(Image: Freedom Fries, Bottomless. Alexander Kargaltsev.)
Perfumer not cited by Dior.
I Love Dior is my latest $12 Ebay purchase. I haven’t received it yet, but the bottle, the name, the zeitgeist give me more than enough to start writing.
In 2003, French Fries became “Freedom Fries” when a US member of Congress proposed excising France from the American consciousness for the perceived betrayal of opposing the invasion of Iraq. I think there was “Freedom Toast” as well.
I imagine that the Dior perfume, released in 2002, was in the works before 9/11, but I don’t know when the name, image, marketing came into play. The bottle is the generic bottle that Dior were using for Diorella, Diorissimo, Dioressence at the time. LVMH used the bottle to bridge the Classics to the Crap (see: Dior Me, Dior Me Not; Dior Star and Forever and Ever Dior) in the hopes that nobody would notice the difference. The I Love Dior box and bottle sported a grainy close-up of denim and a decal with, “I (Heart) Dior.”
I suppose I Heart Dior was one of the perfumes hoping to bandwagon on the success of YSL Baby Doll’s nouveau feminism. Still, it’s hard not to see I Heart Dior as a dumbed down version of j’Adore (translation: I heart) for Americans. J’Adore was enormously popular and accessible and I Heart Dior reads as an unnecessary dilution of an already least-common denominator.
Given the timing of its release, I Heart Dior turned out to be Dior’s prequel to Freedom Fries.