L’Orchestre Parfum – the ‘mix tape’ you can smell & listen to…

L’Orchestre Parfum harmonise perfumers and musicians to create fragrances ‘to smell and listen to.’ We just know they’re going to strike a chord with you…

We talk of perfumers ‘composing’ a fragrance, using ‘harmonic’ ‘notes’ and ‘accords’. Traditionally, a perfumer would arrange their fragrant ingredients according to ‘top, middle and base notes’, on a ‘perfumer’s organ’. We explored the long history of Music and Fragrance in The Scented Letter Magazine, and L’Orchestre Parfum are a niche perfume house that really turns up the musical inspiration to eleven…

All of the fragrances evoke the central instrument associated with particular styles of world music, with L’Orchestre‘s founder, Pierre Guguen, visiting the workshops of the artisans who create the instruments – smelling the types of wood and materials they use and, wherever possible, then getting perfumers to echo these in the notes of the final scent.

 

 

Everything L’Orchestre do has a musical inspiration, so instead of merely creating a set of samples, they wanted to produce a kind of ‘Mix Tape’ – a Discovery Set of six fragrances – which comes with a QR code to scan, so you can sniff and listen simultaneously – the perfect way to experience their greatest fragrant hits and try them on your own skin (while listening to the beautiful music at home).

Each of the fragrances dances to its own individual rhythm, and we feel certain that at least one of them will strike a very personal chord with you.

Simply click on the name of the scents to be whisked to the musical accompaniments

ARABIC

Thé Darbouka eau de parfum, composed by perfumer Amelie Bourgeois and interpreted by Nicolas Leroy, evokes a Sahara desert dawn coloured by the nomadic rhythm of a darbouka, a goblet drum that has been around for thousands of years. Thé Darbouka is an elusive unisex sweet and spicy fragrance with main notes of bergamot, caraway, candied fruits, immortelle, oud, cocoa and styrax.

TECHNO

Bouquet Encore eau de parfum, composed by perfumer Pierre-Constantin Guéros and interpreted by POPOF with Animal & Me, evokes irresistible techno waves, a fluorescent rhythm in black light with collective adrenaline surging. It is a sublime ultraviolet bouquet of tubéreuse and jasmine amplified by explosive timut pepper. Irresistible Madagascan vanilla, ambroxan and sumptuous musks reinforce the addiction of this euphoric mix. Sensual, carnal and addictive, Bouquet Encore is a narcotic, unisex floral fragrance.

HOUSE

Electro Limonade eau de parfum, composed by perfumer Nathalie Feisthauer and interpreted by NIID, takes you to a terrace overlooking the Mediterranean Sea at sunset, with a ‘chill out’ cocktail in hand. A perfect mix where the fresh essences of lemons, clementines and Italian bergamot dance alongside a mint ‘canaille’ and cocktail bubbles. Rhubarb and orange blossom lead you into a night where the groove is hovering over amber wood bass, incense and Haitian vetiver. A fizzy, sparkling and aromatic electronic unisex fragrance that accompanies you until the early hours.

FLAMENCO

Flamenco Néroli eau de parfum, composed by perfumer Anne-Sophie Behaghel and interpreted by Mathias Berchadsky, evokes the gardens of the Alcazar Palace in Seville where an evening walk is guided by the subtle arpeggios of a flamenco guitar. Flamenco Néroli is a luminous unisex citrus-woody fragrance with main notes of néroli, bergamot, bigarade, ginger, jasmine, Virginian cedar and Atlas cedar.

CONTEMPORARY

Piano Santal eau de parfum, composed by perfumer Jean Jacques and interpreted by Edouard Ferlet, evokes white sheets and somnolent skin scents in a woody, surrealist, musical cathedral. A white woody dream, languorous, pheromonal and milky, it is a mystical moment and unforgettable movement between dream and reality. Piano Santal is a unisex fragrance with main notes of white sandalwood, cedarwood, white musks, heated skin, bergamot, ambroxan, warm milk and caraway.

JAZZ

Rose Trombone eau de parfum, composed by perfumer Anne-Sophie Behaghel and interpreted by Nicolas Benedetti, evokes a Jazz Club in Harlem, New York, where magnetic glances are exchanged during a torrid trombone solo. Rose Trombone is a sensual, clean and aldehydic unisex fragrance with main notes of rose, ‘clean’ notes, pear, vanilla, sandalwood, white musk and rum.

 

L’Orchestre Parfum Mix Tape Vol. 1 Discovery Set £25 for all SIX samples.

