On Redchurch St, in Shoreditch, opposite the back entrance to Loungelover, there is a new shop. The frames are painted black and the window is bare apart from a blue and red target. Inside, your eye is immediately drawn to the large poster of a sultry looking model, with the words “Be a slut. Or just smell like one”.
Welcome to Etat Libre d’Orange: the free state of Orange. This Parisian perfume house has just launched its first shop in the UK, having been set up in Paris in 2006. The company has created a range of 27 perfumes, each one created by master noses, to produce interesting and unique scents. These are smells for individuals, for people outside of the mainstream; who don’t want to wear Chanel or Dior anymore. The bold marketing and controversial perfume names reflect this. It takes a certain type of person to wear “Don’t get me wrong, baby I don’t swallow” or “Magnificent Secretions”.
The interior of the shop was designed by Shed (Meat Mission and Meat Liquor), and it captures the spirit of the brand beautifully. The sales floor itself is clean and clinical with its plain white tiled floor and walls; with the perfumes arranged around the edge of the room on chemistry lab stands. But the smutty theme of some of the perfumes twists the lab look into more of a naughty toilet, with its clear plastic boxes filled with sex paraphernalia including a gimp mask, condoms and business cards made of prostitutes’ calling cards. Given they’re launching Fin du Mond (the End of the World) in October, it will be interesting to see how they convert the look of the shop into a somewhat eerier space.
This is an exciting brand; it’s racy and smutty, but forthright in its exploration of how scents influence our mood and sexual desire. Sometimes you may want to smell like Putain des Palaces (Hotel Slut) but on other days, you may just want to smell Like This, the scent co-created by Tilda Swinton.
Pop across the road to Loungelover afterwards and you can get 10% off cocktails inspired by Fils de Dieu and Eau de Protection – both Etat Libre d’Orange scents. Or try the cocktails first and get 10% off the perfumes that inspired them.
Monday – Saturday 12-7pm; Sunday 12-6pm
First Thursdays of each month 12-8pm
Or if you want to know more about Shed Design click on here