Though today it is renowned for its original, ingredient-driven scents, Creed first began life in 1760 as a tailor, outfitting London’s great and good – including King George III, who received a pair of scented leather gloves from the Mayfair company. And, even though its transformation into a Parisian perfume house in 1854 (a move that came at the request of Napoleon III and Empress Eugénie, who designated the business as an official supplier to the royal house) may appear like an incongruous move, the core principles that were developed during its time in the sartorial world – an awareness of detail; the use of only the finest materials available; and a certain tact when looking after a discerning clientele – created the foundations for The House of Creed to become a pioneer in producing artisanal fragrances.
Throughout the decades, Creed has formulated over 200 perfumes – bottled aromas that distill a sense of time and place, drawing upon the world’s finest ingredients, from Italian jasmine to rose from Morocco – all of which have been a result of the skill and knowledge passed down throughout seven generations of the Creed family. “Our creations are a journey through time, like a bridge between generations, because the past is the strength of our future,” says Erwin Creed, the son of Olivier, the seventh descendent of founder James Henry.
That passing of knowledge is evident in Creed’s labour-intensive production methods that are still used today, as each scent continues to be filtered, bottled and labelled, all by hand, in the company’s family-run Fontainebleau factory, just over an hour away from Paris; and the millésime quality – a wine term that roughly translates to ‘a great vintage’ – is still the standard on which its products are held to, whereby only premium ingredients that have a high concentration in natural oils (an element, it is said, that will allow the perfume to vary with every ‘vintage’) will be blended together.
For its most recent release, The House of Creed has crafted a Leather Explorer Collection, a seven-piece hand-crafted Italian-leather line (two trunks, three perfume sleeves and a pair of candle holders) whose rich, bold French navy aesthetics come courtesy of Olivier Creed, who, inspired by his father’s oceanic travels to destinations, such as Japan, in the early 20th century, references vintage trunks and vanity cases in his design.
The larger pieces in the range include a pair of trunks available in two sizes – the smaller carries two 100ml fragrances; the larger can hold two 250ml scents from the Heritage collection, and also comes with a leather atomiser – that make a striking use of monogrammed Creed leather, polished brass on the lock and feet, and a brass house plaque and beige suede in the interior.
For more pocket-friendly travel accessories, a trio of leather perfume sleeves can either hold 50ml, 75ml or 100ml bottles; and a set of candles (220g, 650g and 1,475g) not only arrive in a glass vessel (one of which is sheathed in a leather holder), but also showcase the subtlety of Birmanie Oud (a mix of a shrub called styrax; and tonka bean) and Vanisia (vanilla nectar and amber), a concoction that’s influenced by Creed’s exploration of the world in search of new scent profiles.
Offering further olfactory joy to the line is a quartet of new fragrance sets (3 x 10ml and 5 x 10ml), which spotlight Creed’s signature creations, such as Aventus (a complex mix of bergamot, patchouli and oakmoss) and the versatile Silver Mountain Water (musk, green tea, neroli).
Available worldwide, the new Leather Explorer Collection is the ideal companion to add a touch of decadence to your home this season or to stow away in your suitcase – whether you’ve got a long-weekend in the schedule or you’re off to more far-flung corners.
Leather Explorer Collection
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