As one of the longest-running brands, Louis Vuitton is the epitome of luxury fashion. With a monogram that is iconic and often repeated, it is easy to understand why Louis Vuitton is more than a luxury brand. It is a status symbol.
Louis Vuitton was born on August 4, 1821, in the village of Anchay in eastern France, where his family lived for more than 600 years. The sawmill bought by one of his ancestors, Pierre Vuitton, has sustained generations of descendants, so young Louis learned how to process wood from an early age. His mother died young when Louis was only ten years old. His father remarried, but as he disagreed with his stepmother, he was already thinking about leaving. At the age of 14, he went to Paris to study the craft with various masters. On a journey that lasted three years, he set off almost adventurously, crossing 292 miles on foot, doing all sorts of jobs along the way. The young craftsman found himself in the right place at the right time: French colonialism was in full swing, Paris was developing rapidly, the industrial revolution was beginning. The world in which he was born wore rich, luxurious clothes made of precious fabrics.
Ladies and gentlemen who wanted to travel had a problem packing precious things not to be destroyed during transport. Louis began to make coffins and suitcases from poplar wood, initially with the leading manufacturer of suitcases, M. Marechal. Still, he quickly stood out with his talent and began to receive personal orders. The list of happy clients also included influential people from high society, which raised his reputation. After only two years, Louis decided to open his workshop. He married the same year, and three years later, his son Georges was born. In 1853, Napoleon III’s wife, Empress Eugenia, chose him as her supplier. Little by little, not only suitcases for clothes were created, but also for jewelry, porcelain, cosmetics. Talented and eager for success, he repeatedly introduced innovations that made it more comfortable for ladies on their travels. Soon he began to cover the poplar cases with a gray waterproof cloth known as Trianon. The cases were equipped with partitions for hangers, jewelry, laundry, clothes, shoes, and the success of such models is evidenced by the fact that even today, something similar is in the regular offer.
In 1859, Louis moved with his family to Asnieres Sur Seine, a suburb of Paris. He moved a workshop, a studio, and a family home there. At this address, there is now a special orders studio, the Louis Vuitton Museum of Creation and the Travel Museum, and the whole street is called Rue Louis Vuitton.
The business expanded rapidly, but with popularity came the problem of copyright protection. Trianon cloth was quickly used by other manufacturers, which is why in 1876, he introduced the use of beige-burgundy striped material, which he replaced with Damier 12 years later. When the founder of the fashion empire, Louis Vuitton, died in 1892, Georges took over the company, continuing the brand’s tradition, growth, and development. Innovations continued in the years to come, and one of the novelties was a numbered lock with a key. As the business expanded, so did the number of plagiarists the company tried to deal with in court, but to no avail. As geometric patterns were easy to copy, in 1896, a world-recognizable monogram was designed. Although patented, LV is probably the most copied monogram ever. Today, imitations of their handbags are sold worldwide, and it is estimated that only 1% of the goods that can be seen on the streets are original. Most of the production takes place in seven factories in France, small haberdashery in a factory not far from Barcelona. While in America, products that are mostly made are the ones that Europe and the rest of the world rarely buys, such as wallets with compartments for as many as 20 credit cards. In this way, the company and production remain centralized and thus easier to control. The public is aware that unsold pieces are burned to keep the prices at a high level, a practice that many luxury brands follow.
The lifestyle that included luxury travel could be afforded mainly by the elite, who gladly used LV luxury leather goods. One of the most famous Louis Vuitton bags is the Speedy, launched in 1930. At the request of Audrey Hepburn, a mini-version was made, and it made this model famous. Another of the more popular LV bags is Alma, also one of the most sought after. Moreover, it is the only bag that, apart from her creations, was worn by the legendary Coco Chanel.
LVMH company was founded in 1987, and the brands are Moet et Chandon, Hennessy, and Louis Vuitton. Young designer Marc Jacobs became the creative director of the house in 1997. He was replaced in 2013 by Nicolas Ghesquiere.
Louis Vuitton began producing luxury toiletries in 1920, such as crystal perfume bottles called Editions d’Art. The first known fragrance of the house is Heures d’Absence, launched in 1927. Je Tu Il followed it in 1928, and then Reminiscences and Eau de Voiage in 1946. A new chapter in the history of perfume began in September 2016 when creating and later establishing creative studio the Les Fountains Parfumees in Grasse, was taken on by chief perfumer Jacques Cavallier.
