Q & a with sara carner from carner barcelona…
Hi Sara, thanks so much for your time. We absolutely love the Carner Barcelona range here at Lore Perfumery and wanted to get to know a little bit more about you and your incredible brand with a quick q & a…
What are your earliest and most fond memories with fragrance from childhood?
I was very lucky to grow up in a house in the countryside of Barcelona and I was surrounded by so many earthy woody scents: the sweet fresh scent of cut grass, the fruity-mint and somewhat rosy odour of geraniums, the earthy greenish smell of fig trees…It comes to my mind also the smell of Septembers of that particular bitter and woody aroma of the almond harvesting time. But most probably the smell that had a deepest impact on me was the smell of leather and tobacco that my father brought home on him from the family’s leather factory. That particular smell of raw leather mixed with the smell of warm and rich tobacco inspired me in the creation of Cuirs. Today one of our best sellers.
What inspired you to create the Carner Barcelona range?
I wanted to create a perfume collection that would connect with my beloved hometown, a collection of perfumes that would evoke the Mediterranean, cosmopolitan lifestyle of Barcelona. Barcelona is a constant source of inspiration, its architecture, culture and the unique way in which history merges with the contemporary lifestyle and the vitality of its people.
Also, when I created the brand in 2009, I had very clear that I wanted the perfumes to be top of the top in terms of the juice and packaging. I partnered with some of the most recognized noses over the world, from Paris to New York to Barcelona to ensure quality of the ingredients and the uniqueness of the creations. For the packaging we work with the best local designers and suppliers as I understand it is the only way to infuse the Mediterranean culture we stand for.
Did you have a background working in fragrance prior to creating Carner Barcelona?
Prior to creating Carner Barcelona I worked within the industry, first at Chanel and later at Shiseido. But I had not been within the process of perfume development “per se”. For the creation of the perfumes I was lucky enough to work with some of the best noses, who have all the merit. They believed in my project and vision and gave the brand the “credibility” I needed when I launched the brand back in 2009.
We love music here at Lore and really try to link music to memories like we do with fragrance. Are there any songs or artists that capture the memories of one of the Carner Barcelona perfumes for you?
There’s a song that captures really well the Mediterranean spirit, it became the song of the summer back in 2009 because it was used for the TV spot of one catalan beer brand. It really brings me to the effortless living of the Mediterranean, the sun, the summer, the sea, the good mood… https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1VRZlSSIrwY
I also love the music of the movie Vicky Cristina Barcelona…it’s just very Barcelona!
You work quite closely with some of your family members and obviously there is familial inspiration, plus the range is named after your family. Are there particular fragrances in the line that you immediately connect with family members/memories?
Absolutely, for example, Tardes is a perfume inspired in the scent of a summer evening in the catalán countryside, where I grew up. Notes of almonds, geraniums, roses… it’s a serene and enveloping perfume that transmits peace and harmony.
Cuirs is a perfume inspired in the family business, leather manufacturing, which my great grandfather started back in the XIX century. A mix of freshly tanned leather, the smell of the wood of the barrels and the smoke of the old leather ateliers.
Which fragrance from the line do you think captures the brand ethos of Carner Barcelona most succinctly for you currently?
Each perfume has a story connected with our city’s heritage; a place, a memory, a poem, a popular legend…For example, El Born is a fragrance that walks you through the cobbled streets of one of our oldest neighborhoods, Costarela evokes the feeling of freedom when admiring the Mediterranean sea or Besos is a perfume that talks about our latin culture where the kiss is such an important part of our lives with family and friends.
If I were to pick the one that better represents the city I would choose D600. With D600 I wanted to capture the scent of Barcelona, from the early morning in Las Ramblas where there is the market of La Boqueria, using spicy and citric notes, to the warmth of the sun during the mid-day using the powdery note of the iris, to the sophistication of the city at night with notes of vanilla and vetiver. D600 truly captures the urban lifestyle and the Mediterranean spirit of Barcelona.
What has been your most exciting moment with the brand so far?
Probably seeing for first time the perfumes in the store. After the initial effort with the development of the fragrances and the design of the packaging, seeing the final products on the store was a blast!!!
Also every time someone writes us about a personal experience with our brand or how one of our perfumes has significantly impacted his/her life is like having a shot of adrenaline and enthusiasm!!
Is there a dream fragrance that you are dying to create in the near future?
I would like to do a perfume about the Modernism, a movement embraced in Barcelona not only by art, but also by every field of culture, social life and politics. Its main form of expression was in architecture and its maximum ambassador was Gaudi.
One of the most interesting facets of the architectural Modernism was its decorative aspect, characterized by the aesthetic freedom and use of eclectic figures, exotic animals and the fusion of mythological creatures and the real world. A perfume inspired in that symbology would be fantastic!
What is your ultimate favourite fragrance note that you would put into every single fragrance if you could get away with it?
There is a compound called Georgywood created by Givaudan that I fell in love with when I smelled for first time, very unique and special: fresh, minty, sweet and green, an intense clean woody smell.
At Lore we are super excited to be launching 7 new scents from the Carner Barcelona range shortly – Volcano, the Oriental collection and your upcoming Fresh collection. Could you tell us a little bit about these perfumes and ranges?
Sure! Volcano is the 4th perfume of the Black Collection. It is a perfume that celebrates the powerful life of Mother Nature. More than 40 craters and 20 lava flows surround our cosmopolitan city, making our volcano land one of the most important in Europe. It is a Woody resinous perfume, notes of Indonesian nutmeg and Loatian red ginger merge with patchouli and vetiver.
The Fresh Collection is all about the lively, fun, happy attitude of the lifestyle along the Mediterranean coast.
With Bo-Bo, Salado and Fig Man I wanted to capture the main three facets that define our Mediterranean life.
Our sea – the unique way by which its vitality, color, scent and beauty positively affects our mood and daily life. Salado is a tribute to the Mediterranean waters, a tribute to the sea that ultimately explains our way of life.
Our culture – we love to get together, go out with friends and family, enjoy the good food, the good wine…we love to party and feel alive! Bo-Bo, a traditional dance rooted in our culture transmits the festive spirit of our land.
Our genius – Salvador Dalí, our most renowned artist, who lived by the Mediterranean on a fisherman village called Cadaqués, was constantly inspired by the beauty of the sea and its landscape. The fig tree, one of the most acclaimed Mediterranean trees, was also source of its surrealist inspiration. Fig Man is a tribute to the artist and the fig tree.