Henry McIntosh enjoys an exclusive interview with Villa Lusso founder Deborah J. Carducci.
With a name that translates from Italian to ‘luxury home’, you could be forgiven for thinking that Villa Lusso deals in luxury holiday homes. Whilst that’s not quite right, you probably still noticed the Italian connection.
Villa Lusso actually specialises in producing a carefully curated range of scented candles, body lotions, fragrances and oils. Their fragrances are purely evocative of everything that is so easy to love about Italy, from an aromatic Tuscan cucina to the fresh breeze of the Amalfi coast.
Whilst that explains the Italian vernacular, the use of luxury home does not quite become clear until you become acquainted with the brains behind the brand, Deborah J. Carducci.
An interior designer by trade, Carducci’s choice of name represents her desire for her products to be able to complement any interior. With such a meticulous attention to detail, it’s easy to see how Carducci has created such an exquisite range of products.
In a word they are stunning. Each, in its own way, is brilliantly representative of Italy. They are also luxurious for another reason. The candles are hand poured, have never been tested on animals and are free from the nastiness that populates some products; such as Parabens, Formaldehyde and Sodium Lauryl Sulfate. Instead, Villa Lusso’s candles are 100% soy, ensuring they are both good for you and the environment.
Given this, it’s little wonder that Villa Lusso has gained a strong celebrity following over the years, with actors such as Anthony Anderson (The Departed, Transformers, Law & Order) and Krista Allen (Baywatch, Days of our Lives) notable examples . The brand have also featured at various Hollywood events such as The Oscars and The Golden Globes, with Carducci as the marketing mind behind it all.
Here, she gives an exclusive interview to Luxurious Magazine.
LM: What inspired you to create Villa Lusso?
DJC: I wanted to create a luxurious brand for my design clients to enjoy in their home. I feel that every home deserves luxury, even if it is a simple touch.
At the time, I was travelling to Italy every year enjoying all of the wonderful sights and scents. On one particular trip, I was on a train to Florence from the Tuscan countryside, when I noticed an incredible Azure sky meeting a vista of endless Sunflowers.
As I lowered the window for a better view, I was greeted by a wonderful sweet floral scent. I immediately knew that I had to recreate this experience and when I returned, our Firenze scent was born.
Our sense of smell is closely linked to memory and emotion. Scent has an incredible ability to transport us to a certain time and place linking us to a particular memory or feeling. I knew then that Villa Lusso’s initial product offering would be our candles. Every detail right down to the packaging, labelling and the colour of the soy wax was important to me.
As I continued to design each additional scent for Villa Lusso, I poured through my travel photos thinking about all of the unique experiences and locations transforming these memories into scents. Once the candle collection was created, the body products followed in the matching scents to create a layering effect of the fragrances.
I once received an email from someone who purchased our Sicilia (almond biscotti) candle. She wanted to let us know that when she unwrapped the candle, she was immediately transported to her “Nona’s” kitchen. She said it brought a tear to her eye as she remembered all of the almond cookies she would bake with her beloved Grandmother.
As a designer, I wanted to make sure that my candles and body products could be placed into any interior space.
This is the story of Villa Lusso.
LM: What is the philosophy behind Villa Lusso?
DJC: Villa Lusso is all about the experience and enjoying the simple pleasures of life. Our products bring a dash of luxury to your home, with the ambience of a candle along with the emotional experience of the scent. In addition to our uniquely scented 100% soy candle line, our vegan body products are hand poured with the highest quality and purity keeping it safe for you and our environment. Our shampoo/body wash is gluten free. There is no animal testing done on any of our products. Our products offer luxury for your home and body while being earth friendly.
LM: What makes your products unique?
DJC: The Villa Lusso collection of scents are unique blends created to give the customer the experience of visiting a city in Italy. Our ingredients have been carefully selected and all of the products are hand made by experts in their fields. Each scent has been carefully selected to represent a city in Italy which makes it unique.
LM: Your candles have featured at the Emmy Awards, Golden Globes and the Oscars. How did this come about?
DJC: At the time of these events, Villa Lusso was a member of a group of artisanal businesses. We were selected from the group to display and gift to celebrities at the Emmy’s, Golden Globes and Oscar luxury gift lounges in Hollywood. As I like to say, Villa Lusso has been to Hollywood three more times than I have!
LM: Do you have a notable celebrity clientele as a result?
DJC: We received many photos of celebrities holding and experiencing our products in the gift lounge. One particular actor (Anthony Anderson) reached out via direct email to us let us know that he loved our Perugia (chocolate scented) lotion. We also exchanged several tweets and direct email from an actress (Krista Allen) who loved our Amalfi (Peaches & Jasmine) scent. It was exciting to watch our twitter feed lighting up during the events of these Hollywood pre-parties. The celebrities were all very gracious and complimentary of our products.
LM: Your fragrances are inspired by places across Italy. Do you often visit? Where are your favourite spots?
DJC: Italy is definitely one of my favourite countries to visit. I love the driving the Amalfi coast and have visited several times. I’ve had fun strolling through Positano and I remember taking the boat over to Capri for a very special birthday with my husband. I also loved Ravello and its panoramic views. The Cinque Terre is simply magical with its’ Via dell’Amore. I am partial to the seaside towns. Florence will always be one of my favourite cities as it was my first visit to Italy.
I love its great shopping and delectable food. Honestly, there are too many wonderful places to even mention!
LM: You support charity through your Cucina Italiana Candle, how important is it for luxury brands in general to support charitable organisations?
DJC: I think it is so important for luxury brands to support charities, whether they are local to the brand or national organizations. Businesses, in general, should be giving back to these establishments who can use our help as well as the exposure and reach that our brands can give to them.
LM: What does the future hold for Villa Lusso?
DJC: Villa Lusso will be continuing to expand the line with new and different offerings in fragrance. We are adding a Wine Collection of candles this spring featuring: Pinot Grigio, Prosecco, Rosato and Sangiovese. Additionally, our brand has plans to expand into luxury linens and other products for your home.
LM: Aside from your products, are there any luxuries you can’t do without?
DJC: Fendi purses, Santa Margherita Pinot Grigio and banana gelato.
Villa Lusso – Where and how
P.O. Box 2641
Natick, MA 01760