Once upon a time, the Armenian Paper

Once upon a time, the Armenian Paper

The history of the Armenian Paper has remained a family tradition. Flagship products and new collections have perfumed our interiors for over a century.

A 100% French story

Despite its name, which evokes the Orient, the history of the brand is nevertheless French. Born in the Paris suburbs (Montrouge) in 1885, it was invented by Auguste Ponsot. The latter discovered during a trip to Armenia the virtues of benzoin. This resin was used by the Ottomans to purify substandard or cholera-infected homes. Back in France, he joined forces with pharmacist Henri Rivier and, together, they succeeded in liquefying the resin. It is then dipped in a special paper which burns without producing a flame. The brand quickly became internationally successful, so much so that it was awarded a medal at the Universal Exhibition in 1900.

Authentic know-how: a recipe that is passed on

Sold in the form of a notebook composed of detachable strips, the Armenian Paper is a long family story. Today it is Mireille Schvartz, great-granddaughter of Henri Rivier, who continues the tradition in the company, without having changed the formula. The operations are carried out by hand and span more than six months. Each manufacturing step is controlled by a laboratory manager. The solid benzoin resin is dissolved in alcohol for more than two months. Once liquefied, the scents are added, the composition of which remains a well-kept secret by the employees. The final solution is impregnated on a blotting-type paper which will deliver its odors by burning. After soaking and then drying, the leaves are placed in a press for one month. It is only then that the sheets of paper are cut and perforated to be put in the notebook, ready to be shipped. The little notebook, treated with love, will ultimately pass into the hands of 7 employees during its manufacture, some of whom have been present for more than 30 years.

A company that has modernized

Since 1885, the brand has evolved and now offers its products in more than 20,000 points of sale worldwide. 10% of annual production goes abroad, where the smells of the oldest natural air freshener are as popular as in France. The strip of paper burns without flame and gives off a smell of benzoin and vanilla and scents the room. Once folded into an accordion, you just have to light a piece of it and let it burn in a cup, like an incense stick. In 2006, perfumer Francis Kurkdjian of Armenian origin, recognized among other things for his creation of Le Mâle by Jean-Paul Gaultier, joined the company. From this collaboration was born a candle: Year of Armenia, whose fragrance retains the spirit of that of the notebook, to which are added ingredients from around the world. More info: www.papierdarmenie.fr Our practical creative leisure videos