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The House Of Creed’S 250-Year History: A Mere Marketing Ploy?

Posted by: Mia Hudson, on: Thursday, 21 April 2016

Erwin Creed for the House of Creed
Erwin Creed for the House of Creed


The House of Creed accordingly started in 1760 as a London tailoring establishment. Based on what most people know, Creed fragrances have been worn by the likes of Queen Victoria, Frank Sinatra, Michael Jackson, Elvis Presley, Jackie Kennedy, David Beckham, and recently by Michelle Obama, and Laura Bush to name a few.


But are we to believe everything that Creed says, when we cannot see actual proof of their claims? In a forum in Basenotes.net, participants were made to answer, “Where are all the vintage Creed bottles?” Interestingly, forum participants came up with various answers.


One Captcrunch said that despite having plenty of claims as to Creed’s history, “I have yet to see more than one vintage bottle.” Furthermore, he mentioned that the closest thing that he could find during his search was an image of a bottle of Olivier Edc. “But that bottle I think only dates back to the early 70s.”


It could be remembered that based on its history, Creed became widely known for its fragrances only in the 1960s. The company started when James Henry Creed in 1760 founded the House of Creed in London as a tailoring company. Its first royal commission was from King George III, where a rich mix of mandarin, ambergris, and sandalwood was made into a scent called Royal English Leather. This commission came after the King became enamoured with a pair of Creed scented gloves.


the_good_life, also in the same Basenotes thread, added that he’s pretty sure “they do not exist.” He keenly observed that “none of its Royal Warrants or adverts or mentions on the press” said anything about Creed. “If they did make perfumes in the pre-Olivier era (referring to 6th generation Olivier Creed), for which there is not one piece of evidence outside Creed’s own PR, they kept it a well-guarded secret,” he further said. “Perhaps the perfumes were so awful they were too embarrassed ever to mention them.”


According to Creed history, the company transferred to Paris in 1854 at the request of Empress Eugenie of France. Creed made a fragrance called Jasmin Imperatrice for the Empress, a fragrance that’s still available these days. Then, in 1885, Creed became the official supplier of fragrances for the British royal court. Creed created Fleurs de Bulgarie for Queen Victoria. The following year, Spain’s Queen Maria Cristina named Creed as well as her supplier by royal order.


So, where really are these vintage bottles? kbe said that Creed “paid handsomely for collection of their old bottles to be melted and used to aid the war effort against the rebelling American colonies,” which could possibly explain why there are no vintage bottles in circulation.


On the other hand, Francesco said that he visited The Calè shop located in Milano. The shop is the Italian distributor for Creed. According to him, “I saw his private collection (of the owner).” The owner has a lot of “vintage bottle, strange bottle (250 ml), after shave bal (white liquid) of Orange spice, a black matte bottle splash (120 ml) of Royal English Leather, and the vintage white box with two red crowns printed on.”


Creed After-Shave Lotion circa 1970?
The Oldest Creed Bottle Found Online, Possibly Circa 1970


Creed is known for discontinuing its fragrances and has even dedicated a page in its website for “Vaulted Scents.”


Despite everything, whether the history of Creed dates back to the olden days or it is just their marketing ploy, it works really well. The famous and the rich, including the likes of Prince Charles and Hugh Grant, share a love for Creed fragrances. What could be the reason for this?


It could be because they wanted to be different from the rest, especially since it has been rumoured that there is a waiting list of individuals who come to the House of Creed to have a formula tailor-made for them.


Another reason would be the fact that Creed perfumes only use natural ingredients that are sourced from all over the world. These natural materials are very expensive and Olivier Creed, the sixth-generation perfumier at this prestigious fragrance house, would not sacrifice the quality of his fragrances over creating low-quality and mass produced perfumes with synthetic ingredients. This is not being elitist; rather, this is sticking to the legacy of Creed fragrances: relying on an ancient infusion technique that captures the rare and raw materials of each perfume, thus creating unrivalled scents that are both commissioned and worn by the history’s greatest names.


Author: Mia Hudson

Graduated in late 2003 from School of Computer Science in RMIT University majoring in software engineering. Employed by Coles Group developing Coles Online until it was taken over by Wesfarmers in 2007. Co-Founder of FeelingSexy.com.au and Lead programmer since 2006.

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