Louis Vuitton is one of the few fashion brands that had not had its fragrances for a very long time. And as if they wanted to make up for a lost time, in 2016, the house launched not one but seven perfumes, each based on a different color. Designer Marc Newson has created a design for the bottles that emphasize absolute purity, with reduced lines and black letters on transparent glass with a discreetly engraved name – Louis Vuitton. The lid with the imprinted initials of LV in brass reminds of antique bottles, and the white and gold paper packaging is inspired by the first fragrance Je, Tu, Il from back in 1928.
“Fluidity, light, nature, modern and dedicated femininity” is how Cavallier described his inspiration. “The collection is a story about flowers because flowers are so delicate, intense, so powerful and beautiful – just like a woman,” said Jacques Cavallier. “My long-standing obsession is to put the beauty of fresh flowers in a bottle,” explained the famous perfumer.
Rose des Vents is a fragrance based entirely on roses. It includes three different types of roses: centifolia, Bulgarian, and Turkish.
The inspiration for Turbulences is the scent of tuberose and jasmine at dusk.
Dans la Peau contains jasmine and narcissus, but also pieces of natural leather from the Vuitton workshop. Muskiness is revealed in the perfume only after the beautiful green of the daffodil.
The Apogee contains several flowers, with a lily of the valley in the heart. “The best lily of the valley scent in the world is Diorissimo,” says Cavallier. “I tried to make such a fragrance whose freshness lasts on the skin. “The company describes him as “conscious immersion in nature”.
Contre Moi is a fragrance born from Cavallier’s obsession with vanilla. The fragrant composition also includes orange blossom, rose, magnolia, and aromatic herbs. This is the scent of calm water that becomes seductively bittersweet on the skin.
Matiere Noire explores the balance of patchouli and white flowers. The French name for “dark matter” is a fragrance of contrast that combines cyclamen, patchouli, and Laotian oud. This is the most unusual and most unisex fragrance, just as expected from Vuitton.
Mille Feux uses a mixture of Chinese osmanthus and leather. The intriguing combination of leather with raspberry makes this perfume exciting for fans of more wearable leather perfumes.
Cavallier used a process called CO2 extraction, developed initially to make decaffeinated coffee – now used to make perfect replicas of the natural scent of flowers such as Chinese jasmine and May rose from Grasse. Cavallier achieved his goal: the obtained floral notes entirely copied the fresh, dewy quality of the unharvested flower. Perfumers have used CO2 extraction for years, but this is the first time it has been used on Grasse flowers and only in these seven fragrances.
Ombre Nomade perfume Louis Vuitton for women and men was launched in 2018. The scent is spicy and smoky. It was announced as a projection of a journey into the heart of the desert. Although everything seems motionless, the desert comes to life and draws the traveler into a passionate odyssey. Designed for lovers of rare fragrant essences, Ombre Nomade concentrates the feeling of infinity in one of the most mystical ingredients in perfumery, oak wood. Rebellious material, intoxicatingly beautiful, Jacques Cavallier combines with benzoin and raspberry.
Louis Vuitton has a new laboratory in the heart of the perfume country: Les Fontaines Parfumees. The perfumery is also Cavallier’s creative studio. Equally impressive are the gardens surrounding the estate, where over 300 different species of trees, flowers, and plants grow on 9,900 square meters, including jasmine, tuberose, May rose, geranium, and lemon tree.
Last year, LV ranked first among the ten most luxurious brands globally, with a revenue of $ 47.2 billion. With a tradition of more than 180 years, the company says: the recipe for timeless success is a combination of quality, exclusivity, and innovation.
List of Louis Vuitton perfumes:
- Afternoon Swim (2019)
- Apogee (2016)
- Attrape-Reves (2018)
- Au Hasard (2018)
- Cactus Garden (2019)
- California Dream (2020)
- Coeur Battant (2019)
- Contre Moi (2016)
- Dans la Peau (2016)
- Eau de Voyage (1946)
- Heures d’Absence (1927)
- Heures d’Absence (2020)
- Je Tu II (1928)
- L’Immensite (2018)
- Le Jour se Leve (2018)
- Les Sables Roses (2019)
- Matiere Noire (2016)
- Mille Feux (2016)
- Niut de Feu (2020)
- Nouveau Monde (2018)
- Ombre Nomade (2018)
- Orage (2018)
- Reminiscences (1946)
- Rose des Vents (2016)
- Sun Song (2018)
- Sur la Route (1927)
- Sur la Route (2018)
- Turbulences (2016)