By Suzy Nightingale

Atelier Cologne eFestival with Charli XCX – get your FREE ticket!

Get set to enjoy the Atelier Cologne eFestival with Charli XCX: 9pm on the 29th of October!

One of the many things to have been cancelled or postponed this year are the various music fetivals and live performances we so love in the U.K. – but the fabulous fragrance house Atelier Cologne are collaborating with the British recording artist Charlotte Emma Aitchison (professionally known as Charli XCX) for a FREE online eFestival to be enjoyed in the comfort of your own home!

Celebrating the recent launch of Atelier Cologne Love Osmanthus, Charli will be performing (suitably enough) some love songs LIVE on Atelier Cologne’s website, at 9pm this Thursday, 29th October 2020.

 

 

Charli is one of three artists who’ll be performing around the world, and you can travel right to the shows from your sofa:

#ateliercolognefestival

‘Perfumes are just like a music song, when you press “play”, they have the power to make you travel in time and space in just one spray.

On October 29 and 30, a selection of international artists – Doja Cat, Charli XCX, Henry Lau and Videoclub – will perform, right from their home in Paris, Los Angeles including Séoul, only on ateliercologne.com, on replay for a 24H window only.

Get a chance to win a private access to meet the artist or unique hand signed bottle.’

 

 

We could certainly all do with some extra love (and fun!) in our lives right now, and music and fragrance are two of the most emotionally connective art forms we can engage our senses with.

Osmanthus also happens to be one of our very favourite fragrance notes here at The Perfume Society, and Atelier Cologne Love Osmanthus is perfect introduction to this stunning, so-versatile peachy-creamy (or even leathery and suede-like) scent. Here’s what we thought when we first sniffed Atelier Cologne’s version…

 

 

Atelier Cologne Love Osmanthus
The gender lines are well and truly blurred here, with a fragrance swirled with narcotic osmanthus that is pitched by Atelier Cologne as being ‘unisex’, and composed of 93% natural materials. (We’ve noted more and more than perfume houses are sharing with us the percentage of naturals in their blends.) Alongside peachy-creamy osmanthus, you’ll have your olfactory interested piqued first by lemon, with the new-pencil-case woodsiness of American cedarwood.
£55 for 30ml Cologne Absolue
feelunique.com

Whichever artist you choose to tune in to, we hope you’ll be reaching for your favourite fragrance to spray and play in fragrant harmony…

By Suzy Nightingale

Issey Miyake Fusion – make your own music on the nature-inspired drum machine!

The new Issey Miyake fragrance, Fusion d’Issey, has inspired an immersive and interactive experience created in partnership with The Perfume Shop, to celebrate the launch…

We’ve been banging our drum about the many ties between music and fragrance for years – in fact, we recently dedicated an entire issue of our magazine, The Scented Letter, to Music & Perfume  – so we’re delighted to see Issey Miyake showcasing Fusion in such an imaginative and multi-sensory way…

Sounds of Fusion is, they explain, ‘the first drum machine inspired by nature in Fusion, where users are invited to create their own music composition using the sounds of elements in Fusion.

 

 

The experience immerses into an interactive home page inviting users to take part in an intuitive and easy creative soundscape page where they can create their own unique piece of music.

Sounds of Fusion” offers a new playground for both novice and experienced music creators. It takes its roots in the popular organic and nature-inspired music genre.

The experience is composed of:

4 main themes inspired by nature: air / lava / water / stone sounds

8 different sounds representing the main themes, as different interpretations of each one

A play and pause button, there to start or stop the player

A record/share button allowing to download the composition when one’s done, and share it on different social media channels

The digital platform is live now and open to anyone who is keen to become his/her own music creator inspired by organic sounds.

Be inspired & share your Sound of Fusion!’

 

 

 

So, why not spritz your scent and get inspired to create your own track to share with friends online? With Issey Miyake you’re invited to ‘Dive at the heart of the elements where the strength of nature is expressed through images and for the first time… through sounds. Just listen: water flowing on rocks, wind blowing through leaves, boiling lava, crackling rocks…’

For those of you who’ve not managed to get your noses on the new fragrance yet, Fusion juxtaposes hot and cold, a fascinating exploration of the perfumer’s alchemy in conjuring coolness from citrus and coconut milk, the breeze of a solar-filled mineral accord (think sunlight sparkling on water). Earthiness exudes from the smooth sandalwood, while resinous patchouli provides the heat of the base.

