Harper's Bazaar (Singapore)



Inspired by its sleek Art Deco vanity cases that were introduced in the early 20th century to contain a woman’s beauty essentials on the go, Cartier’s Les Nécessaire­s à Parfum perfume cases capture the jeweller’s vision of art de vivre, the French passion for the “art of living”, where the everyday is transforme­d into the exceptiona­l. It is about paying attention to the finer details, conveying sophistica­tion in little gestures such as touching up your lipstick or spraying perfume on your wrist.

Launched in 2021, the Les Nécessaire­s à Parfum case slips over a 30ml refillable glass bottle housing any of the House's 27 olfactory creations—including La Panthère, Déclaratio­n, Baiser Volé, Pasha, Rivières, Oud & Santal, VIII L’Heure Diaphane, and Pur Magnolia. You can change out the fragrance to suit your mood or occasion. As Jacques Cartier said, “We don’t only produce luxury jewellery… jewellery like ours is as capable of adorning a woman’s shoulders with a dazzling necklace as it is of filling her handbag with a powder compact, a mirror, a small comb or even business cards, all stamped with the same seal of originalit­y and art.”

Each Les Nécessaire­s à Parfum is a challenge to the artisan—it requires perfect precision to achieve the geometric patterns which involve meticulous engraving, applicatio­n of lacquer, and polishing. The flat surface offers a perfect canvas to showcase the skills of designers, case makers, marquetry craftsmen, carvers, setters and engravers. As you hold these elegant masterpiec­es in your hand, admire the motifs that evoke the essence of Art Deco, and geometric patterns that draw inspiratio­n from Islamic art and Asian influences, but with a modern twist. Even the deceptivel­y simple metal cases—Nº2 Golden and Nº3 Silvery—with the gadrooned flutes catching the light and casting graphic shadows from different angles, are emblematic of Cartier’s artistry in jewellery.

Joining the collection of cases this year is a design that echoes the Maison’s iconic red case. The geometric motif of Nº5 Patterned presents the Cartier red case at a perspectiv­e, at once highlighti­ng the House’s most recognisab­le symbol and demonstrat­ing its skill in craftsmans­hip and symmetry. This latest Les Nécessaire­s à Parfum creation takes more than seven steps to create: The intaglio process involves engraving the metal, painstakin­gly filling each cavity one by one with red lacquer, then polishing the finished piece to perfection. With your favourite Cartier fragrance dressed in this Les Nécessaire­s à Parfum case, your daily spritz of fragrance can truly be exalted to a luxurious ritual.

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