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MILAN — Seizing on the success of Versace’s Vanitas eau de parfum, Euroitalia, the brand’s licensee, is launching an eau de toilette version of the scent, which will occupy an elite position among Versace fragrances.
This story first appeared in the June 8, 2012 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
“Vanitas eau de toilette continues to carry the idea of ‘couture’ that the original eau de parfum was born with,” said Gianni Sgariboldi, president of Euroitalia. “But it was conceived with an even fresher olfactory nuance and combined with a ‘very Versace’ packaging design, for all the women who love the elegance and exclusivity that are part of the brand’s DNA. We expect another hit product.”
Versace creative director Donatella Versace said fashion always plays a starring role in the brand’s fragrance line. “For my brother, Versace was a lifestyle and not just a fashion house,” she said. “This concept has always been fundamental for me.…If the dresses are sexy and appealing — a modern mix of fashion and rock ’n’ roll, with a skillful Italian touch — then the fragrance, too, has to reflect this combination of elements.”
Euroitalia has worked with Versace since 2005, and has about 10 of the brand’s fragrances on the market today, according to Sgariboldi. Industry sources calculate Vanitas edt could bring in about $20 million to $25 million wholesale in its first year on the market.
The new Vanitas will keep the same clear, rectangular bottle with a rounded edge — evocative of a woman’s bare shoulder — as the original, but the packaging marks a departure: a white box with flowery baroque designs in gold along the sides, in keeping with Versace founder Gianni Versace’s exuberant style.
“Recently I consulted our archive and found many interesting things which I drew inspiration from,” explained Versace, noting that her collections subsequently reflected these vintage motifs. “I also used yellow and gold a lot, which are typical Versace colors.…Our brand is filled with iconic, recognizable elements that our customers really love, and which I always try to use and to emphasize. So I thought, ‘Why not show our customers what the real Versace style is, starting with the fragrance’s packaging?’”
Claudio Tenan, Euroitalia’s export director, said Vanitas edt will arrive in Europe this month and in the U.S. in spring 2013. “In Asia, it could arrive in 2012 with the exception of China and Hong Kong, where it will arrive in 2013,” Tenan said, adding the distribution plan is the same for Vanitas edt as it was for the edp, targeting selective retailers such as Neiman Marcus, Saks Fifth Avenue and Nordstrom in the U.S. He estimated a total worldwide distribution of 10,000 doors for the fragrance and said no retail exclusives are currently planned.
Vanitas edt will be available in three sizes, at a slightly lower price range than the edp, but still more expensive than the brand’s other fragrances. In the U.S., a 1-oz. bottle will retail for $52, a 1.7-oz. bottle will retail for $70, and a 3.4-oz. bottle for $91. A vanity bath and shower gel ($37), 6.7-oz. body lotion ($43) and 1.7-oz. perfumed deodorant ($38) will also be available.
In Europe, the fragrance bottles will sell for 46.50 euros, 69.50 euros and 91 euros respectively. The bath and shower gel will cost 38 euros, the body lotion 43.50 euros and the deodorant 38 euros.
Dora Baghriche of Firmenich, who worked on the first Vanitas fragrance, was also the nose for the edt. The fragrance blends rose petals and freesia with a heart of osmanthus and tiaré flowers, a type of Tahitian gardenia also used in the edp, over a base of black tea and cedarwood.
American model Lindsey Wixson was the original face of Vanitas, and the ad campaign will continue to use the images produced by Fabien Baron and Craig McDean, which show an ash-blonde Wixson with a smoky, steely blue gaze turning toward the camera, hands resting on the hips of her sexy black dress.
“This fragrance is for a very Versace woman, that is a woman who is strong and sure of herself, who is not afraid of being the center of attention and wants to be noticed,” said Versace. “I chose Lindsey because she is perfect for this fragrance. She has a strong look and personality: she has a fresh, rebellious beauty, a mix of charm, femininity and character. She’s a real Versace woman, the latest in a series of wonderful blonde women who have embodied the maison’s spirit.”