Cartier Ion Orchard reopens its doors with a special exhibition titled Cartier, Icon of Style


By now you must have already caught sight of the gorgeous Cartier ferris wheel parked outside Ion Orchard shopping mall – or seen it plastered all over Instagram. This gigantic structure is just the first of many things happening at this Cartier boutique, which is set to reopen its doors officially on 24th November. And did you know that this three-story boutique is the largest Cartier store in all of Southeast Asia?

Spanning a total of 688 square metres, the store’s remodelling was done by the famed Parisian artist, designer, scenographer, painter and photographer Bruno Moinard, who made sure to marry the French Art de Vivre (art of living, the French way) with multiple references to Singaporean culture as a Garden City – embracing the beauty, richness and diversity of it all.


Artist’s impression of Le Salon Cartier on the third level of Cartier ION Orchard

Inspired by the Singapore’s tropical climate, the external 20-metre-long glass façade is patterned with palm trees and raindrops to elicit a sense of privacy and exclusiveness. Another key feature is a custom-made sculpture of art – in the stairwell between the first and second floors. The Cartier panther – carved in bas-relief – nestles amongst the tropical environment on a plaster panel, referencing to Singapore’s very own flora and fauna.

On the third and highest floor, the Le Salon Cartier has been enriched with Peranakan artefacts exuding the splendour of this beautiful local Singaporean culture.


Shirin ‘Nina Dyer’ Aga Khan Panther Bangle

But more exciting news awaits. Cartier Singapore has – as part of the reopening celebrations – specially curated an exhibition of selected historic and extraordinary pieces brought in from the Cartier archives in Paris. The exhibition titled ‘Cartier, Icon of Style’ has been specially curated – showcasing selected beautiful historic and extraordinary jewellery pieces.

More than a Cartier symbol. A timeless emblem first tamed by Louis Cartier and his muse, Jeanne Toussaint, the totemic panther carries on her reign.

Titled Cartier, Icon of Style, the exhibition highlights, among other things, the origins of the Maison’s love affair with the panther motif. The French Maison was the first jeweller to adopt the panther. The elegant feline was used for the firts time on a wristwatch in 1914 with a setting of onyx recreating the animal’s fur.


Barbara Hutton’s Tiger Clip

When Jeanne Toussaint was appointed as creative director in 1933, the panter became even more as an emblematic motif for the Maison. Toussaint worked closely alongside founder Louis Cartier and was nicknamed ‘La Panthère’, presumably due to her freedom, strength of character and the love pather in her lifestyle. One of her most outstanding inputs lies in the search on volume and attidudes of the animal. For Jeanne Toussaint, the panther – now an iconic motif – is clearly the emblem of timeless femininity unfettered by convention.

Marked by wild and beautiful femininity, the fearless and audacious panther later seduced countless personalities; royalty, celebrities and femme fatales, who would continue the legend through new savoir-faire and unexplored attitudes in precious materials.

Both, Louis Cartier and Jeanne Toussaint, also had a mutual interest in, not to say a fascination with, other cultures. This has helped shape not just the aesthetic of one or other object, but the entire Cartier style. A visual language, wich has extended to every creation and whose ‘vocabulary’ has been constantly expanding.


The Duchess of Windsor’s Panther Brooch

The ‘Cartier, Icon of Style’ exhibition highlights the orgins of the panther and its rich connections with some of the most well-known figures, such as the Duchess of Windsor, Shirin – Nina Dyer – Aga Khan and Barbara Hutton, just to name a few.

Open to the public, the exhibition will run from November 24 to December 6. Monday to Friday: 12pm to 9.00pm, Saturday to Sunday: 10.30am to 9.00pm. Keen individuals are encouraged to indicate registration interest on Cartier ‘Icon of Style’ as viewing slots are limited.

Come into the world of Cartier.





Elizabeth Arden

Florence Nightingale Graham (December 31, 1878 – October 18, 1966), who went by the business name Elizabeth Arden was born in 1878 in Woodbridge, Ontario, Canada. Her parents had emigrated to Canada from Cornwall, United Kingdom, in the 1870s. Her father, William Graham, was Scottish and her mother, Susan, was Cornish and had arranged for a wealthy aunt in Cornwall to pay for her children’s education. Arden dropped out of nursing school in Toronto.

