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La Chanelphile

November 5, 2010

Chanel Limited Edition 2010 Fragrance Wardrobe

Each holiday season Chanel unveils its annual fragrance wardrobe – a limited edition set of 5 mini bottles of its most popular fragrances.  Every Christmas I would walk by the Chanel fragrance counter and eye the set and wish for it.  Last Christmas, my wish was granted when my little sister got my the 2009 fragrance wardrobe as a gift!

This year, the Chanel 2010 Fragrance Wardrobe is delicious as ever featuring five demi Parfums, 0.12 oz. each of N°5, Coco Mademoiselle, Coco, N°19 and Allure in a deluxe gift box.  This makes a wonderful gift for any Chanelphile and is a great way to get a taste of iconic Chanel fragrances without investing in large bottles.  The 2010 Fragrance Wardrobe can be purchased on Chanel.com.

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September 7, 2010

Chanel Announces New Coco Mademoiselle Advertising Campaign

Chanel seems to be on a fragrance ad campaign roll. It seems like every time I post about a new ad campaign, another one is right behind it. Soon after the Scorsese film ad for Bleu de Chanel, Chanel has announced that it’s filming a new Coco Mademoiselle ad campaign featuring the fragrances face, Keira Knightley. Directed by Joe Wright, Chanel continues the tradition of pairing it’s actresses who star in their campaigns with directors the actresses have worked with.*  Knightley and Wright worked together on the 2005 film Pride & Prejudice.

Take a look at the behind the scenes images below.

The old Coco Mademoiselle ad featuring Keira Knightley.

*Previous actress/director pairings:
Chanel No. 5:
Nicole Kidman & Baz Luhrmann in Moulin Rouge
Audrey Tautou & Jean-Pierre Jeunet in Amélie.

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Hint Magazine Interview with Jacques Polge

Jacques Polge, the infamous “nose” behind over thirty Chanel fragrances, sat down to talk with the folks at Hint Magazine on the eve of the 20th Anniversary of Egoïste. The fragrance was revolutionary at the time of its release in 1990 because of its “gender-bending” scent and was accompanied by a dramatic and elegant film ad.

Read the interview re-printed from Hint Magazine below:

Q&A with Legendary Chanel Perfumer Jacques Polge
by Stéphane Gaboué

There has been, perhaps, no better launch of a men’s cologne than Chanel’s landmark Egoïste in 1990. Not only were its gender-bending scent and provocative name immediately, and forever, etched in our collective memory (particularly in France), but who could forget Jean Paul Goude’s gorgeously camp TV commercial, with its over-the-top Prokoviev soundtrack and hysterical women shouting from balconies? Citing the 17th-century French playwright Pierre Corneille, this is what they so plaintively, melodramatically cried out (translated): “Egoïste, where are you? Stop hiding, selfish man! Watch my ire! I will be implacable! O anger! O despair! You betrayed my love. Have I lived simply to know this infamy? Show yourself! Egoïste!”

As the fragrance marks its 20th anniversary this year, we wanted to know more about its genesis and its genius creator, Jacques Polge, Chanel’s legendary in-house perfumer—or “nose”—for 32 years…

A Chanel executive once told me that of all the fragrances you’ve created at Chanel, Egoïste is your favorite. Is that true?
Yes, it’s true, it’s my favorite. It was so new and singular—and still is.

How did the adventure start?
What happened was, I found an old formula by Ernest Beaux [creator of N°5] of a women’s fragrance called Bois des Iles, which is exclusively sold in Chanel stores. There was a high content of sandalwood in it. We were used to such scents as fougères in men’s fragrances, but sandalwood had never been used as the main note in a male perfume. Egoïste is built around that. There is also some ambrette seed in it.

What about the name? Egoïste, which means selfish in English, is perhaps not the easiest way to market a fragrance.
In our industry, we always use code names while working on fragrances. For example, I have a bottle here named Carla. It has nothing to do with Mrs. Sarkozy. It is a new variety of lavender. So at the time, in the eighties, I was working on a men’s fragrance that we called Black Wood. Chanel’s then-CEO had said that if we were to launch a men’s fragrance, we should also launch a menswear line. Ultimately, they dropped the menswear idea, so he decided to cancel the fragrance. But some of us really liked it, so we said, “We’re still going to launch it. Only, it will be exclusively available in our flagship stores.” We called it Bois Noir.

It still wasn’t called Egoïste?
No. But when you put fragrances in stores, there is always a fan base. And people loved Bois Noir. There really was a buzz around this perfume. So we decided to launch it for a wider audience. The marketing people said Bois Noir wasn’t a good name, so they chose Egoïste instead. There was this beautiful photography magazine called Egoïste, which was done by Nicole Wisniak. We called her and bought the rights to use the name for the fragrance.

Then there was the fabulous commercial…
Yes. Jean Paul Goude made this very strong commercial, which played a major role in the fragrance’s fame. Yet, despite all the exposure, the fragrance didn’t sell that well, especially in America. We had expected more success with it. So we launched Egoïste Platinum in 1994, which was a more classic scent, and it was a much bigger hit. But I am still very glad we did Egoïste. I think it’s important for a brand to have a fragrance that shakes things up. You know, the men’s market is very particular. I know we went far with Egoïste, but I like it. It was good for Chanel. Brands today maybe don’t have the courage that they used to.

