Paco Rabanne: Brand Insight
At Perfume Direct, we stock a huge range of perfume and aftershave brands that offer beautiful scents for every occasion. However, every now and again there comes a brand that becomes iconic. The success of 1 Million and Lady Million over the years has put Paco Rabanne fragrances up there with some of the world’s leading perfume brands.
The Paco Rabanne brand is also recognised for its fashion and accessories, becoming known as a brand that didn’t shy away from pushing the boundaries. So, what’s the story behind the brand? How did Paco Rabanne become such a household name over the years?
Paco Rabanne in Paris
The man behind the eponymous brand was born Francisco Rabaneda y Cuervo in 1934, in Spain. While he was still young, his father was executed during the Spanish Civil War and he fled to Paris with his mother.
In Paris, Paco Rabanne’s mother got a job working as a seamstress for Balenciaga, while his own ambitions took him to the École Nationale Supérieure des Beaux-Arts, where he studied architecture.
His introduction into the fashion industry came as a way to finance his studies, offering drawings of handbags and shoes for designers. Not long afterwards, Rabanne started designing costume jewellery for clients including Nina Ricci, Cristobal Balenciaga and Hubert de Givenchy.
Introduction to fashion
Paco Rabanne’s introduction to fashion might have been through jewellery, but he quickly evolved. He created and presented his first collection in 1966, based on oversized jewellery made from geometric shapes and vivid colours. He quickly became known as a designer who experimented with unusual materials.
The collection was known as ’12 Unwearable Dresses in Contemporary Materials’, and opened women’s eyes to other materials, instead of the usual silk and satin. Rabanne mostly rejected traditional techniques within the fashion industry, instead looking at unique materials and unconventional ways of assembling them.
Creating world leading fragrances
As with most fashion designers, a natural progression for Paco Rabanne was to create fragrances. He partnered with Puig; a huge company known for its impressive portfolio of brands.
The success of his fragrances made it possible for Rabanne to continue his journey and ensure he didn’t suffer from low profit margins. In 1987, Puig acquired the entire Paco Rabanne business and has continued to push it to further success.