Let’s celebrate the 20 year anniversary of Editions de Parfums Frédéric Malle. Born in the year 2000, as the result of Frédéric Malle’s mission to restore the dignity of haute parfumerie. A desire to return to the fundamentals of the craft: its authors, the perfumers, their expertise, exceptional ingredients, and an artistic approach to perfumery. Born into the world of perfume (his grandfather was the founder of Parfums Christian Dior) and with more than thirty years of experience behind him, Frédéric Malle is the world’s greatest perfumery expert. The greatest perfumers in the world have placed their confidence in him, joining forces with him in this venture, delighted at the opportunity to exercise total creative freedom, and to be able to sign their work with their own name. No marketing brief. The freedom to compose: no restriction on either quantity or quality of ingredients. Freedom from time constraints: no schedule; all that counts is the excellence of the result.
Why «Editions de Parfums»? Because Frédéric Malle works with perfumers the same way a literary editor works with his authors. Since they speak the same language and share technical expertise, Frédéric Malle is able to push perfumers to give their very best. They interact on a technical and an artistic level—no brief, no images, no following trends or targeting consumers.
Frédéric Malle’s design for the bottles.
Once finished, the perfumes are presented in a neutral flask, in elegant packaging reminiscent of the book covers of Gallimard—the most celebrated French publishing house—bearing evocative names such as Portrait of a Lady, Carnal Flower, Musc Ravageur, En Passant, Vétiver Extraordinaire, French Lover, Dans Tes Bras…. All signed by the greatest perfumers in the profession, including Dominique Ropion, Jean-Claude Ellena, Pierre Bourdon, Carlos Benaïm, Maurice Roucel and Edmond Roudnitska.
Frédéric Malle and his famous noses
For Frédéric Malle, perfumes are far more than a fashion accessory or a way to promote a brand image. Beyond ensuring the excellence of every juice, his ambition is to enable everyone to find the perfume or perfumes that perfectly suit their personality. To aid in this discovery, the advisors who staff the boutiques are Perfume Experts, qualified to give personalized consultations. Their goal is to help customers find the perfume in the collection that suits them best. Because these perfumes are all different, each one unique, they offer the greatest freedom of choice and expression for everyone, depending on their current desires, the season, their way of life, or even their next rendezvous. An invisible but powerful way to express one’s style and singularity.
Inside Frédéric Malle’s first boutique at 37 rue de Grenelle in Paris.
On June 6, 2000, Frédéric Malle opened his first Paris boutique at 37 rue de Grenelle. At a time when the self-service sale of perfumes was on the rise, Malle chose to open a boutique that would provide a luxurious setting for the perfumes he «publishes,» and to make sure to offer each visitor a personal experience. This pioneering boutique, conceived by architect Andrée Putman and Frédéric Malle, is a hybrid space combining the aesthetics and intimate comfort of a Parisian interior with the expertise of a perfume laboratory.
The boutiques of Editions de Parfums Frédéric Malle, each with its own distinctive architecture, offer a series of interpretations of this overarching idea—at once a welcoming apartment and a perfume laboratory, where you will find the same iconic features of the house: portraits of perfumers in the style of the photos of authors found in bookstores, refrigerated cabinets in which the flasks of perfumes are kept at just the right temperature (as in a laboratory), consultation spaces, and the famous and unique «smelling columns.» A patented design by Frédéric Malle himself, the smelling columns are like olfactive mirrors, allowing one to experience the complete tableau of a perfume, its entire sillage. Each in their own way, the boutiques express their founder’s quest for aesthetics, functionality, and an avant-garde approach.
As a designer, renowned expert, and art lover, Frédéric Malle heads up the design of each boutique personally, working with carefully chosen architects.
Jakob + MacFarlane and Frédéric Malle joined forces to defy the laws of nature with a sea of floating islands, suspended in time and space inside their Paris store, 13 Rue des Francs Bourgeois.
2020 marks a historic date for the house: Twenty years of audacity and creativity. Twenty years of shifting paradigms in the exacting world of perfumery. From today, and for the rest of the year, Editions de Parfums Frédéric Malle will share a series of events to celebrate this anniversary.
This week marks a new step for the house with the opening of its first boutique in China, at Shanghai’s luxurious IFC Mall, as well as a counter to open soon afterwards at SKP in Beijing. These two sales outlets see the debut of a new concept, with resolutely modern architecture, redesigned «smelling columns» with enhanced functionality, and an interactive tool to help customers select their perfume. EDPFM’s powerful fusion of ideas brought together in a new experiential space, to be rolled out internationally over the coming months.
Special Instagram Live streams will take place @fredericmalle, a window into the artistic, cinematic, and cultural influences of the founder. The perfumers of Editions de Parfums will be honored and will freely share their knowledge and their thoughts in live conversations. From September, you can also flick through the Editions online, with the launch of its new digital magazine.
Returning from the summer vacation, the house will present an entirely new Limited Edition of its iconic flasks and perfumes, restyled in anniversary colors. Seven of the most popular perfumes from the collection will be presented in new flasks, their cases elegantly clad with a frieze that tells the story of twenty years of creation.
She is languid in the bath, as on a chaise longue, as though she is taking in the sun, as though taking in Bizet, a glint with water and steam, maybe with a book in her hands, surrounded by billowing clouds of foam. Alone, of course—this is a private pleasure. She sinks into the voluptuous waters: a generous measure of rose and a mixture of amber, patchouli, and sandalwood, one might think the scent was carved in her likeness. She abandons herself to it, and it to her. She loves the intimate resonance of its perfume, dream-distilled. Perhaps it is she who is scenting the waters.
And she steps out reborn from the spume, trailing the note of this suspended moment.
The newest product you shouldn’t miss is this new addition to Editions de Parfum Frédéric Malle’s bestseller created by Dominique Ropion and Frédéric Malle:
Portrait of a Lady – The Foam Bath
Available now for €110.
PORTRAIT OF A LADY
Top Note: Rose
Middle Notes: Blackcurrant, Raspberry, Clove
Base Notes: Patchouli, Sandalwood, Frankincense
Photos: © Sandra Bauknecht and Les Editions de Parfums Frédéric Malle
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