In life there are definitely rites of passage, one being when a parent hands down a lighter from ST Dupont to their child. An heirloom worthy of kings the ST Dupont brand, a French company, manufactures beautifully crafted luxury pens and lighters, alongside leather goods designed to stand the test of time and carry the continuity of the company that started out in 1872.
Vintage ST Dupont lighter passed down from father to son with thanks to Andrew for the image
Created by Mr. Dupont, with his aim was to become the go-to luxury accessories brand for aristocrats, alongdside the rich and famous. They achieved this at the end of 19th and then through the 20th century – and from the initial personalised travel trunks, they also began to create belts, cufflinks, then lighters and then later, luxury pens, which stemmed from customer demand. Simon Tissot-Dupont evolved his brand from a small family business to a global empire by creating luxury goods with heritage, storytelling and excellence of craft. Today, Alain Crevet – CEO of S.T Dupont, now oversees an empire which still supplies the highest end of luxury crafted goods. This includes hand luggage, pens, lighters cufflinks and small leather goods.
They are extremely well known for their lighters, which are distinctive as well as instantly recognisable. The company’s first serially-produced lighter was created in 1941 and was made of aluminium, as brass was used as a strategic metal restricted for war purposes only. However, from 1958 to 1963, all lighters were constructed of 18k solid gold with 3% brass. The brand also sells accessories made out of real leather, in forms of bags, card holders and wallets. In 1953, André Dupont created his first handbag, the “Riviera” as a limited edition from exotic skins with the wonderful Actress Audrey Hepburn being the first client.
Although the business started out by crafting travelling trunks it then moved into small items at the request of its clientele. For example Humphrey Bogart commissioned ST Dupont to create a travel bag for him whilst Jackie Kennedy Onassis asked to have a pen to match her initialled lighter. The list goes on from the Queen of England to the Maharajah of Patiala so the list of esteemed customers is quite impressive, yet its also a brand for those who are connoisseurs of quality, design and elegance, hence the earlier mention desire to pass down treasured items from family member to family member.
Alongside celebrity customers they created have many famous collaborations with the likes of The Rolling Stones, Marvel, Star Wars along countless others including even James Bond franchise! The company has the honour of being awarded the “Entreprise du Patrimoine Vivant” label, a mark of recognition by the French State for master craftsmanship, to reward French firms for the excellence of their traditional and industrial skills
While the brand in 2017 is noticeably one of the finest luxury brands, just over 10 years ago the brand was truly suffering. In 2006, the company was on the brink of filing for bankruptcy, however, they soon realised that reviewing the very essence of their brand, its heritage and what it stood for, meant they could re-market themselves and in doing so S T Dupont stayed true to the family business by focusing on perfecting accessories and leather goods. With ceramic coating on their new lighters, and a unique steel nib on their pens, this brand oozes luxury and with almost 150 years heritage and a very rosy future.
Although almost 150, the brand still boasts a lucrative and elite customer base, with distribution spanning Asia, Europe the US and the Middle East, and solid partnerships with luxury retail giants. The brand is always coming up with new collaborations and items, including one in to be released in October. You can find that, and any other information about the brand on their site.