business, @hudabeauty, has received a minority investment from private equity firm TSG Consumer Partners. The brand, which industry sources say is on track to do $200 million in retail sales for 2017, will receive support on product, retail and geographic expansion through the deal. Get all the details on the deal and read @_a_collins' interview with Kattan on WWD.com. Link in bio. (📷: @jgreenery) #wwdbeauty #wwdnews
Peruvian model @juanaburga_official – who is known for walking the runways of @rodarte, @viviennewestwood and @torybuch – is making the move to the big screen with drama “Los Últimos.” The film premiered in Argentina in November and arrives in the U.S. and Europe in 2018. On making the switch from modeling to acting, Burga told WWD: “It’s a completely different thing – a lot of people think it’s similar or try to connect things, especially like getting used to the camera or being looked at all the time or playing these different characrers, but film is a completely different story.” #wwdeye (📷: @jgreenery)
London’s newly opened @designmuseum will look back on the life and work of Azzedine Alaïa in a show that the designer helped to curate before he died of heart failure last month. The retrospective, which Alaïa had worked on with Mark Wilson, chief curator of the @groningermuseum, will look at the impact of his work worldwide. The show, “Azzedine Alaïa: The Couturier,” will run from May 10 to October 7. Read more about the exhibit on WWD.com #wwdnews #wwdfashion (📷: @zefashioninsider)