Category: Chanel

Chanel and Mugler Flankers, 2016. Order and Chaos.

(image School of Permaculture) Chanel No 5 l’Eau, perfumer Olivier Polge. Thierry Mugler Angel Muse, perfumer Quentin Bisch. Chanel No 5 and Thierry Mugler Angel are two of the most popular and commercially successful French perfumes in history.  As with any fashion house that has a ‘signature’ perfume, the product is both a source of steady income and the face…

Why I’m Wearing Cristalle Today

There is a succinctness to Cristalle that appeals to me.  It makes me think about syntax and tense in language. The past is perfect, the present is subjunctive and the future is conditional. My relationship to time has everything to do with the language I speak, English, which favors an analytical/logical view of dividing time. Preterite, pluperfect, present, conditional, anterior,…

Chanel Coromandel, 2007

  Perfumer Jacques Polges. A house like Chanel has to play a few different angles at once if they want to sell their products. With Cormandel they tie together a few different narratives that target a number of key demographics simultaneously. It’s an odd dance that Coromandel performs seamlessly.  Coromandel is a Hippy Patchouli and it’s an Old Lady Perfume. It’s for…

Chanel Cuir de Russie, 1924 (2007)

(Image lifted from Katerina Plotnikova) Perfumer Ernest Beaux. 1924. Reformulation, Jacques Polge. 2007. Most of what has been written on classical perfumery falls into three categories: the description, the tribute and the complaint, also known as anger passing for nostalgia.   Take Chanel no 5: • The description: Soapy. Bubbly. Old Lady perfume. Flowery. Feminine.   • The tribute: The…

Chanel Bleu, 2010

  (image Nadja Benderfor Dansk Magazine, Fall 2013) Perfumer Jacques Polge Until the 1980s Chanel’s strategy for men’s fragrance was simple: good taste. 1929’s Eau de Cologne and 1955’s superlative chypre Pour Monsieur were conservative fragrances, but they demonstrate the brand’s commitment to fundamentals and flawless execution. Chanel rewrote the rules of men’s perfumery in the 1980s with an emphasis on rich,…

Chanel 31 Rue Cambon, 2007

Perfumer Jacques Polge Discussion of the state of the chypre in 2007 included a lot of hazy, cautious terminology. The faux-chypre, the neo-chypre, the nu-chypre. 31 Rue Cambon was Chanel’s perfectly judged entry in the swarming chypre-but-not-really sub-gengre and to give credit where it’s due, 31 Rue Cambon actually does conjure the shape of a chypre. The perfume takes advantage of a…

digging (into) vintage: Chanel Antaeus, 1981

Perfumers Jaques Polge, François Demachy. Chanel Antaeus was my first perfume. I don’t remember who gave it to me, but I didn’t choose it myself. Looking back, my touchstones in perfume were Patou Joy, Lanvin Arpège, Dior Eau Sauvage and Paco Rabanne pour Homme. The first two my mother had, and introduced me to classical perfumery. I would sniff them out of the bottle and relish them.  I…