Sycamore has a new scent.
Ex Nihilo —meaning “out of nothing” in Latin—is a Parisian fragrance house founded in 2013 by Sylvie Loday, Olivier Royère, and Benoît Verdier. Since its inception, this genre-redefining company carved out a space at the intersection of luxury and the Avant-garde; now it has an 860 square-foot space on Sycamore Avenue too.
“We of course were interested in Rodeo Drive and Melrose Place,” said Marine Roland, Ex Nihilo’s General Manager for the U.S. and Canada. “Then we came to Sycamore District and saw Just One Eye, we heard a new French restaurant was opening nearby, we really felt like something good was happening here.”
The Los Angeles boutique—Ex Nihilo’s first American flagship—honors the high-art aesthetic of its rue Saint-Honoré store (the white marble, the polished brass finishes, etc.) while adding casual SoCal flourishes like raw concrete floors and an industrial ceiling. The result is a vibe that’s both laidback and exclusive.
All of this, of course, is meant to be merely a backdrop to the reason for coming: the fragrances. Front and center sit the brand’s core collection of ready-to-wear scents—from the Cologne 352 (a symphony of Italian lemon, lily of the valley, and white cedarwood reminiscent of a garden stroll) to the torrid olfactory love affair of pink peppercorn, peony, and amber known as Explicite. Shoppers can also score scented candles, perfumed oils, and limited-edition collaborations with artists like Daniela Busarello and Mathieu César. Los Angeles will get its own exclusive fragrance with a not-yet-named collaborator in October.
However, the pièce-de-résistance (if you will) is the company’s Osmologue, the spectacularly chic perfume bar that allows for fragrance personalization through cutting-edge technology. Here, patrons can meet with an Ex Nihilo consultant to experience ingredients like rose of May, iris pallida, or orange blossom in their purest forms and then combine them with the help of the Osmologue to create the desired result.
Ex Nihilo is located at 926 N. Sycamore Avenue.