"Quality is valued above extravagance. It's better to look decent than luxurious. "
The history of the French fashion house Nina Ricci begins back in 1932. Madame Nina Ricci, an Italian by birth, was born into the family of the best shoemaker in the city. A few years after Nina's birth, the family moved to a permanent place of residence closer to the fashion center - to the French Riviera, where, according to her father, it was possible to make useful acquaintances and acquire a huge number of new customers. Actually, that's exactly how it turned out, after a couple of years Nina Ricci's family had quite a decent income and did not need anything.
Nina Ricci inherited from her father not only a passion for beauty and luxury, but also the ability to work hard and painstakingly. At the age of 12, she began working part-time at a dressmaker, dreamed of becoming a famous milliner and opening her own atelier. How could young Nina then know that 37 years later her Model House would be located in the most prestigious area of Paris - on the Boulevard des Capucines, and her luxurious dresses would be honored to be worn by wealthy ladies of France.
Nina Ricci had a natural talent for creating real masterpieces from the simplest things. By adding decorative details, she turned a banal blouse or dress into a work of art. The use of satin ribbons, bows and buttons became Madame Ricci's signature style, and the success of each of her collections was based on extraordinary femininity, exceptional sophistication, completeness of the silhouette and the use of the best materials - silk, velvet, organza and lace.
Many girls from poor families in sewing workshops remained laborers for many years. But not Nina. She had already become a senior milliner by the age of 18, and at the age of 20 she had her own students and tailors, clothes were now sewn exclusively according to her sketches.
In 1904, she married Luigi Ricci, a gardener and flower seller. They had a son, Robert. But the marriage was not long. Soon Luigi dies and Nina Ricci is left alone with a young son in her arms. She would marry again only in 1916 to Gaston Morel. After the death of her first husband, Nina Ricci spent days and nights sketching and sewing with a needle. In 1908, she was accepted into the Rafen fashion house as a designer. Nina Ricci will work in the Rafen House for more than twenty years and even become a business partner. But the Rafen House by the early 1930s of the twentieth century went bankrupt and was closed. Nina Ricci, by that time, could no longer deny herself the means and was going to retire, because she was already 50 years old.
But in 1932, at the insistence of her son Robert, she opened her own Fashion House - Nina Ricci. Nina Ricci dresses were certainly elegant and feminine. They had a certain sophistication and romanticism. Initially, the Nina Ricci Fashion House was exclusively engaged in wedding dresses, and so far Nina Ricci wedding dresses are known all over the world.
After the Ricci House gained a reputation as the most elegant in Paris, the first line of fragrances, which was born thanks to her son, the couturier Robert Ricci, also comes out under the Nina Ricci brand. In 1948, a revolutionary fragrance was released, which translates to "The Spirit of the Times".
The fragrance L'Air Du Temps ("Spirit of the Times") - appeared three years after the end of the exhausting long-term war, symbolized love and joy, reminded of the carelessness and flirtatious femininity that was practically lost over the years. The design of the bottle was invented by Mark Lalique, a close friend of the Ricci family and the son of the famous jeweler Rene Lalique, who headed his glassblowing workshops after his father's death. The perfume is enclosed in a frosted glass cube bottle with slightly concave sides, and the lid is decorated with two kissing doves. The fragrance turned out to be innovative: perfumer Francis Fabron combined floral notes of rose, jasmine and violet with benzylsalicylate molecules, giving them a spicy trail.For 61 years, the creators managed to keep secret the exact perfume formula of these perfumes. Neither the proportions of the ingredients that make up the perfume, nor the requirements for them, are still unknown. The composition of the fragrance still includes the same notes, without any variations, and the components are selected manually.
The production of brooches for the release of a new perfume fragrance was a private practice of fashion houses in Paris. This was done by Christian Dior and YSL in order to attract more attention to the new fragrance and give solemnity to the moment of the start of sales. Initially, the brooches were a set to a perfume bottle, and later became independent collectible units due to their limited release.
Nina Ricci died when she was already well over eighty, in November 1970. Then the company was headed by her son Robert until his death in 1988, and after him the management passed into the hands of her son–in-law - Gilles Fouche (Fuchs). At the beginning of the XXI century, the designers of the Ricci House were Olivier Theiskens, and then Peter Copping. Today, the Nina Ricci brand is known not so much for its clothes or shoes as for its perfumes. The most popular fragrances from Nina Ricci are such fragrances as Love by Nina, Nina, Premier Jour, Love in Paris, Ricci Ricci, L'air du Temps, Nina L'Elixir. "Perfume is the soul of a woman," Robert Ricci said. L'air du Temps. The breath (smell) of time. A combination of rose, jasmine and gardenia scents. This legendary fragrance was created by Robert Ricci in 1948. According to legend – for his beloved. The fragrance was created in collaboration with perfumer Francis Fabren. The famous bottle with two kissing doves on the cap was made according to the sketches of Mark Lalik. The convex glass flowers on the bottle were created by the artist Christian Berard. L'air du Temps is still one of the five most famous perfumes in the world.
The first perfumes from the Ricci House appeared in 1946 - Coer Joie ("Joy for the heart") - Robert Ricci dedicated them to his mother.