Sophie Labbé spent her childhood between Paris and the Charente-Maritime area of France, encountering contrasting smells: the odours of a capital city, against the scents of the countryside, living to the rhythm of grape-picking and harvesting, swept with a salty breeze…
She studied at IPSICA, Paris’s perfumery school, and at the Givaudan Perfumery School in Geneva for six months. In 1992 she joined IFF as a junior perfumer, where Sophie has worked on so many famous fragrances (many of which you’re bound to have owned and adored). Most recently, she’s noted for her Signorina creations for Italian house Salvatore Ferragamo, and we caught up with her to find out about the inspirations behind the latest in the lineup, Signorina Ribelle.
Psst! And you can WIN a trio of Signorina fragrances if you enter our prize draw, HERE!
What was your inspiration behind the new Salvatore Ferragamo Signorina Ribelle fragrance?
Sophie Labbé: For this new perfume everything started from the idea of this duality between an addictive Italian ingredient and a daring way of life. I must say for each Signorina you have an interesting combination of an iconic flower in perfumery with a twist of a hint of something addictive, and very Italian.
So, for this Signorina Ribelle I wanted to work with an addictive Italian heritage and a new iconic flower, the iconic flower is a specific ylang ylang heart that has been crafted especially for Ferragamo, with a delicious Italian gelato accord. Ribelle has an adventurous heart, addictive and exotic flowers that leads on to an addictive base with the delicious gelato accord and a hint of coconut milk.
How did you work with Ferragamo to create the scent? What was your working process like?
The creative process for this scent, I wanted to have an iconic flower but in a modern way. For instance, if you think of the first Signorina eau de parfum it was a combination between jasmine and panna cotta, for Misteriosa it’s orange blossom and blackberry, so for Ribelle I really wanted a new iconic flower.
The ylang ylang flower is a traditional flower in perfumery but here we developed an exclusive heart, that makes it very modern. This heart of ylang ylang, developed for Ribelle, emphasizes the creamy and solar facets.
I wanted to signify the adventurous personality of this Signorina so I paired it with two other flowers. You have Jasmine Sambac from India, fearless, feminine and voluptuous, and then you have the Madagascan ylang ylang – a unique fractionization for Ferragamo – which is solar and sweet. Then frangipani flower; very exotic, solar and almond-like.
I represented the Signorina girl, who loves being with her friends, within a sisterhood, with these three flowers. It also represents the multicultural aspect of this perfume, with each of them coming from different parts of the globe.
For the top notes, it’s a luminous expression of freedom with the juiciness of the mandarin, the fieriness of the pink pepper – and the mouthwatering feeling of the pear, that is like a stolen kiss. And in the base, I used the vanilla gelato accord, which is my tribute to her Italian heritage.
You know the Signorina Family so well, what empitomises the Signorina girl to you?
For me the Signorina world is an endless source of inspiration and creativity. Every new launch is the opportunity to tell another part of her story, another facet of her personality, the DNA of Signorina is built around this relationship between an iconic flower and an addictive Italian ingredient. For me the Signorina girl is always chic and cheeky. The addictive note always adds a cheeky twist in the fragrances. I would say that Ribelle is very unique, she loves to be with her girlfriends, she’s adventurous and loves to be within a kind of sisterhood, which is very true to the girls of nowadays…
We were thrilled to include a sample of Signorina Ribelle in our fashion-forward #FROW Discovery Box so you can try it for yourself at home. One of thirteen incredible fragrances, the box is yours for just £19 (£15 for VIP Club Members).
Salvatore Ferragamo Signorina Ribelle £50 for 30ml eau de parfum
Try it at thefragranceshop.com