One of the most historically meaningful trends to emerge this fall of 2012 has been a revivalist interest in the centuries-old craftsmanship of leather gloves. It has translated in perfumery into fragrances inspired by the scent of leather gloves but also into the release of perfumed leather gloves and finally into fragrance advertising tapping into the visual semiotics of an object of luxury which is all the more alluring because it is less commonly worn today than in the past, except if you think of Karl Lagerfeld who has made it part of his black dandy uniform...
In France, the association of glove-making and perfumery has been institutionally inscribed in its history for some 700 years, since 1190, then reactivated in May of 1656 until the period of the French Revolution, in 1791. After that, the two trades can become distinct.
In 2011-2012, we see a trend emerge of leather perfumes for women offering sweet interpretations of an animalistic accord. More precisely still, we see the thematic of the leather glove reappear in perfumes.
Maître Gantier et Parfumeur, named after the ancestral French corporation, release Cuir Fétiche in 2011. In 2012, L'Artisan Parfumeur who hitherto were not interested in perfumed leather gloves, offer leather gloves scented with Mûre et Musc Extrême in their Grasse collection. It is also the year when Volutes by Diptyque is inspired by the theme of leather gloves elegantly wafting on a transatlantic bound for the Far East. This fall,Thierry Mugler, make reference to this ancient sartorial habit with Les Parfums de Cuir.
In a more indirect way, Jessica Chastain dips her arms into purple paint for the advertising campaign for Manifesto by Yves Saint Laurent to mimic opera gloves.
Today, Chanel announced that they acquired the French glove-making company Causse est.1892 according to WWD. Cuir Fétiche, as it turns out, was inspired by the scent of their workshops in Millau. It is all coming full circle.