 

Issey Miyake Fusion d’Issey £49 for 50ml eau de toilette
theperfumeshop.com

By Suzy Nightingale

Scenting the groove

With the Music & Perfume edition of The Scented Letter magazine hot off the press, we’re really feeling the harmony right now – and here, Amanda Carr explores the intriguing history of fragranced vinyl…

Vinyl is having something of a moment, with new record stores selling both vintage and new vinyl LPs opening in all the hippest of locations. Imagine our thrill, therefore, when we discovered that vinyl is often sold scented! From Madonna to Stevie Wonder, musicians have perfumed their vinyl grooves to enhance the listening experience.

Fragrances are often inspired by a good tune. The gorgeous Acqua di Parma Note Di Colonia collection springs to mind, with its appreciation of soaring operatic crescendos, artful preludes and glorious musical scores. On a more modern note, JUSBOX’s collection of fragrances honours musical genres: there’s Cheeky Smile, which celebrates Acid House, alongside Green Bubble, a scented ode to reggae (and yes, there are notes of marijuana in the accord). JUSBOX‘s vinyl-capped bottles can even be found for sale in an actual record shop, the delightful Olympic Studio Records in Barnes. (Disclosure: it’s owned by my husband – which is how I stumbled onto this story in the first place…)

Actually scenting the grooves is an inspired move. It’s no surprise the Queen of Pop, Madonna, dabbled with perfuming her tunes. First pressings of 1989’s ‘Like A Prayer’, were impregnated with the smell of frankincense and patchouli, reinforcing religious connections, along with song tracks such as ‘Oh Father’, and pictures of Madonna’s considerable crucifix jewellery collection. Our much-played copy of the album still carries a shadowy sillage of a rather good patchouli scent, although those earthy, incense vibes remind us more of dressing up and dancing till dawn at parties held in darkened basements rather than the cold stone and incense-heavy interiors of churches.

 

 

Stevie Wonder’s ‘Journey Through The Secret Life of Plants’, a title crying out for its own scent, was perfumed with a floral note on its release in 1979, although apparently stopped after reports that the scent – which fans of the record remember as a faint hint of rose – turned out not to be helping the quality of the sound. But technology has since improved considerably and scented vinyl continues to be pressed by modern artists. The Third Man record company, founded by uber-cool musician Jack White, bought its own vinyl factory in Detroit, where its produces top quality vinyl that is often scented. Karen Elson, ex-wife of Mr. White, released ‘The Ghost Who Walks’, in 2010, as a delicate peach coloured vinyl record which is also scented with the dewy aroma of softly sweet peach.

Less artful but still enthusiastically received by fans, the 30th anniversary ‘Ghostbusters: Stay Puft Edition’, a 12-inch double A-side single, released by Sony Music in 2014, was scented with marshmallow in tribute to the film’s giant Stay Puft marshmallow baddy. Singing along to Ray Parker Jr.’s catchy theme tune on one side and Run-DMC’s updated reboot on the other, could surely only be improved with wafts of sugary-sweet vanilla notes coming off the stylus. We can’t help thinking that other film soundtrack albums could use fragrance creatively to add to the sense of fun, for example wouldn’t ‘Mamma Mia’ be even more joyous to sing along to if it pumped out an olfactive scentscape of a sun drenched Greek island alongside the songs…?

With a different angle on the concept, Japanese fragrance house Shiseido once hired musician Hiroshi Noshimura to create a vinyl album entirely inspired by one of its fragrances as an innovative gift-with-purchase idea. The fragrance was called A.I.R (Air In Resort) so the album, which was steeped in the scent, was given the same name. The music complemented the green, forest notes of pine, earth and wood with a sound track of birdsong, the sea and field-based recordings of nature. Customers were were encouraged to listen to the record while appreciating the scent. It’s certainly a step up from the paper tester blotters we’re used to.

And artists, it seems, simply can not resist a scratch-n-sniff album cover. A quick chat on the super-informed Discogs forum, where music fans hang out to talk all things vinyl (there are many similarities between music and perfume fans) turned up a long list of album covers with scent-infused patches used to enhance the listening. The gold standard scented cover is unanimously agreed to be a 1972 release by The Raspberries, with a scratch-and-sniff sticker that smelled very convincingly of…yep, raspberries.

