A Scrappy Scent Success Story

Chicago woman follows her nose to hit perfume based on memories of grandma
By Drew Nelles,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 21, 2008 6:25 PM CDT
Jessica Dunne's Ellie Nuit is more "contemporary than the original, it is more velvet and less lace doily," writes the New York Times.   (elliedperfume.com)
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(Newser) – New fragrances are typically carefully managed, big-budget affairs. But 32-year-old Jessica Dunne has created old-fashioned hit perfumes with old-fashioned determination and hard work, the New York Times reports. A smart call to an iconic New York perfume shop, $100,000 of her savings, and a little help from friends helped Dunne corner a nostalgic niche market with Ellie, a scent inspired by her grandmother.

“A brand is always a story well told,” one perfume exec says, and the scrappy story behind Dunne’s scent has helped sell hundreds of the $180 bottles. With Ellie a minor hit, Dunne has introduced offshoot Ellie Nuit, and now devotes herself full-time to her perfume. “I had made it as a personal project, and now it is out there in the world,” she says.