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It is true that we cannot succeed everything, and with the launch of the new fragrance by Balenciaga – Flora Botanica – it is precisely the case. Basically we cannot understand why such a launch. Is Coty Inc, the owners of the Balenciaga fragrance license putting pressure on Balenciaga ? Or is it just “Ok, we got it wrong”.


As we can see the new “egerie” is Kristen Stewart. And here already troubles start. Why her? She is the typical “non-active” girl, sulky and without too much energy. Finally the perfect victim of vampires :-). I am a little hard here, sorry. But essentially she is a cliché and that is what I criticize the most Balenciaga’s choice. After a magnificent Charlotte Gainsbourg, completely out of the mainstreams, they just go 360 degrees on the cliché-girl.

The name now. FLORABOTANICA. Probably they tried to stick to a certain heritage and elegance brought by the very successful launch of Balenciaga Paris (simple beautiful). But here something does not sound correct. FLORABOTANICA in one word bring us into a conceptual vision of nature, which is also, somehow, represented by these beatnik decoration.

Of course when we think about these name, we also think about FLORA by Gucci. Which I find, by the way, much more chic and elegant than the Balenciaga.
Flora by Gucci

I also think about Aqua Allegoria FLORA Nimphea by Guerlain. More naturalist and perfumistic.

The flacon looks like a Pierre Cardin one from the 80’s. Frankly not well done.

In terms of colors, we can see there is a coherence with the preview of the winter 2012-13 fashion collection (which is also very 80’s).
Check it here:

Nicolas Guesquière cannot decide about everything. We can see there are limitations. I did not evaluate the scent but I look forward to. The official press release describes it as a contrasting fragrance. The inspiration behind Florabotanica is described by Balenciaga as “not just a pretty flower, but a pretty dangerous flower.”

According to the Artistic director himself: “Kristen represents perfectly the modernity style of our new fragrance thanks to her sensitiveness and her unique intelligence.


Balenciaga is looking for a young consumer (is this why the rose color?).

Olivier Polges and Jean-Christophe Hérault, working for IFF, created the fragrance. Notes includes Mint, Rose, Carnation, Caladium leaf, Vetiver and Amber.

The launch will take place in September and 3 different flacon formats were created: 30, 50 and 100ml Eau de Parfum.

The campaign images were taken by top photographer Steven Meisel and feature Kristen wearing a dress from the Balenciaga SS08 collection and staring straight at the camera.

So sometimes not all creations are magically brilliant.



Info sourced on the official Brand press release. All images are copyrighted with no reproduction rights available.