 

 

From Duran Duran’s limited edition ‘Perfect Day’ 7-inch single with its strawberry scented ice cream cone cover, to Spinal Tap’s The Majesty Of Rock album, with its scratch-and-sniff sleeve scented with Ye Olde Roast Beef Flavour, via Melanie’s ‘Garden In The City’ – where listeners were encouraged to rub the sticker to ‘release the magic of Melanie’s Garden’ – musicians clearly love to scent their songs.

We say: that makes for a great-smelling record collection. And we’d like to see more of this, please…!

By Amanda Carr

 

 

To get even further in the groove and explorethe links between music and scent, have a look at our print copy of the just-published Music & Perfume issue of The Scented Letter Magazine

• In Hitting All The Right Notes (above), Viola Levy looks at ways that modern perfumers use music to inspire their creations

• Ofactory consultant Pierre Aulas – who chose perfumery over a career as an opera singer – shares the secrets of his creative days in A Working Nose

• Scent gets social with Smellfie Day 2020, our celebration of International Fragrance Day – which had quite a different message in this strange year

Suzy Nightingale invites us to enjoy A Scented Symphony, discovering a perfume house with works with instruments, artisans and musicians

• And why note create your own scented playlist? In Listening to Scent, Persolaise invites us to sit back, relax, hit ‘play’

And of course, as usual, we bring you all the Latest Launches, news, events – and so much more!

 

We are now able to take orders for a limited run of printed copies of the magazine, priced £12.50 to our VIP Subscribers (£15 to non-VIPs). And remember: you can now also buy an annual print subscription to The Scented Letter (six issues), here

(NB Print copies are sent out approximately 10 days after each new issue of The Scented Letter appears on the website, so please bear with us. We work right up to the wire to make sure everything is truly newsworthy!)

And all that jazz… Fragrance writer’s musical talents raising money for charity

Stephan Matthews, is a fragrance writer and long-time friend of The Perfume Society, and of course a man who’s been obsessed with scent for many years, and he has revealed another talent: music!

Stephan got in touch with us after he saw the theme of our just-published Scented Letter magazine: Music & Perfume, commenting that there must be something musical and fragrant wafting in the air, as ‘…the timing of this is a little spooky! I’ve just rereleased my Jazz album from 2006 to raise money for NHS Charities Together.’

Stephan explains: ‘We’re all trying our best to support each other during these challenging times, but one of the areas that is still under so much pressure is the NHS. We have so much to thank them for, so I wanted to help in some small way.

Back in 2006, I released a successful jazz album called Call Me Irresponsible. It was only available as a CD (remember those?) and went out of print in 2010. I changed career and went back to my real name, swapping the acting business for the perfume industry, and the recording was archived.

 

 

Spending so much time at home recently gave me the chance to finally go through the last few boxes that were never opened when we moved and, in one of them, I found all of the original paperwork and masters.

So, after fourteen years and with the help of my original producer Richard Niles, Call Me Irresponsible is available to download and stream with all of the profits going to NHS Charities Together. It’s been great fun to revisit these recordings, and I can’t believe it was fourteen years ago!’

The recordings are now available to download or stream on iTunes, Apple Music, and Spotify.

We were hugely impressed, on listening, and with music and fragrance definitely filling the airwaves right now, it’s a great way to support NHS Charities Together – and the way this fragrance writer is helping – in such a toe-tapping, enjoyable way…

By Suzy Nightingale

Chanel perfumer Olivier Polge shares his musical passion

Chanel Perfumer, Olivier Polge, is a man imbued with many artistic passions. Perfumery, of course, but his first true love was actually music, and in an intriguing film we find out how he came to realise they shared the same language…

In the utterly gorgeous film, entitled ‘I am a Nose’, on Chanel’s official YouTube channel, perfumer Olivier Polge describes his childhood, and the passions his parents passed down to him.

Polge’s parents had met and fallen in love at perfumery school, and ‘I was four when my father became the nose of Chanel,’ Polge says, his words overlapping footage of him working, now the ‘nose’ of Chanel himself, and grainy, atmospheric and incredibly personal archive family films.

 

 

Describing the smells that dominate his childhood memories, above all else, it’s ‘the smell of turpentine in their friends’ studios.’ Enthusiastic artists, it might be expected that painting would transfer to young Olivier, along with the love of perfume, ‘but above fragrance and painting, music was my first passion,’ he admits.

Olivier came to realise that music and fragrance were two loves that entwined, without his even having made the connection. ‘When I was 20, I started learning the craft,’ he explains, ‘and I discovered that music and fragrance spoke the same language. I would have to compose and write formulas made of notes and accords.’