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August 30, 2010

Behind the Scenes: BLEU DE CHANEL Advertising Film Directed By Scorsese

Last week Chanel released the advertising film for Bleu de Chanel directed by Martin Scorsese and starring Gaspard Ulliel. The behind the scenes videos below are an interesting glimpse into the making of the short film and you get to see the genius of Scorsese at work. Chanel has done it again with another great advertising film. I’m looking forward to the next one!

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July 30, 2010

Bleu de Chanel Fragrance for Men

Chanel is introducing a new fragrance for men this fall called Bleu, a scent created by Chanel’s “nose” Jacques Polge. Chanel describes the scent as:

The provocative fragrance opens with an intriguing wave of citrus fruits, mingled with the airy scent of a deep blue sea. Next, the zest of Grapefruit punctuates, followed by the tang of Peppermint, Pink Pepper and Nutmeg. Finally, in this initial impression, a touch of Ginger heightens the sharpness of the citrus.

As you may recall, earlier in the year we let you know that Martin Scorcese had directed an advertising film starring French actor Gaspard Ulliel – it was for this fragrance.  The advertising film Bleu de Chanel will be released later in August and Bleu will hit shelves this Fall.

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July 7, 2010

Chanel N˚5 Wins “Best Classic Fragrance”

Each year Allure Magazine hosts a Reader’s Choice Award and this year, Chanel N˚5 won Best Classic Fragrance. This should come as no surprise as Chanel N˚5 has been making waves since it debuted on May 5, 1921. Perhaps the most famous fragrance in the world, a bottle of Chanel N˚5 is sold every 55 seconds. (Stephen Brook, Guardian.co.uk).  No other perfume has gained the iconic status of Chanel N˚5 and it’s easy to see why it would win the Best Classic Fragrance award.

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Filed under: Chanel Fragrance — Tags: , , , , , — La Chanelphile @ 7:19 pm

April 12, 2010

Nylon TV – Factory Girl Visits the Chanel Perfume Lab

Coco Chanel is a fashion icon but what launched her into fashion cult status is the worldwide popularity of her signature scent, Chanel No.5.  The house of Chanel has released countless fragrances – one more compelling than the next.  I personally love Coco Mademoiselle, Allure, Chanel No.5 Sensual Elixir and my current favorite Beige.

Nylon TV‘s Factory Girl paid a visit to the famed Chanel Perfume Lab where “all the magic happens” to sit down and chat with famed “nose” (i.e., perfumer) Jacques Polge.  So jealous! I want her job! Watch the video below …

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February 18, 2010

Scorsese Directs Chanel’s Men’s Fragrance Ad Starring Gaspard Ulliel

Martin Scorses Directs Chanel Men's Fragrance Ad Starting Gaspard Ulliel

A month ago I reported that Martin Scorsese was spotted at Moto in Brooklyn shooting a new Chanel ad campaign. Word has just surfaced that the ad he was filming was for Chanel’s new men’s fragrance. The ad features French actor Gaspard Ulliel.

Andrea D’Avack, president of Chanel Fragrance and Beauté, stated that “The ads have been shot in New York, the city which is so inherently part of Martin Scorsese’s cinematographic vocabulary.” (WWD)

Chanel has a long history of working with acclaimed film directors from Baz Luhrmann (with muse Nicole Kidman) and Jean-Pierre Jeunet (with mus Audrey Tautou ), both for Chanel No.5 at different times.

Chanel works with movie directors because they bring depth, emotion and what we call in French ‘a supplement of soul,’ or an added dimension,” said D’Avack, pointing to films such as “Taxi Driver,” “Raging Bull,” and “Goodfellas” as examples of Scorsese’s vision. “In the case of Martin Scorsese, we knew we would definitely have a man’s world full of complexity that is also adrenaline-driven, and of course, amazing images. (WWD)

This is the first men’s ad of its kind that I will see and I’m looking forward to it!  I love Martin Scorsese and I think he’s a wonderful choice to film a men’s fragrance ad.  He’ll be able to capture the essence of “man” without coming off as to macho – can’t wait to see!

Info & Image

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October 20, 2009

Chanel N˚5 – The Biography

Chanel N˚5

Chanel N˚5

Today, the most iconic fragrance of all time, Chanel N˚5 is seeing the release of an “authorized biography” – Histoire du No.5 Chanel, Un Numéro Intemporel (in English, Story of Chanel No.5, A Timeless Number).  The bio is written in French, by François Ternon, and is releasing today in France, Belgium and Switzerland.  The book takes us through the development of Chanel N˚5, and includes a discussion of the scent’s 2 creators Gabrielle Bonheur “Coco” Chanel and Ernest Beaux.  The best part?  The house of Chanel supplied 32 illustrated pages – I wonder if they include some of Coco’s original sketches?  No word yet on if, and when, this will release stateside so for now, I guess I’ll have to learn French!

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