Category: 2012

Imaginary Authors Violet Trilogy

Perfumer Josh Meyer. Imaginary Authors’s stories read like the back covers of pulp stories that just might actually have been published. Setting is paramount and the stories live in a tarnished-golden post-WW II arcadia where privilege and ennui are counter-balanced. They play with the fantasies of looking to the past. They offer an era of end-stage bucolic dreams, planes, fast…

Oriza L. Legrand (redux)

Oriza L. Legrand was relaunched in 2012. The rights to the brand were by acquired by perfumer Hugo Lambert and Frank Balaiche who apparently sought out the records and artifacts of the original house. The line relaunched with a number of perfumes based on formulae from the late 19th and early 20th centuries, though the original brands (Oriza and L.…

Slumberhouse Sova, 2012

Slumberhouse perfumer Josh Lobb has said that he doesn’t work with topnotes. Most of his perfumes smell layered, as if materials with similar consistencies or densities were creating a ‘wall of scent.’ Materials meet each other head to head on a level playing field. The democracy of materials urges you to find your own understanding of the perfumes without being…

Maison Francis Kurkdjian Oud, 2012

Oud perfumes are the new “orientals”.  Like their early 20th century predecessors, their fantasy/reality ratio is sky-high. They are less overtly culturally offensive, but in terms of authenticity, they are just as much a bill of goods. Francis Kurkdjian avoided the pitfall of attempting to mimic Arabic style. Instead, he treated oud like any other centerpiece note in western traditional…

Imaginary Authors The Soft Lawn, 2012

  Perfumer Josh Meyer. I am suspicious—make that incredulous—of storytelling in perfumery. The minute the exposition or the plot commences, I tune out. Perfume evokes ideas and states, and reflects trains of thought that no other art-form can. Trying to make perfumes tell stories reminds me of those tiny dogs in circus acts, dressed in clown-like costumes, jumping up and…

Fruity-floral flankers: Robert Piguet Petit Fracas, 2012

Image source unknown. The range of opinions on the reformulation of classic perfumes usually alternates between a sighing, “It ain’t what it used to be, kid.” and a howling, “They’ve RUINED it!” By all accounts, Guichard is credited with saving the Piguet perfumes by reformulation and maintaining the outstanding quality of the Germaine Cellier icons.  Quite a coup.  So, who…

Xerjoff Mamluk, 2012

  (photo Daily Mail UK. Daniela Rossell/Greene Naftal) Perfumer Chris Maurice. Xerjoff Mamluk is a perfume that I never would have found on my own. I’ll admit that I have ignored the brand, dismissing it as yet another overpriced line of finery gone amuck. There are too many perfumes in the line and they are ludicrously expensive. There are too…

Parfums MDCI Chypre Palatin, 2012

Perfumer Bertrand Duchaufour. International Fragrance Association (IFRA) restrictions on materials have made the chypre the bellwether in the reformulation debate.  Limiting the quantity of oakmoss that may be used and the type of bergamot allowed, the IFRA have knocked out two legs of the chypre tripod.  The limitations  have pushed perfumers to reconsider composition and materials-producers to search for novel…

Naomi Goodsir Cuir Velours, 2012

Perfumer Julien Rasquinet Cuir Velours suffers from the same malady as its sibling, Bois d’Ascèse.  The problem isn’t the fragrance, it’s the strategy. So let’s get the perfume out of the way.  It’s a waxy, fruity leather.  Less soapy than Serge Lutens Daim Blond, more spiced than Robert Piguet’s revived Visa.  A pretty fruit/leather that smokes and drinks.  Very nice,…