She then joined her elder brother in Manhattan, New York, working briefly as a  bookkeeper for the E.R. Squibb Pharmaceuticals Company. She then worked, again briefly, for Eleanor Adair, an early beauty culturist, as a ‘treatment girl’. While there, Arden spent hours in their lab, learning about skincare.

Florence Nightingale Graham, who went by the business name Elizabeth Arden, was became a businesswoman who founded what is now Elizabeth Arden, Inc., and built a cosmetics empire in the United States. At the peak of her career, she was one of the wealthiest and well know women in the world!

Elizabeth Arden

Elizabeth Arden: “every woman has the right to be beautiful.” With that philosophy, she launched advertising campaigns to help normalize the use of makeup across the country.

In 1909 Arden formed a partnership with Elizabeth Hubbard, another culturist. When the partnership dissolved, she coined the business name ‘Elizabeth Arden’ from her former partner and from ‘Tenneyson’s poem ‘Enoch Arden’. With a $6,000 loan from her brother, she then used the shop space to open her first salon on 5th Avenue.

In 1912 Arden traveled to France to learn beauty and facial massage techniques used in the Paris beauty salons.She returned with a collection of rouges (blushers) and tinted powders she had created. Arden was, in 1914, the first to introduce modern eye makeup to North America after her formal training in Paris.

In 1915 Elizabeth Arden married Thomas j. Lewis, an American Banker. By this marriage, she was automatically a naturalized American citizen. In the same year started to operate and Arden international she opened salons around the world, all with a red door, her trademark. Arden collaborated with A. Fabian Swanson, a chemist, to create a ‘fluffy’ face cream. The success of the cream, Venetian Cream Amoretta, and corresponding lotion, Arden Skin Tonic, led to a long-lasting business relationship. This revolutionized cosmetics, bringing a scientific approach to formulations.

Elizabeth Arden Eight Hour Cream re edition

Elizabeth Arden’s most famous, ’till today: Eight Hour cream. Here in a new re-edition .

And by the 1930s, yes, in the middle of the Great Depression, her company was bringing in roughly $4 million a year! In 1934, she opened the Maine Chance residential spa in Rome, Maine, the first destination beauty spa in the United States.It operated until 1970. Ardens passion in her work led in 1934 to a divorce. A second marriage to a Russian Prince lasted only thirteen months.

Elizabeth Arden 1930's

Elizabeth Arden, 1930’s. By the end of the 1930s it was said; ‘There are only three American names that are known in every corner of the globe: Singer sewing machines, Coca Cola, and Elizabeth Arden’.

1935 saw the launch of Blue Grass fragrance. It quickly became one of the most successful Elizabeth Arden scents.

Elizabeth Arden Blue Grass

Elizabeth Arden Blue Grass

Around 1940 Arden launged ‘White Orchid’ perfume. Other makeup innovations included creating foundations that matched a person’s skin tone; creating the idea of the “Total Look” in which lip, cheek, and fingernail colors matched or coordinated; and the first to make a cosmetics commercial shown in movie houses. During the second World War, Elizabeth Arden saw that market changed.  She saw the changing needs of the American woman entering the work force. She showed women how to apply makeup and dress appropriately for careers outside the home. She developed and brought a lipstick on the market in the ‘Montezuma Red’ color, a color that is applied at the red in the uniforms of the female soldiers.


Elizabeth Arden Pink Violet, 1950’s (Click photo to enlarge).

Marilyn Monroe on the way to shopping at Elizabeth Arden Salon

Marilyn Monroe on the way to shopping at Elizabeth Arden Salon (Click photo to enlarge).

In the years Elizabeth Arden has many famous clients like Marilyn Monroe, the Begum Om Habibeh Aga Khan III, Nina Dyer Aga Khan and Martine Carole. Elizabeth Arden wasn’t only famous for her salons and Spa’s. She offerd a lot more! For (vèry) special clients, she offered treatments at home. She also sended ‘her’ hairdressers when they where needed….

