Smythe gets sensual for fragrance debut

Who: Smythe, with Open for creative and media.

What: A launch campaign for the Canadian fashion brand’s new fragrance.

When & Where: It’s digital only, with a targeted buy on Facebook and Instagram that combines still photography with 15- and six-second videos.

Why: Smythe launched in 2004 with a singular mission to create a perfect blazer for women. It has since expanded to offer a full ready-to-wear collection, just opened its first brick-and-mortar store in Toronto, and launched two new fragrance items: Perfume and a room/textile spray.

For the launch campaign, Open wanted something distinctly different for the category. “We could have shown the bottle and added a big Smythe logo like most perfume advertising, but we wanted to do something more clever and elevated, to reflect the Smythe brand,” said creative director Martin Beauvais.

How: Rather than spotlighting the fragrances, Open worked with Toronto photographer William Ukoh from Rodeo Production to produce sensual video and still photography that shows where on the skin the perfume could be worn, accompanied by the simple headline “Smythe: the fragrance.”  “It’s about the woman, and the product in its purest form,” said Beauvais.

According to Smyth founder Andrea Lenczner, Covid and the accompanying lockdowns have given fragrances new meaning for some people. “During lockdown(s), scent became such an important factor in creating a sense of hope and optimism,” she said. “Donning perfume, lighting candles and incense, and using pillow and rooms sprays literally lifted our mood.”


David Brown