Diana Vreeland was an extraordinary legend in her time. She was a Fashion Editor for Harper’s Bazaar for 26 years and Editor-in-Chief for Vogue for nine years, revolutionizing fashion and had a reputation for transforming everything she touched. She also spent sixteen years at the Costume Institute at the MET, creating a juncture between fashion and art. She literally changed the rules in fashion, thus changing the world forever.
Her Grandson, Alexander Vreeland has an extensive background in marketing, communications and had worked for such names as Ralph Lauren, Giorgio Armani and Calvin Klein. After taking over Diana’s estate, he got books about her contributions and achievements published yearly. His wife also made a documentary- ‘The Eye Has to Travel,’ which helped create a buzz on her life and legacy. This helped inspire Alexander to want to create something under her name. He thought that with her story, fragrances would be the most appropriate.
They started working with IFF (International Flavors and Fragrances) and brought aboard their best perfumers to create exclusive scents that would pay homage to Diana. The brand worked with Fabien Baron to create an iconic bottle from the 1920s and recreate it in numerous colors. The tall cap design is in reference to Mrs. Vreeland’s exaggerated proportions. The dainty tassle has a romantic twist. The color palette that was chosen reflects on her passion for combining colors. Lastly, the name of the fragrances are actual quotes from her, because as Alexander adds, “she loved words, she made up words, she used words interestingly.”
Alexander launched Diana Vreeland Parfums in August 2014 in New York City, with hopes of it turning into an American luxury brand. They launched with five fragrances and related products and sold them in the finest U.S. and European retail stores. This year, they plan to launch three additional fragrances, as well as home products.
The fragrances are:
Perfectly Marvelous– Inspired by Mrs. Vreeland’s love of red. She had a living room, that was nicknamed the “Garden in Hell” because of all the crazy reds and prints. It features scents of jasmine, cashmere and musk. Very sexy and more of a nighttime fragrance. Nice on men and women.
Extravagance Russe– Inspired by her love of Orientalism. She was obsessed with Russia and in fact, did two costume exhibits at the MET on Russia. The story goes that during her first trip, she brought along Jackie Kennedy, because Russia wouldn’t allow her to borrow any clothes or artifacts. So they went, negotiated and got whatever they wanted. She also loved the Ballet Russe and the extravagance of the costumes and Nijinsky. The scents feature amber and vanilla bourbon.
Absolutely Vital– Inspired by her love of India. It features the scent of Indian Sandalwood, Turkish Rose and Egyptian jasmine. She used to dab Indian Sandalwood behind her ears every day before she would leave the house. This is also a fragrance that is great for men and women. It is great alone or to mix with other fragrances.
Outrageously Vibrant– Created by Carlos Benaim and is the fruitiest of the fragrances and features the scents of cassis, rose and patchouli.
Simply Divine– Inspired by her love of romance. It has the scent of tuberose and nutmeg and is very calming and fresh. This is also my favorite fragrance of the bunch so far.
Smashingly Brilliant– Inspired by her love for Capri. It’s fresh and zesty scents include citrus of Calabrian bergamot and lemon oil. Long-lasting fragrance. Great for men and women.
As Alexander concludes,”what is wonderful about fragrances is that you could keep changing them…I think that each fragrance has a story and you have relationships and you remember somebody by their smell and you remember yourself, by the smell you had with that person. It’s a very personal, intimate relationship that’s involved with fragrances.”
I had the wonderful opportunity to visit with Alexander for the launch of the parfumes at Neiman Marcus at the Galleria. The quotes are taken directly from Alexander. I’d love to personally thank the Diana Vreeland PR team, Sarah and the Neiman Marcus PR team for allowing me this opportunity.