Signed to Roger Flor, 1er coiffeur Elizabeth Arden, 1959 (29 x 39 cm)HH Begum Om Habibeh Aga Khan, signed for Roger Flor 1er Coiffeur Elizabeth Arden, 1959 (photo signed by Sam Levine)(Privat Collection) (Click photo to enlarge).

Nina Dyer Aga Khan Elizabeth Arden

Nina Sheila Dyer Aga Khan signed for Roger Flor 1er Coiffeur Elizabeth Arden (photo signed by Tony Armstrong John, Pimlico Road studio )(Privat Collection) (Click photo to enlarge).

Elizabeth Arden circa 1960

Elizabeth Arden, circa 1960 (Click photo to enlarge).

In recognition of her contribution to the cosmetics industry, she was awarded the ‘Lègion d’Honneur by the French government in 1962. Later in her life, Arden was one of the first women to appear on the cover of Time magazine, and one of her horses won the Kentucky Derby (can you imagine the parties she must have thrown?!), but it’s undeniable that the greatest accomplishment of her lifetime was her legacy of breaking barriers and making the world a more awesome place.

Arden died at Lenox Hill Hospital in Manhattan in 1966; she was interred in the Sleepy Hollow Cemetery in Sleepy Hollow, New York, under the name Elizabeth N. Graham. Her company was at that time worth between $35 and $45 million, and they possessed more than a hundred beauty salons all over the world.

Elizabeth Arden is now still a reputable name, but had some different owners. Acquired by Eli Lilly & Co in 1971; bought by Faberge in 1987, merged into Unilever in 1989. Later the Company split into two smaller companies: Elizabeth Arden and Parfums International. The Elizabeth Arden side, looked after all of the Arden cosmetics and fragrances, while Parfums International created fragrances for Nino Cerruti, Valentino, Karl Lagerfeld and Chloe.

Elizabeth Arden Ceramide Capsules

Elizabeth Arden’s bestseller and Holy Grail: Ceramide Capsules. It moists and restores. Perfect to take with you on holydays! Unisex and easy to use: One capsule for the whole face, neck, and whats left… for the back of your hands! (Click photo to enlarge).

On 31st October 2000, Unilever sold it’s Arden business, to US company, FFI Fragrances for $225 million, as part of Unilever’s program to shed operations that ‘don’t meet the company’s strategic needs’.

FFI is based in Miami Lakes, produce fragrances by Bogart and Halston. On completion of sale, FFI decided to trade under the Arden name., included in the sale was the Elizabeth Taylor brands of Passion and White Diamonds. Unilever kept control of the Parfums International brands (Cerruti, Valentino, Lagerfeld and Chloe). The current company name is still Elizabeth Arden.

In 2002, Catherine Zeta-Jones became Elizabeth Arden’s ‘face’ and corporate spokesperson. Catherine said; “I have read masses about Elizabeth Arden. She was a visionary, and I am proud to be a part of the company she created,” and; “As Miss Arden said, ‘to be beautiful and natural is the birthright of every woman,’ and I wholeheartedly agree with her philosophy, and dare I say, conviction to her dream.”

In 2003, Elizabeth Arden acquired the license for Gant USA fragrances from Romella.

In 2003, Elizabeth Arden Graham was posthumously inducted into the Canadian Horse Racing Hall of Fame.

After Ardens death the company founded itself partly, next to their skincare and makeup, on the development of perfumes. With classics like ‘White Orchid’, ‘On Dit’ and ‘Blue Grass’, a new Elizabeth Arden perfume was marketed under the name ‘Red Door’, named after her famous trademark (all her salons were equipped with a red front door). Furthermore, the company brought perfumes out for celebrities as Elizabeth Yaylor, Hilary Duff, Britney Spears and Mariah Carey.

Elizabeth Arden

Elizabeth Arden actif on African market (Click photo to enlarge).

elizabeth arden flawless future ceramid moisture cream complex serum eye gel 1

Elizabeth Arden Flawless Future Ceramid Moisture Cream Complex, Serum and Eye Gel (Click photo to enlarge).

