London Life Places

Mother’s Day and Perfume

March 31, 2014

Walking in Covent Garden on Saturday late afternoon, I was struck by the hoards of people around. Having studied there in the 1980’s I’m very familiar with the Piazza, the surrounding areas and the changing landscape in retail. I’ve seen shops come and go and the whole area transform many times over.

Having said that, I was taken aback by the appearance of Dior, Chanel and Burberry. These luxury brands have each opened a beauty store in the Piazza. I soon realised that due to the gorgeous weather and impending Mother’s Day (yesterday) Covent Garden was jampacked.

Regular readers will know this is not my usual kind of post, but I was intrigued by the addition of these luxury brands. Curious about the Mother’s Day decorations, it got me thinking about the importance of the shopping experience and the sheer influence of these brand’s marketing budgets and campaigns.

Not one for wearing perfume (slightly allergic to it) I’m fascinated what big business it is. In the US the fragrance industry is worth around $5.2 billion. No wonder every celebrity is jumping on the bandwagon.

Let’s see how the established brands like Dior and Chanel do their thing. They do it rather well!


Love this Dior Mother’s Day flowers decoration.


Dior’s J’adore bottle is timeless……

….so is this spectacular campaign with the gorgeous Charlize Theron. I don’t think I’ll ever tire of it! That dress!!!

This is a fun idea, showcasing their lipstick in a bag form. Of course, Dior bags are very sought after.

Detail of the bag above.

Chanel next door opened in May 2013 as a make-up pop-up. The store is designed to be fun, accessible and deliver a fully immersive experience. The idea was to introduce a non-intimidating retail experience, despite being a luxury brand. It’s meant to be playful, inspirational, combining the exclusivity and chic of the brand with a fun and informal atmosphere.

For Mother’s Day Chanel illuminated the iconic logo in a sequence of pinks and lavender.

Keira Knightley has once again been transformed into ‘Coco Mademoiselle’ for Chanel’s latest perfume advert. Since 2007 Keira has been starring as its iconic founder Coco Chanel, and her newest role is part of a series of mini films that see the mysterious Coco seduce and then mysteriously vanish from devastatingly good looking men.

Ironically, I saw Keira Knightley earlier on Saturday walking hand in hand in Dalston with her husband, looking relaxed and happy without a care in the world. She’s not very recognisable with shades on, really rather unassuming and does not seek attention. I like that about her.

flowers motherday
A bunch of flowers I bought on Saturday. Consider them for you!

Do you wear perfume or aftershave (for my male readers)? Which brand? Happy belated Mother’s Day for those of you in the UK. See you Thursday x

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  • Reply Igor March 31, 2014 at 1:12 pm

    Beautiful floral inspiration here! It’s funny that Mother’s Day is way later here in the German-speaking countries:-) Looking forward to seeing you very soon!!

    • Reply tina March 31, 2014 at 10:56 pm

      I know, never understood why it’s different in the UK:-) Yay! Looking forward to seeing you my dear!

  • Reply Louise - 30s Magazine March 31, 2014 at 8:30 pm

    This is a different blog post than what I expected 🙂 More like me..haha. Those roses are gorgeous, and well, yes I like the lipstick purse too. Like Igor said, mother’s day is in May in the Netherlands. I wonder why there are different dates…How was Berlin?

    • Reply tina March 31, 2014 at 10:59 pm

      Hahahahaha, I think I shocked myself here. Felt a little unsure of how to write it. Should have asked the guru, YOU!!! Hahahaha. You must have felt right at home reading it:-))

      They were silk but rather beautiful. The Lipstick purse is fun.
      I know, most European countries celebrate Mother’s Day in May. Now I’m intrigued why it’s March in the UK.
      Berlin was stunning x

  • Reply Catherine@farmhousehome April 1, 2014 at 1:40 am

    Hi Tina, those roses are STUNNING, you’ve captured them beautifully. Don’t they just take your breath away! Mother’s Day is in May here in the merry old land of oz so wasn’t expecting that. Isn’t the lipstick handbag clever, I like that Chanel have set up a fun non intimidating pop up store, I can sometimes feel intimidated by these luxury stores.

    For a while I didn’t wear any perfume as I’m an asthmatic and thought perfume may have been making it worse. But I love it so much I’m now wearing it again, just one or two sprays a day. At the moment I’m wearing Chloe L’Eau De Chloe which is nearly finished, hoping to pick up some new perfumes on the impending trip. xx

    • Reply tina April 1, 2014 at 7:42 am

      Thanks. They had 2 large columns filled with these roses. Yes, there’s something really luscious in the way the styled them. Really abundant and generous.

      Oh, somehow thought that you guys might have MD in March. Nope, it’ the UK being different again:-)

      I agree and i think that Chanel was right to choose Covent Garden for it. It’s young and sassy. Luxury brands like those can be intimidating, especially in the more expensive areas like in Bond Street and Sloane Street. However, Chanel have been working on this for many years. They have a surprisingly large young clientele.
      I also think that beauty is a good way for these brands to lure in new customers. Many women, whatever their age, use perfume, make-up or/and nail varnish.
      Did you know that a bottle of Chanel No 5 is sold every 30 seconds around the world? Fascinating, isn’t it?

