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Master Perfumer: Tom Ford

Posted by: Shopgirl, on: Wednesday, 10 September 2014


Thomas Carlyle Ford, also known as Tom Ford, is a fashion designer from the US and also a filmmaker. He studied interior design at the New Parsons School. Afterwards, he spent one year working abroad as an intern for famous fashion house Chloé to help him get acquainted and get a feel of the fashion business. He also worked under the tutelage of renowned designer Cynthia Hardwick, and then at Perry Ellis, although his sights were really set in Europe.


The Start and Rise of His Career

In the early 1990s, Tom Ford was obtained by the highly prestigious Gucci as a designer, and was initially assigned to the women’s ready-to-wear section. With his many successes, after some time, he was promoted to Creative Director.


At the time, there were speculations of Gucci being nearly bankrupt before Tom came in, and he seemed to be the unsung hero, with his provocative, posh designs that have been coined to “turn louche sexuality into high fashion”.


During his stint with Gucci, the company acquired Yves Saint Laurent, and he took helm of that as well. Under Tom’s direction, YSL was able to release memorable campaigns for their fragrances M7 and Opium that were controversial and provocative, but very successful indeed. This was a great indicator of his promising and bright future ahead. Ultimately he has become one of the most distinguished and influential designers of that time. In 2004, he gave up his post due to a conflict in contract. But by that time, he was able to lead Gucci’s comeback with the company’s value doubled.


The Launch of Tom Ford

After his stint in Europe, he came back home to the US and established his own brand, Tom Ford, in 2005. The brand covered fashion, eyewear and other accessories, and became recognized for its provocative, sexually-charged ad campaigns. In that same year, Ford entered into a partnership with esteemed beauty company Estee Lauder, for the creation of his own line of cosmetics and scents.


In 2006, his very scent developed, the Black Orchid, was an instant hit. Following this success, more scents for men and women have been developed, which were all also highly successful. After which, Ford established a prestigious, upscale line called Tom Ford Private Blend, which released its first scent in 2007, called the Purple Patchouli.


Tom Ford’s continually rising career took a little side-track when he pursued his passion in film. In 2009, he directed his very first movie entitled “A Single Man,” which was critically acclaimed and a hit among movie buffs. The movie’s success was proven by its many nominations.


Tom Ford’s Fragrance Collection

Tom Ford currently has 48 perfumes in counting. This ranges from as early as 2006 and the most recent addition this 2014. Ford has also collaborated with other renowned master perfumers: David Apel, Yann Vasnier, Antoine Maisondieu, Rodrigo Flores-Roux, Clement Gavarry, Olivier Gillotin, Shyamala Maisondieu, Firmenich, Calice Becker, Yves Cassar, and Givaudan.


Tom Ford Signature Scents Most Recent Releases

He released his first major scent under his own brand name called Black Orchid, which was followed by Black Orchid Voile de Fleur, Tom Ford for Men, and Tom Ford for Men Extreme in 2007; White Patchouli in 2008, the Grey Vetiver in 2009, the Violet Blonde in 2011, Tom Ford Noir in 2012, Sahara Noir in 2013, and the most fresh in the line, the Velvet Orchid, released this 2014.


Tom Ford Private Blend

To target a more upscale, sophisticated market – this is the reason for the creation of Tom Ford Private Blend. It is composed of 12 luxury scents initially launched in 2007, with Purple Patchouli and Oud wood, only for an exclusive, limited distribution.


This was followed in 2008 with the release of Champaca Absolute, the Italian Cypress, Bois Marocain, and Arabian Wood in 2009; in 2010 with Azure Lime; 2011 with Lavender Palm, Jasmine Rouge and Santal Blush; and more recently, in 2013 with Private Blend London, Tobacco Oud and Oud Fleur. This year 2014, Tom Ford has launched Mandarino di Amalfi & Costa Azzurra and Patchouli Absolu.


Within his Private Blend brand he has joined the musk bandwagon by launching his own Private Blend White Musk collection with these four distinct scents: the Jasmine Musk, Urban Musk, White Suede and Musk Pure.


In 2012, he also released another line, the Private Blend Jardin Noir, with another set of four scents: the Café Rose, Lys Fume, Ombre de Hyacinth, and Jonquille de Nuit.


Finally, in 2013, he launched another luxury collection called the Atelier d’Orient, which was composed of these four scents: the Shanghai Lily, Fleur de Chine, Plum Japonais, and Rive d’Ambre.

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