Today, the company she founded brings in over a billion in sales and gives generously to causes including New York City’s public schools, Save the Children, and the Look Good…Feel Better campaign, which helps boost the morale of cancer patients.

by Jean Amr

The Origins of Cartier’s Legendary Panthère Jewels


No other animal figure is more emblematic of a jewelry brand than Cartier’s panther. The iconic cat pounced its way into the French Maison’s designs in the early 20th century, at a time when animal skins were all the rage in the fashionable world.

Up until the First World War, the panther and its likeness rarely appeared in medieval and Renaissance Europe. Panther skins during the sixteenth and seventeenth century were prized items in curiosity cabinets, a valuable hunting animal revered for its exquisitely patterned fur. As Europe explored and colonized the world, European painters depicted the new colonies and their ‘noble savages’ wearing primitive swaths of leopard skin.

Cartier Boutique

By 1900, ‘Lady with Panther’ became a favorite motif in European art, much like the Virgin and the Unicorn theme during the medieval era. The subtly erotic and infernal nature of the combination was beguiling. The Lady-Panther subject was most notably rendered by Belgian artist Walter Sauer in ‘Femme devenue panthère’ in 1919 and fellow Belgian symbolist Khnopff in ‘La Caresse’.

During the early 19th century, the panther’s image as a motif was quite palpable, its rise in popularity partially credited to the stylish interiors decorated by Elsie de Wolfe. The New York native and amateur actress, also known as Lady Mendl, made her mark on society not on the stage but in her exceptional talents in interior décor. In 1907, de Wolfe was commissioned for the interior design of the newly built Colony Club, the premier women’s social club in New York whose building was designed by famed architect Stanford White. The rave reviews of her work launched her career as the preferred interior decorator of international society. More importantly, de Wolfe pioneered the use of exotic animal skins in interior design, examples of which could be seen at her Villa Trianon in Versailles.

Cartier Panter Earrings Art Deco

Cartier Panter Diamond and Onyx Earrings (Click photo to enlarge).

As the rest of the fashionable world followed suit in incorporating panther skins into their work, designers at Cartier found the panther skin ripe with inspiration, its modish print re-imagined in onyx and diamond. The first panther-pattern appeared on a wrist-watch in 1914, with its second appearance seen just a year later on a pendant watch.

Interestingly, the first image of a panther at the French firm appeared not in jeweled form but in a drawing by the great French illustrator George Barbier. In 1914, Louis Cartier commissioned the picture ‘Lady with Panther’ from Barbier to be used as an exhibition card. So striking was the illustration, which shows a lady wearing a Poiret gown with a black panther laying at her feet in between two columns, that Cartier later used it for advertising. However, Cartier had yet to create a reproduction of the panther figure in full.

Cartier Panther

‘Lady with Panther’ by George Barbier for Cartier, 1914 (Click photo to enlarge)

Presumably made around 1917, a vanity case owned by Jeanne Toussaint, a close friend of Louis Cartier’s at the time and later the firm’s Creative Director, featured the first representation of the entire animal. Fondly known as ‘Panther’, Toussaint’s affinity for the exotic could be seen in the number of animal furs she owned, as well as the panther carpets that adorned her apartment in Paris.

Cartier Jeanne Toussaint

Jeanne Toussaint photographed by Adolf de Meyer, 1920 (Click photo to enlarge).

Not too surprisingly, the design of her onyx panther vanity case proved quite fitting. It was the first in a series with animal decorations in miniature, based largely on Barbier’s 1914 drawing. In similarity to the illustration, the decorations on the vanity case depict a stalking panther in diamonds situated in between two carved emerald cypress trees instead of ionic columns. Other versions in the series include dogs at play and a leaping gazelle.

Cartier Panther Cigarete Case

This vanity case, made in 1928, is similar in design to that owned by Jeanne Toussaint. It’s made of gold, platinum, enamal, diamonds, emeralds, rubies and onyx. The interior has a mirror, lipstick case, covered powder compartment and a cigarette compartment. This item is part of a later series of cases also inspired by Georges Barbier’s drawings of panthers, dogs, and gazelles. Another case decorated with greyhounds belonged to Elma Rumsey, Pierre Cartier’s wife. (Photo: N. Welsh, Cartier Collection © Cartier) (Click photo to enlarge).

