Post by Ainslie Walker
Hi Fragrant Friends!
I’m in Italy for Pitti Fragranze 2016 and today you can share with me:
An Aperol spritz in Florence with Linda Pilkington
*And a prosecco ‘roadie’ if I’m honest…
A Florence virgin, I arrived from Australia just 30 minutes before the first of many exciting interviews I had prearranged before departing. By the time the curtains opened for Pitti Fragrance I already had met with three fascinating folk from the world of fragrance. Nothing like hitting the ground running…and run I did!!
Linda Pilkington of British brand, Ormonde Jayne and I met in the garden in her quaint hotel, Lungarno Vespucci 50 on the bank of the Arno River nearest to Ponte Amerigo Vespucci, Firenze.
Ormond Jayne at Pitti in Florence
An Aperol spritz with Linda Pilington
With a fascination for scent and an entrepreneurial mindset from a young age, it is not surprising Ormonde Jayne has evolved into a successful, luxury cult brand.
How the brand evolved….
Initially named by her husband after the street she was living on in London, Ormonde Terrace, combined with her middle name, the brand began a rapid evolution. Winning Top Draw for best designs for handmade candles, room sprays and bath oils meant Ormonde Jayne was noticed and picked up by department stores Harrods and Liberty soon after launching.
Soon after, Linda began work on a stand-alone boutique on London’s Old Bond Street with the help of Chanel’s merchandising team. Linda had previously created for Chanel’s fine jewelry an in-house scented candle, that she still supplies.
Before doors opened on day 1, the editor for the Evening Standard had already knocked on the door and by day 2 there was a buzz – a queue forming before second day of trade. This was November 2001.
Linda bashfully describes her successes as ‘happenstance,’ however it’s clear she has put in plenty of hard work and loads of travel too!
Linda’s favorite fragrances…
Linda and her sister were “the best smelling teenagers of their small village near Manchester, England.” Her sister owned a bottle of Dior’s Eau Sauvage and Linda had Dior’s Diorella. The pair used to layer the duo and the town folk used to all say “those girls smell amazing!”
Her all time favorite, for its uniqueness is Feminite du Bois Shiseido / Serge Lutens. She has also worn Givenchy’s Pour Femme (Eau de Givenchy??), Van Cleef & Arpel’s First and Chanel’s Cristalle – In fact Linda told me Ormonde Jayne’s “Tiare is a little nod to Chanel’s Cristalle”
Linda’s creative process…
Linda’s innovation has been on finding unusual ingredients, not widely used at the time, such as hemlock, oud and champacca – and daring to use them first. “Champacca (2002) came out almost 10 years before Tom Fords in 2009” she explains
Currently the company is repackaging to linen covered boxes. Each country can choose a pantone color, which will then be unique to them. For example purple is already exclusive to Russia. A nice touch.
My personal favorite is Ormonde woman – full of mesmerizing hemlock. What’s yours?
I will be meeting Linda in her London boutique and Studio in a few weeks, so please let me know if you’ve any questions you’d like me to ask on your behalf!