Designer fragrances are nothing new. From YSL and Balenciaga to mass brands like Guess and Jacob, most fashion companies have an eau de parfum (or several) in their brand portfolio. Now the big players in the footwear industry are getting in on the game too. To date, the companies making this jump are mass retailers but we can’t help but wonder if we’ll smell the essence of Brian Atwood or Christian Louboutin in the near future (the closet we’ve come so far is that Christian Louboutin’s goddaughter, Italian model, Elisa Sednaoui is the face of the newest fragrance by Roberto Cavalli, due out in 2012). Here are four footwear brands currently making the move from pumps to perfume:
Launched in spring 2011, Jimmy Choo’s self-titled, oriental-inspired scent is described as “feminine” and “sensual” and is available in Eau de Parfum, Eau de Toilette, and shower gel and body lotion. With Chief Creative Officer Tamara Mellon’s recent announcement that she’ll step down from the company, we can only surmise that the addition of a signature scent to the brand she helped develop from the ground up is a life’s goal fulfilled. What’s next for Ms. Mellon? We see this savvy entrepreneur starting up a lifestyle brand under her own name — perhaps a Tamara Mellon fragrance is planned for the future.
Canadian favourite footwear company Aldo just launched a (fairly conceptual) fragrance collection inspired by colour. A is for Aldo is a five-piece collection with primary colours (red, yellow and blue) for women and a separate red and yellow for men as well. Just in time for the holiday shopping season, it will be interesting to see how Aldo’s loyal customer base takes to their foray into fragrance. The pricing is of note too: The fragrances will range from $15 to $45; so they are a prime add on to any shoes purchase.
In 2013, the legendary French brand Repetto, renowned for its stylish ballet flats and dance-inspired accessories will launch their signature fragrance. Evolving from ballet shoemaker to ballet flat and dance-inspired shoe designer (with successful collaborations with Opening Ceremony and Rodarte), Repetto clearly already knows how to transform. Signed with Inter Parfums SA (who handle fragrances for Burberry and Lanvin) Repetto is set to launch a few scents over the next 13 years. Here’s hoping for ballet-inspired perfume bottles, too.
More new perfume and scents from footwear designers on the next page …
Coming this January, Nine West will launch their fragrance Love Fury. With a clever stopper in the shape of a stiletto heel, this fragrance features notes of rose, mandarin, jasmine, sandalwood, musk and amber. To synergize the debut scent with the footwear collection, Nine West will also release the Love Fury pointy toe platform pump at the same time.
When you really think about footwear branching out into fragrance, it’s not that far of a stretch. When mass retailer The Gap launched its original quad of fragrances Heaven, Grass, Earth and Day back in 1994, no one batted an eye: It was a progression of “the brand.” Here we have footwear companies moving into the fragrance industry doing the same thing. As we all know, more and more fashion companies are selling a “lifestyle” and not just clothes, and a signature scent is but a natural evolution in the forming of a shoe brand behemoth. The question is: will this beauty trend branch from mass retail to the niche luxury market? (Fingers crossed for a Charlotte Olympia “Fruit Pump” spritz in the near future!)
For the latest in fashion, beauty and culture, sign up to receive ELLE's daily newsletter.