There’s something about the ultra-slim lighters, elegant fountain pens and leather bound writing boxes in S.T Dupont’s current collection – a selection of which can be seen at William & Son’s Bruton Street store – that instantly transport you back to a bygone age of luxury and glamour. Think Casablanca, the film that is, or any other epic made during the golden age of Hollywood and there you have it.
Since its beginnings in 1872, the Paris-based luxury goods brand has acquired an impressive following; from emperors and statesmen to Picasso, Audrey Hepburn and Humphrey Bogart. Today, its expertly crafted products are a hit with the more modern-day glitterati.
This year marks S.T Dupont’s 145th anniversary. Brand CEO Alain Crevet is the man charged with bringing this historic luxury label to a younger audience and advancing it into the digital age through its recently launched e-commerce site. Fusing old with new is also part of the challenge. All of its products are produced by skilled craftspeople at its factory in Faverge, France. “As a heritage brand that is committed to innovation, we grow with new technology but stay true to traditional craft techniques,” says Alain noting the 150 steps it takes to create each of its signature lighters.
Prior to joining S.T Dupont, Alain headed up LVMH’s perfume and cosmetics division. He is also a member of the Colbert Committee, which unites the largest French luxury brands and promotes them around the world. Alain could also be described as an indefatigable traveller. He also plays rock guitar in his spare time and when in London, always makes time for a stop at the Gagosian and Halcyon galleries.
Perhaps packing for yet another business trip, visiting new stores and speaking directly with customers, spurred the idea to launch S.T Dupont’s latest foray into travel pieces. It’s new Iconic collection for instance, features a selection of travel bags and wallets. The line also boasts a dyed cotton canvas and leather holdall, similar to one that was previously commissioned by Humphrey Bogart. The story goes that ‘Bogie’ came to S.T Dupont in search of a travel bag, one akin to an oilskin doctor’s bag that was lightweight but rugged enough to stand up to the demands of his fast paced international lifestyle.
Staying on a Hollywood note, S.T Dupont recently launched several new products to coincide with the opening of ‘Murder on the Orient Express’. The most decadent, a limited-edition collector’s writing set is available to purchase for the sum of £1,500 at William & Sons. The set is inspired by the original 1930s S.T Dupont trunk case previously owned by Princess Eugene. Look closely and you will spot it whenever the camera pans around Princess Dragomiroff’s onscreen cabin.
As for choosing William & Son as one of its main London points of sale, Alain says: “S.T Dupont is the perfect fit with this luxury purveyor of watches and diamond jewellery. Its client base fits perfectly with that of S.T Dupont – catering to customers with an exquisite taste in craftsmanship.”