      Glad you’re fine with wearing perfume as you love it. Chloe is another great brand! I’m sure you’ll be able to pick some up in Duty Free. Not long now! You getting excited? xx

  • Reply Mel April 1, 2014 at 10:11 am

    Oh I remember convent garden so well, I’d love to see how it has changed over the years. The visual merchandising is insane for luxury brands these days. I do wear perfume and enjoy wearing it, the kids love it too and always comment on it. In the summer I wear dolce & gabbana “rose the one” and in the winter dolce & gabbana “the one” in the day and sisley “soir de lune” in the the evening. M xx

    • Reply tina April 2, 2014 at 11:24 am

      Covent Garden has changed over the years but I enjoy all the changes. Things move on and go with the times.

      Wow, you take your perfumes seriously:-) a change for summer, winter, day and evening. Very sophisticated.
      How nice that your kids comment. My mother used to wear YSL Opium and I would run from her as it was soooo strong. X

      • Reply Mel April 7, 2014 at 7:06 am

        Oh I remember YSL Opium too – and wasn’t there another, Poison? So strong indeed.

        • Reply tina April 7, 2014 at 12:19 pm

          Gosh, now that you mention it…. not sure she wore ‘Poison’. but I remember the smell and packaging as if it were yesterday. It can still make me ‘gag’:-))

  • Reply Toni April 1, 2014 at 11:30 am

    What a wonderful post! Even though the beauty industry is such a big business, they really do nice things – especially in the visual merchandising sector. I love the handbag made of lipsticks.

    Many greetings from Berlin,

    • Reply tina April 2, 2014 at 11:32 am

      Thank you Toni. Yes, they do nice things and I find it’s one of the industries where advertising and visual merchandising is still so creative, due to the big budgets available.

      I have always LOVED the Chanel perfume ads. They are more like mini movies and as a designer I appreciate the beauty and craftmanship.

      The Lipstick bag is really effective.

      I have withdrawal symptoms from Berlin:-) Thank you for stopping by…

  • Reply Gerard @WalnutGrey April 1, 2014 at 12:58 pm

    Hey Tina. Have to say that I’m not a fan of any of those brands that you mentioned there or the perfume industry in general. Think it’s way overinflated.

    Do love the flowers that you bought on Saturday though 🙂


    • Reply tina April 2, 2014 at 11:34 am

      I believe that one hasn’t got to be a fan of ‘those brands’ to make some intelligent comments or share, for example, that you wear Monocle’s aftershave.
      Thanks x

  • Reply Doris April 2, 2014 at 2:15 pm

    That floral display of Diors is beautiful and I would have to agree that Charlize Theron in that dress is AMAZING. Although I do think that dedicated days like these can be a tad commercial, it is nice to appreciate the effort that these companies go to to display their products. I like that you’ve gone and changed things up with this post but still in “Tina” style. xD

    • Reply tina April 3, 2014 at 1:25 am

      Yes, I did really like that floral display.
      THAT dress and CT wearing it. perfect combo…

      I’m usually not one for commercial seasonal merchandising… i was looking at it purely from a decorative side and I agree, sometimes I am just in awe of what they’ll pull out to promote a product.

      An unusual post for me, I know, but somehow I was drawn to it:-) Thank you for recognising that it’s still ‘Tina’ style xx

  • Reply Holly April 4, 2014 at 7:08 pm

    Cool post Tina! Love to see brand campaigns, these are quite fun. Lipstick bag?! Love it. Also love your pic of the J’adore bottle … the flowers reflected in the top – brilliant!

    Surprised that I’m not really liking the Coco Madmoiselle/Keira mini films, since I quite like Chanel and Keira (cool that you saw her strolling about!). I find them a bit boring … or too elaborate for the message…or I don’t know. Not connecting with it at all.

    I’m quite serious about perfume and very loyal when I find the right one. For the last 5 years, I’ve been wearing The Beat by Burberry. Before that I was stuck on Amor Amor by Cacharel until a friend of mine started wearing it too!! Horror. I had to change immediately. I find scents a very personal thing. In between, I wore Omnia Crystalline by Bvugari and then L’eau d’Issey by Issey Miyake for a while. They were ok but they just never sat right. So glad I found The Beat. It’s perfect for me. I just dread the day they discontinue it.


    • Reply tina April 7, 2014 at 12:18 pm

      Thanks Holly!
      Ha. Took quite a few of those… to get it right:-)

      Actually, I’m not really that familiar with lots of perfume campaigns but the J’adore and Coco Madmoiselle/Keira mini films stick in my mind. To be honest, I didn’t even know it’s a series of mini films. All I knew was that ad where Keira did a photo shoot, got sort of amourous with the photographer and sneaked out to drive away on a motorbike. This one I posted is new, I think and I haven’t seen it yet!

      Whatever you’re wearing, it can’t be that strong because I’m very sensitive and can’t really smell it on you:-) ‘The Beat’ by Burberry… don’t know it.
      Maybe, just maybe you can have your own scent mixed in a place like Grasse, South of France. I agree it’s a very personal thing and wouldn’t it be great to have a ‘Holly scent’?just for you….

      Haha. Whenever I liked some make-up you can be sure it got discontinued at some stage… I hope they won’t discontinue ‘The Beat’ for a looong time.. xx

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