Features

Change of Image

November 7, 2005

Nino Cerruti�s first fragrance to enter the U.S. evokes the message that anything is possible as humanity enters the next era of history.

Change of Image

Nino Cerruti’s first fragrance to enter the U.S. evokes the message that anything is possible as humanity enters the next era of history.

Optimism, creativity, inspiration, vision and future. These five words, written in five languages, are handscripted around the bottom portion of the flacon for Nino Cerruti’s new men’s fragrance, Image, released by Elizabeth Arden’s European Designer Fragrances division. These words, written in white on frosted glass, are not merely for decoration. They convey a message Mr. Cerruti has for the world.

"In this moment, as the millennium changes, we are building a society with different values," he said. "People want to look at the future and smile and grab it. With this scent, I wanted to capture the feeling of this post-industrial society and define the attitude of this time."

The scent, like the words on its bottle, was crafted to convey Mr. Cerruti’s message. Delivering a luminous feeling, the hesperidic, green aromatic, ambery, woody fragrance is energetic, crisp and refined. "It’s alive and fresh," he said. "We wanted something that connects with optimism, positivity and happiness."Launched in Europe at the end of 1998, Cerruti Image made its U.S. debut in June, where it will be available only at Bloomingdale’s stores in the New York metropolitan area until fall. The launch punctuates Mr. Cerruti’s entry into New York City, where he recently opened a boutique on Madison Avenue, his first in the U.S. "New York is the capital of the world," Mr. Cerruti said of his decision to enter the U.S. via the Big Apple. "The scent is very urban, very modern. All the things that are New York."

Image is Mr. Cerruti’s second fragrance and his first to be launched in the U.S. His master brand 1881 was launched in Europe 10 years ago and, although it enjoyed tremendous success across the Atlantic, this fragrance, like many of the designer’s other creations, was not available in the U.S. market. With boutiques in Paris and Milan, Mr. Cerruti and his family have been well known in Europe since the first textile mills were established by the family in 1881. Today the family business is a $500 million fashion powerhouse with Mr. Cerruti, a man known for his ability as an entrepreneur and his flair for the avant-garde, at its heart. With Image, Mr. Cerruti is now trying to establish his reputation in the U.S.

A Toy to Play With
The scent’s glass flacon is composed of contradictory elements: its long and slender shape and rounded shoulders evoke a classic era, while the modern is served by its cap, a circle positioned atop a square with a wave implementing the spray mechanism. The cap symbolizes the harmonious geometrical association between the circle and square. Designed by Maticplast in Italy, the cap was inspired by an antique perfume bottle owned by Mr. Cerruti. "I wanted something linear and essential but also something the hand could play with," Mr. Cerruti said. The ice blue outer packaging was chosen because it confers a joyous feeling of lightness and a breeze of freshness. Like the bottle, the box has the five words handscripted around it in silver.

Next year, Elizabeth Arden plans to release a sister scent to Cerruti Image. The bottle for this scent will have the same concept of letters or words and a clean design but the angle will be changed for a more feminine appeal, according to Mr. Cerruti.

Image’s New York launch will be complemented by an ad campaign, focusing mainly on outdoor signage and regional magazine placement. Three spreads will play a part in telling Mr. Cerruti story: "Designs Your Dreams" creates the realization that anything is possible. "Look Up" depicts a moment in normal city life where the world suddenly looks different. "I’m Flying" visually depicts a man who seems to have taken off, capturing the joy of creation and developing fresh new ideas.

The fragrance is available in two EDP sizes, 1.7-oz. for $36 and 3.4-oz. for $48. Other items include a 3.4-oz. body refreshing spray ($30), an all over body gel and shampoo ($18) and deodorant stick ($12.50). A national rollout in September will follow the Bloomingdale’s debut.

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