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Cartier began as a family business in 1847 which focussed largely on jewellery until the third generation, founder Louis-François’s three grandsons, Pierre, Jacques and Louis; grew the business embracing Art Deco and the Jazz Age. As the 30s dawned, Jeanne Toussaint, who worked alongside the grandsons, drove the trio to take inspiration from the big cats at the zoo. Collections of panther and tiger jewellery were released, and a special commission piece for the Duchess of Windsor was created, a 3D panther brooch. Toussaint became known as ‘The Panther’, and the panther became synonymous with Cartier.
Must de Cartier, the debut scent from Cartier, was released in 1981 and was created to ‘adorn the skin like invisible and intimate precious gems’, a sentiment echoed in all of Cartier’s fragrances. The addition of Mathilde Laurent as Cartier’s in-house perfumer saw the brand release many successful perfumes including Baiser Volé, Cartier’s tribute to the majestic lily; and the wildly successful Cartier La Panthère, that pays homage to the gardenia.
Under Laurent’s guidance, La Panthère’s collection continues to grow, including both a lighter ‘eau’, and deeper versions. Laurent carries Cartier’s jewellery philosophy through the fragrance by using wonderful ingredients, and very few ingredients.