Perfume Anorak catches up with Régine Droin and Cérine Vasseur, founders of the Evody brand
This month we caught up with French mother and daughter duo Régine Droin and Cérine Vasseur, founders of the Evody brand. We talked to them about working together, the changing fragrance landscape and their earliest fragrance memories…..
PA: The two of you are very close – what is it like to work as a mother/daughter team? What are your individual strengths and why do you think it works so well?
Cérine: We are indeed very close. In fact, most of the time, we don’t actually feel like we are working when we are together! When we are chatting about the brand, projects and creation it just feels very normal. That said, we did decide to define specific tasks for one another. I’m more on the creative side in terms of look and design, and Mum is more about business management. When it comes to the fragrances though, it is always the two of us that are involved.
Régine: Our duo works because we have frank and constructive lines of communication. We are always looking in the same direction.
PA: We understand that that each of the fragrances in the range tells a very personal story. Could you tell us which one is most special to you?
Cérine: The most special perfume for me is Cuir Blanc, a fragrance created when I was pregnant with my first child. It is a very unusual fragrance for a pregnant woman, with notes of violet leaves, iris, musk and leather, and in fact many men also wear it. It gives me so much pleasure – it’s very sensual and I find it extremely refined and addictive.
Régine: For me, the perfume Note de Luxe is really special. It’s a formula I wrote many years ago now. I think for me it marks the beginning of this passion I have for perfume. It’s a real reflection of me, I feel complete when I wear it.
PA: You are repackaging your whole range – what made you decide to do this and how difficult was it to decide on the new look?
Cérine: We had started to feel that the brand didn’t look like us anymore in terms of image. We created the brand at a time when niche perfumery was not at all like it is today. It was the right time to make this change. What was difficult was to change the packaging while remaining loyal to our brand values: elegance, refinement and quality.
We believe that the change has been successful because the new packing has had such a good reception…..beyond our wildest expectations in fact. We feel we have achieved modernity and luxury, while remaining accessible. We do not want our perfumes to be elitist. We like the idea that everyone can wear them. Quality fragrances should not only be accessible to connoisseurs.
PA: Where do you see the brand going from here? More fragrances, body products?
Cérine and Régine: We are thinking about that……. We have many future fragrances in mind. But maybe new products such as candles, travel sprays etc would be an option too.
PA: If you hadn’t created Evody, what do you think you would have done?
Régine: I certainly would have continued my work in training. The idea of transmitting this passion for fragrance to a new generation, I’ve always loved it.
Cérine: I think I would have looked for a job with a creative element. I worked in fashion before getting into perfume. I could see myself creating a line of accessories: bags, shoes … my other addictions!
PA: You both live in Paris – where else in the world would you like to live?
Régine: I would definitely choose Italy. I like the sunny, upbeat feel of this country: the people, cuisine … not to mention the charm of its architecture. I have an unconditional love for this country!
Cérine: I think I need cities that move and offer changes of scenery! 24 hour cities like New York and London really appeal to me. I could be in perpetual motion for six months of the year and the rest of the year a country like Thailand would suit me perfectly! The calm, the smells, the food ….
PA: What are your passions beyond the world of fragrance?
Cérine: I love street art. It’s an art that is accessible to all and is often much deeper than it seems. Some artists are able to really communicate a message through this kind of art and I really recognise myself in some of the works I look at. I am also a fan of cooking, I love to test recipes and share them with friends.
Régine: I love travelling. Exploring the surprising unexpected side of a place, discovering different cultures. I also need to escape from Paris and I go to the countryside to rediscover nature. There, I play golf, I read …
PA: What are your thoughts about the development of the niche fragrance market?
Cérine and Régine: The perfume market has changed so much in recent times and I think there is great passion for niche fragrances. In fact I think there is a return to real values in general and scent is among them. Natural raw materials have never been so much under threat (which is a great problem), but never so much appreciated at the same time.
AB: Do you wear different fragrances every day or are you loyal to one particular fragrance?
Cérine: It depends completely. There are times when I change frequently and others where I’m very loyal, it depends on how I am feeling. I don’t restrict myself in any way, after all perfume is pleasure!
Régine: I do not change everyday. There is always one that I prefer but I also have one or two others that I select depending on my mood.
PA: What is your earliest fragrance memory?
Régine: Madame Rochas was my mother’s perfume. It was just perfect for her, loyal to her elegance and feminity. I was 12 years old and I can still recall it.
Cérine: When I was little it was Tartine et Chocolat, I was selling it to clients of my mum’s perfumery! And much later, I had a crush on Ambre Sultan from Serge Lutens, a revelation.
To find out more about Evody visit their website.