When crafting a signature scent, it’s important for a fashion house to encapsulate it’s beliefs as a brand. Which is exactly what legendary label Valentino did when constructing the essence of their latest scent for women, Valentina Eau de Parfum by Valentino. Each molecule in the juice, each angle of the bottle and each still shot in the campaign was carefully built around the label’s core value: creating beauty.
This one was just one of the things we learned while getting an exclusive behind the scenes look at how Valentina came to be. Held in the sleek, all-white space of the Valentino showroom, the tour began among some of the elegant confections of the Valentino Spring 2012 collection. Resplendent in lace, tulle, and macrame, the pieces boasted all the delicately feminine motifs that the brand has famously become associated with. And that is the idea from which Valentina was born. The Valentino woman, we were told, can be anyone. She embraces feminine touches such as ruffles, bows and florals, yet is also fiercely strong, confident and unique. The scent needed to match that elegant balance of the Valentino woman.
First, the design of the bottle was a key element in expressing the house’s well known attention to detail and sense of luxury. The color palette was created on romance, infusing colors such as taupe, rose, beige and pink. The general shape of the bottle was taken from vintage perfume bottles of Italy, which have always been seen as objects of desire. The ultimate accessory. The round shape was designed to be reminiscent of a woman’s curves, again reiterating an overt sense of femininity. The final and most important element was the creation of the bottle’s adornments, a small bouquet of couture flowers. Exquisitely and delicately crafted from laser-cut leather, the graceful spray of flowers is the very essence of Valentina, and of the Valentino label.
Once the bottle design was finalized, a face needed to be picked to represent the essence of the scent. Valentino chose Danish model, Freja Beha as the quintessential Valentina woman — aristocratically elegant but also bold, carefree and effortless. Valentina is beautiful, radiant with charms belonging to a modern heiress. She’s seductive, sophisticated, unconventional, and charismatic and creates her own style. To bring this woman to life, the label created a moving image ad, in which Beha plays this modern heiress, tied down to the traditions of her wealthy family but yearning to get out and explore the beautiful sights of Rome. Her parents are planning an elaborate party for her but she successfully eludes them and slips out to wander the streets and eventually join her friends while her family and their staff run around the city to look for her. This sense of effortless playfulness and seduction were key in expressing the feeling of Valentina. Watch the full t.v. ad here:
We were extremely lucky to be joined by one of the perfumers, Olivier Cresp who, along with Alberto Morillas, created the decadent potion of Valentina. Cresp walked us through each of the levels of scent construction — base notes, heart and top notes — with a fun and sensory break down of the ingredients. We first explored the heart (my personal favorite), which consisted of orange flower, jasmine and wild strawberry for what Cresp described as, “a playful, juicy and fun addition”.
We then moved onto the top notes, which consisted of two very distinct flavors: bergamot and truffle. Bergamot’s citrus fruit essence smelled very familiar, yet the truffle scent was very unusual, as it’s often affiliated with cooking rather than perfume. Cresp explained truffle is a regional Italian ingredient that is very rare and very expensive so it is not commonly used in perfumeries. In fact, Valentina is the first time that truffle molecules were ever used in a fragrance. The two scents combined created a very spicy, sensual overtone.
And lastly, we came upon the base notes, which also contained two main flavors: cedarwood and amber. This was the muskier undertones that lingered on the skin while the lighter notes had faded away. Cresp explained that the breakdown of amber was actually a mixture of vanilla, tonka beans and labdanum raisins, which made the overall smell light and sweet.
Overall, the structure of the scent was carefully faceted to include fruit, flowers and amber — three elements that created Valentino’s iconic sense of sophistication. Valentina Eau de Parfum is available now at Neiman Marcus, Bergdorf Goodman, Bloomingdales, Saks, Nordstrom and Valentino boutiques. In addition to a 1.7 oz. and 2.7 oz. eau de parfum, the scent also comes in a Velvet Shower Gel, Body Oil and Satin Body Milk. It’s a perfectly decadent experience for spring and we were thrilled to be privy to such a fascinating experience!
Photo Source: Second City Style
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Tags: Alberto Morillas, beauty, Bergdorf Goodman, Bloomingdale's, designers, events, Freja Beha, luxury, Neiman Marcus, Nordstrom, Olivier Cresp, perfumes, Saks, Valentina Body Oil, Valentina Eau de Parfum by Valentino, Valentina Satin Body Milk, Valentina Velvet Shower Gel, Valentino, Valentino boutiques