Frgragrance moves us to feel passionately – we adore a fragrant love story and featured several scented parnerships – couples working alongside each other in the fragrance industry – in the latest issue of our magazine, The Scented Letter. But one of our favourite perfume power-couples has to be Sylvie and Christophe from Atelier Cologne. What better time to get together with them to find out more about that passion for perfume (and beyond!) that continues to unite them…
How did each of you first fall in love with fragrance?
Sylvie – Christophe and I have only worn ‘Colognes’ since our childhood. We love citrusy scents because they are full of life and vitality. In the past, I found myself in the permanent search for different types of cologne, ones that would have different personalities and that would last on the skin… It was an impossible search!
By definition, Colognes are built around citruses and because they are so fresh and volatile, they do not last on the skin. Together, Christophe and I created a new olfactive family ‘Cologne Absolue’ to meet this specific need, blending citruses with the most precious raw materials for lasting power.
When you first met, did you notice how the other person smelled? Is there a scent that has become synonymous for you when thinking of them?
Sylvie: When I discovered the Cologne by Thierry Mugler for the first time, I felt it was a different take on the classic recipe. I loved the hint of woody notes and the blend of comforting musks with citruses. And believe it or not, it was the perfume Christophe was also wearing when we first met (and fell in love…)! Now, we always say that we do not believe in coincidence…
When Atelier Cologne was born a few years later and we created Orange Sanguine together, we truly gave birth to our dream scent: an elegant and full of life perfume that makes you smile and lasts all day!!
Were you both already scent obsessed, or did one of you ignite the passion for perfume within the other?
Christophe: Since I was a kid, I developed a natural curiosity for discovering which perfume someone is wearing. Aged 20 years old, before I started to work in the perfume world, I recall meeting people for the first time and could very often guess which perfume they were wearing. Many times this led to interesting discussions as through their perfume choice, I felt I knew much more about this person. In our mind, perfume is so connected to your personality – why it’s so important to me in life, why you can wear different perfumes depending on which facet of your personality you want to show.
Sylvie: I spent 8 years at Hermès Parfums after graduating and remember spending time with Bernard Bourgeois, the head of the perfume laboratory at that time and the head of training, Rosanna Rubino to learn about the beauty of ingredients and art of perfumery. There, I learnt to live and breathe the products, how to use the best raw materials and how something that doesn’t really show on the outside makes all the difference on the inside. When creating our own fragrances, we aim to use the most beautiful ingredients and raw materials to be as unique as possible!
Do you ever severely disagree on how things should smell?
Both: We make every decision when we are both convinced that it is the right one. As a result, we only launch a new fragrance when we both agree that this is the right creation, even if we might have different opinions from time to time.
What’s the working dynamic between you as a couple, and does it ever become difficult to split work and home life?
Both: We fall in love while working together…we share the same work ethics and core values, although we have very different personalities. We complete each other in every aspect of our life, whether working or living together.
Do you ever buy each other fragrance as a gift? If so, what was the last one you purchased / were given?
Sylvie: I don’t buy fragrances for Christophe but I’m always working on many creations at the same time and I like to surprise him and make him discover them ‘avant première’. He wears them day and night and then we decide on the final creation together!
Written by Suzy Nightingle