It’s a big year for the legendary Chanel Nº5! This year, the house of Chanel celebrates 100 years of the game-changing and iconic perfume. One of the most exciting releases to come out of this is the new Factory 5 Collection, a series of 17 limited-edition products that turn on the design conceit of transforming utilitarian, everyday objects into ones of luxury.
As its name suggests, this collection spins on a factory theme. Thomas du Pre de Saint Maur, the brand’s head of global creative resources for fragrance and beauty, said in a statement that the idea was to return to the origins of Nº5: “To go and find, as Gabrielle Chanel did at the time, a new, offbeat, unexpected inspiration.”
One of the key inspirations is the understated bottle design of Nº5. When the laboratory bottle-inspired design first launched in 1921, it was a modernist statement against the ornate, almost baroque style of the day.
Think of it as an extension of Gabrielle Chanel’s precocious method of turning the ordinary – think jersey, tweeds, black and white – into fashionable symbols of luxury.
The form of everyday objects – refill sachets and burette bottles, for example – are nevertheless recognisable thanks to the black and white design iconography of Chanel Nº5.
With that inspiration in mind, the brand approached Factory 5 as a sort of parallel to Nº5’s own history – a “step to the side, in its own way” according to du Pre de Saint Maur.
Products like body oils, bath tablets and shower gels all come packaged in a witty everyday manner. Think tubes of paint, a tin for tea and even burette dispensers. It’s smart too: treating Nº5, a creation often whispered in mythic tones, like this gives it a fresh approachability.
That said, these products – five of which will be available from July 15 at all Chanel fragrance and beauty boutiques, with more to follow – are limited edition and you can bet they’ll be snatched up fast.
As utilitarian as they look, you can imagine the collectable quality is going to be high.