Meet the cofounder who crafts colognes with character.
Every perfume tells a tale. Just ask husband-and-wife team Christophe Cervasel and Sylvie Ganter, creators of Atelier Cologne, the French fragrance house that delivers storytelling through scent. Characters like diamond thieves, wistful writers, reunited lovers, and more serve as the inspiration for the brand’s charming collection of colognes for both men and women. Here, we discover the love story behind the brand straight from Ganter, the star herself. RENEE TRILIVAS
How did you two come together to create Atelier Cologne? Christophe and I have worked together for the past eight years. We fell in love along the way. The trigger came from our love for cologne. My dream had always been to create a fragrance house. Perfume had always been our passion and our profession. Christophe and I have only worn cologne type of scents our entire life. In the past, I found myself in permanent search of different kinds of colognes that would have different personalities and that would last on the skin. The idea grew naturally and organically from there. Atelier Cologne was born a few years later, and we created our first Cologne Absolue in 2009, 300 years after the first creation of eau de cologne.
What exactly is Cologne Absolue? Cologne Absolue is a term we invented. It means a citrus-based scent, which is the original meaning of cologne, blended with unexpected ingredients in a type of concentration between 15 and 20 percent, thus with personality and lasting power. At Atelier Cologne, we work with the best natural essential oils and provide exceptional quality of concentrations to our perfume formulas. We take two-to-five years to finalize a Cologne Absolue since we want to be sure it is absolutely unique and different from any other perfumes already existing.
Where do you find inspiration for the colognes? Our inspiration comes from stories or scenarios that I write with Christophe. They serve as the base for the creation of our perfumes. We write the stories during road trips. We fly so often that the real moment of relaxation for us is when we drive our car—the two of us or with our five kids! The stories are used as an introduction to the scents. I like to tell these narratives to my clients before I talk about the ingredients. Many of them chose not only the perfume, but the story that inspired it, as well. We did this because we want our customers to feel like the main characters. We create perfumes for us of course, but probably more to share them with other people all around the world.