For the launch of #NOIRatBG, our very own Linda Fargo teamed up with her longtime friend and perfumer Kilian Hennessy to create a one-of-a-kind fragrance exclusively for Bergdorf Goodman. The result of this deeply personal journey through scent is “Do It For Love,” a captivating fragrance that contains the highest dose of vetyver essence ever reached in a perfume. Below, the dynamic duo discuss their relationship, how the collaboration came to life, and their favorite moments from the experience.
Shop Kilian’s “Do It For Love” fragrance now in the Noir shop on 2 and online at BG.com .
Bergdorf Goodman: Can you tell us the story of how you two met and how the relationship has evolved since?
Linda Fargo: Kilian and I recognized a kindred soul the first time we met. We went out for a proper decadent dinner of pink champagne and Dover sole at La Grenouille and quickly cut to the chase. We discovered that we were both intense about doing things to their fullest expression, and that we were both sensualists at heart. The delight of every sense mattered profoundly to both of us. I think we both knew we would be life long friends and partners of some sort or another from that point forward.
Kilian Hennessy: This collaboration is very personal to me as Bergdorf Goodman was the first retailer to sell my perfume collection over ten years ago. To be chosen by “BG” and, more specifically, to be selected by the discerning eye of Linda Fargo, is a landmark event for any brand. As a side story, the buyer at the time who fought to launch my brand was Elisabeth Jones-Hennessy. She became my wife a few years later.
BG: How did the idea for the exclusive Noir fragrance come about and what was the process of creating it?
LF: “Finding myself” as a fragrance has always eluded me. I had only ever loved bits and notes of various fragrances, but none of them were completely me. Opening Linda’s at Bergdorf’s was a catalyst. The shop was already a personal fantasy closet filled with all my favorite clothes and finds of the season, along with favorite playlists, favorite chocolate and tea etc, but the sense of a personal scent was missing. I couldn’t think of anyone that I would trust more to understand me than Kilian to work with to create an incredibly unique and personal, yet universal and beautiful fragrance for me.
Once we began, I finally understood what it meant to be ” an artist” with scent. Killian was masterful, and “painted” in layers of scent. I probably have over 50 testers still at home which he would send me, each one nuanced slightly differently. I will never forget this collaboration- it was a highlight in my life, and I will cherish what I learned about the creation of a fragrance and that those who create the signature scents we have come to love are creative geniuses.
KH: “Do It For Love” commemorates the opening of Linda’s at Bergdorf Goodman, a personally curated boutique within the legendary Fifth Avenue department store where Linda Fargo has shaped trends and tastes for over twenty years, and still today as Senior Vice President, Women’s Fashion Director and Store Presentation. Linda’s, located on the 4th floor, is the fashion doyenne’s “fantasy closet”—mixing re-editions of her wardrobe essentials, seasonal spot-on style must-haves and playful cocktail conversation pieces in an eclectic mix expressing her unique joie de vivre. “Do It For Love” will be a New York exclusive, available in Noir at Bergdorf Goodman and at KILIAN’s two boutiques on Washington Street downtown, and on Madison Avenue on the Upper East Side.
BG: Why did you decide to call the scent “Do It For Love?”
LF: We named it Do It For Love because its a raison d’etre that we both live by. Any great effort or union or creation can only come to life if it’s created with love and inspiration. Love is always the right reason to do anything…. well maybe except murder!
KH: The fragrance name, in fact, comes from a quote I spotted on the wall of Linda’s Manhattan office: “Do it for love. Impress yourself first. Create what hasn’t been done before.”
BG: How does this particular scent speak to the Noir woman?
LF: I think the fragrance is many things, just like Noir itself has many faces… it’s seductive, mysterious, powerful, sensuous, timeless, beautiful, potent… and …memorable….
BG: What were the best and most challenging aspects of creating this fragrance?
LF: The beginning! Where to start?! What was the lead note….? Which ingredient most spoke to me…? What mixture could stand the test of time, be universal? Could it speak equally to both men and women?
KH: By far the greatest challenge was to create a feminine vetiver scent! Vetyver fragrances are such a staple of the men’s fragrance industry that it WAS difficult to blend in a way that would feel feminine.