In the mini-movie for the new Nina Ricci fragrance, Nina Fantasy, a gamine girl – Florrie, the face and voice of the perfume – opens up a treasured box of the apple-shaped scent and unleashes a whimsical wonderland in her sun-dappled Parisian apartment, complete with animated floating flowers, balloons and butterflies. In short, springtime comes to life in Florrie’s abode. (scroll down to see the video.)
The limited edition scent, Nina Fantasy, is the second fragrance fronted by Florrie, a singer from the U.K. (her first was Nina L’Elixir). A fruity floral scent, Fantasy features crisp pear, mandarin and bergamot at the top, heliotrope, Bulgarian rose absolute and cherry blossom at the heart, and a sweet finish of vanilla bourbon absolute and brown sugar. Packaged in a white porcelain bottle playfully dotted with hot pink and gold apples and butterflies, Fantasy, both with its juice and flaçon, deftly captures dreams of spring. “It’s very floral and fruity and it reminds me of summer,” says Florrie of the scent. “It’s definitely making me look forward to spring.”
Florrie was born Florence Arnold in 1988, but her parents dubbed her “Florrie” from a young age: “Both my mom and dad had an Auntie Florrie,” says the musician and now model, and the name stuck. Florrie has been in the music business since 2008, (initially as a drummer working with acts such as The Pet Shop Boys and Girls Aloud), but was encouraged by producers to set out on her own. In 2010, she became an independent solo singer and musician, releasing much of her infectious, electronic-infused pop music for free online. Her EPs have charted high on iTunes both in the UK and the US and she’s since toured extensively around the world.
In 2010, Florrie signed with Nina Ricci as the face of L’Elixir, which no doubt helped her career flourish. “I was a very new artist and it was an amazing opportunity to get myself and my music out there,” she says. “They knew I wasn’t a model – that I was a musician – and they really liked that. I think a lot of people have definitely discovered my music through Nina Ricci.”
When it comes to fragrance, Florrie lets her mood determine her choice of scent. “I started wearing perfume when I was a teenager, and I remember my grandma wearing it,” she says. “But I don’t necessarily wear it every day; if I’m working in the studio, I’ll be in a rush to get there so I need to get ready as quickly as possible. But I’ll definitely wear fragrance when I go out in the evening. The great thing with Nina Fantasy is that you can wear it during the day and in the evening.” Florrie gravitates to floral scents and cites lily as one of her favourite notes, but she shies away from perfumes that overpower, which is why she’s drawn to Fantasy. “I like the scent of the perfume when you have worn it for a couple of hours and you can kind of smell the vanilla,” she says. “It’s very sweet when you put it on, but then it fades a bit throughout the day.”
As for beauty, the singer takes a minimal approach to her makeup routine: “Day to day, I don’t wear a lot – just a tinted moisturizer and a bit of mascara,” she says. When going out at night, though, Florrie goes for a strong lip or smokey eye, but never highlights both features at once. Her favourite lipstick: MAC Morange, a bold orangey-red. “I also have makeup-free days. I think it’s really important to give your skin a break,” she says.
Florrie recently completed a full album and is now pondering whether to stay the independent route or sign with a major label. “I spent the last two years building up a fan base and doing gigs – just being really creative and trying to figure out my sound,” says Florrie. “It’s been really amazing, to build that up. And it’s not just in the UK – it’s been all over the world. That’s the great thing about releasing music online is that anyone can access it.”
While she delights in the idea of daydreams and fairytales, and cites Alice in Wonderland as a personal favourite, Florrie prefers to find inspiration from the world around her. “It all comes from personal experience; it can be seeing some people talk on the bus or watching something on TV, or hearing another song,” she says. “I think that it’s good just to keep an open mind and just be inspired by everyday life.”
Nina Ricci Nina Fantasy Eau de Toilette Spray, $68, is available now at select drug and department stores.