Though the abstract dot-pattern derived from the panther pelt would speckle a handful of Cartier’s designs from 1922 to 1927, it would be years before a three-dimensional version of the panther would emerge. That momentous event occurred in 1948 when the Duke of Windsor placed a special order for a panther brooch as a present for the Duchess of Windsor. The resulting jewel is a powerful yet simple composition: atop a 116.74-carat emerald rests a proud outstretched gold panther flecked with black enamel. One year later, the Duchess of Windsor added a second panther jewel to her collection, this time in the form of a pavé diamond panther with sapphire spots crouching around a stunning 152.35-carat cabochon sapphire. The third, and most exceptional, jewel in the Duchess’s suite of panthers was ordered in 1952: a beautifully articulated bracelet of an outstretched panther in diamond and onyx with emerald eyes. Even more cats would later be added to the Duchess’s collection.

Cartier Panther Duchess

Cartier Panther Duchess

The Duchess of Windsor’s suite of Cartier Panther Jewels (Click photo’s to enlarge)

It wasn’t long before society’s most stylish doyennes wanted panthers of their own. In 1950, Daisy Fellowes commissioned a panther brooch of sapphire and diamond, the design of which is clearly modeled after the pendant of the Order of the Golden Fleece.

Princess Nina Aga Khan’s appetite for Cartier’s panther jewels began in 1957 with a jabot-pin featuring an outstretched panther much like that of the Duchess of Windsor’s. Within a few years, the Princess would acquire the most extensive suite of panther jewelry from Cartier. Her impressive parure included an articulated panther pendant of the Golden Fleece design, an open panther-head bangle of similar design to ancient Mediterranean animal-head styles, a second fluted gold bangle with panther-head terminals that could also be worn as earclips, and a ring with a crouching tiger. She didn’t only love panther Jewels, she commisioned also accessoiries, a bag, watch  and picture frames.

Cartier Panther Nina Dyer Aga Khan

The third most notable collector of Cartier’s cats was Barbara Hutton, who opted for the firm’s tiger variations. She commissioned a brooch of canary-yellow diamonds striped with onyx along with a pair of matching earclips, all of which are in the likeness of the Golden Fleece, as well as a spectacular gold and black enamel tiger bracelet and an evening bag featuring an enameled tiger ornament.

Today, the panther remains Cartier’s most favorite designs. The older covetable cats continue to achieve astronomical prices at auction while newer versions are available from Cartier in a range of styles and prices, from the firm’s one-of-a-kind High Jewelry creations to more simplified varieties in the Panthère de Cartier collection.

Cartier Panther Ring

A coral, onyx and diamond

Cartier Panther new designs (Click photos to enlarge).

An Onyx and Diamond


Cartier Panther

Cartier Panther

Cartier Panther watch

Cartier Baguette Panthere Watch

Celebrating the art of haute fragrance.


House of Sillage showcases its signature fragrances along with their new limited-edition bottles.

Each of Luxury fragrance producer House of Sillage’s scents and artisan cupcake-inspired crystal bottles are created and produced in France by a team of professional noses, artists and craftsmen. These House of Sillage Limited-edition bottles, filled with precious signature fragrances, wearing names as ‘Love is in the Air’, ‘Cherry Garden’, ‘Nouez Moi’, ‘Benevolence’, ‘Emerald Reign’ and ‘Tiara’. Featuring finest, hand-placed Swarovski crystal on each cap, the bottle has its own serial number to ensure the exclusivity of a long-term keepsake.

Sillage Nouez Moi

Sillage Nouez Moi. Seeing this bottle, the cap, for the firt time, it reminded me on Elizabeth Taylor’s ‘White Diamonds’ (Click photo to enlarge).

Sillage Emerald Reign

Sillage Emerald Reign, the now famous ‘Tiger’ bottle, wich Nina Dyer and the Duchess of Windsor would have liked… a lot!(Click photo to enlarge).

Sillage Emerald Reign

Sillage Emerald Reign, another limited edition (Click photo to enlarge).

These precious’ bottles are a matter of tast. You like them, or not at all. But special they are! Knowing that they worked with a team of professional noses, artists and craftsmen, and using the ‘right’ ingrediants I hope I can bring you some reviews soon on these fragances.

by Jean Amr