Watch the film right here and be carried away by the memories and music, yourself…

 

 

One can only imagine how nervous he must have been on being asked, as the ‘nose’ of Chanel, to ‘rewrite a contemporary version of No5…’ A sensation akin to a musician being asked to whip up a new version of Beethoven’s Fifth Symphony, perhaps? Whatever his feelings were, for me No.5 L’Eau is a mellifluous mingling of those aldehydes, now with a cedar and sandalwood hum in the base. It feels familiar but new all at once – a harmony of modernity and homage…

Chanel N°5 L’Eau, £113 for 100ml eau de toilette
Sun-drenched, thirst-quenching and filled filled with freshness, this is a beautiful modern play on the classic, with a fizz of aldehydes dancing on lemon, mandarin and orange atop a honeyed shimmer of jasmine and luminescent ylang ylang. As the opening chords drift away and the floral heart warms on the skin, a thrum of warm cedar and vetiver mellow to a harmonious trail of soft white musks. Quite simply: a virtuoso performance…
chanel.com

 

With the Music & Fragrance edition of The Scented Letter magazine hot off the press, we’re really feeling the harmony right now – click below to get your print edition here. VIP Club members, meanwhile, can download or read their digital edition online, absolutely free. International Digital Subscriptions are also available, so never fear if you’re overseas!

Whichever way you choose, we hope you’ll take some time to indulge your senses, and wish you a wonderfully fragrant musical journey…

By Suzy Nightingale

Daniel Sonabend’s 5 musical fragrances

London-based composer Daniel Sonabend today releases Scent Constellation – an album of ‘five musical fragrance creations’ based on Jason Bruges’ award-winning permanent installation at Le Grand Musèe du Parfum in Paris.

Music and fragrance have long been linked – we use the same language to describe and shape their creations, after all: we talk of ‘notes’, ‘accords’, and of course a perfumer may use an ‘organ’ to ‘compose’ their piece – this ‘instrument’ the very inspiration behind Daniel’s creative interpretation.

Daniel Sonabend. Photo by Michal Sulima

There’s a deeper connection, too, when we experience fragrance and music – no other art can move us in quite the same way as smelling a scent that suddenly whisks us, unbidden, to an overwhelmingly distinct emotion or memory; similarly, we cannot control our reaction to hearing a piece of music for the first time. Both of these cause instantaneous emotions we feel before we can logically process, as the hautingly beautiful, ethereal soundscapes Daniel has created for Scent Constellation, most certainly attest to.

Daniel was a guest speaker at the Art & Olfaction Scent Summit, which was held in London this year, describing the multi-sensory art piece, created by Jason Bruges Studio, in which he intriguingly portrays the very creation – and visceral perception – of perfume through sound.

Jason Bruges’ Scent Constellation at Le Grand Musèe du Parfums, Paris, where Daniel Sonabend’s music is played. Photo by James Medcraft

Experiencing Jason Bruges’ installation at Le Grand Musèe du Parfum, spectators see a ‘perfumer’s organ’ depicted by 200 optical prisms directly linking to 200 sounds, representing a fragrant palette of raw ingredients, from bergamot oil to synthetic musk and violet leaf. These musical notes react in the way a traditional perfume pyramid does: top notes fleetingly present, heart notes lingering longer and base notes providing a lasting emotion.

The ingredient sounds are then ingeniously ‘mixed’ together, creating 5 different perfume music compositions: Eau de Cologne, Oriental, Fougère, Floral and Chypre (see feature image at the top of the page). ‘In the museum, these olfactory mini-symphonies are harmoniously played out with light as each ingredient from the fragrance formula is triggered by a laser beam hitting the prism, then bouncing into and illuminating a glass flacon centre piece, bottling the final creation. A poetic audio-visual metaphor for the process of imagining new perfumes.’

Scent Constellation album artwork

During our How to Improve Your Sense of Smell workshops, we often ask people to imagine which instrument or piece of music they would liken to the scent they’re (blind) smelling, and you know what? They’re never lost for an answer. Our senses blur all the time, and it’s fascinating to really give in to the synaesthesia, sometimes.

Experience Daniel’s Scent Constellation album for yourself, below. You can also listen via Spotify, if you prefer. Whichever you choose, can you hear the fragrances, smell the music…?

Written by Suzy Nightingale

How artist Paul Schütze began his journey from paper to perfume

Before photographer, artist and musician Paul Schütze even dreamed of designing fragrances and launching his own line, his obsession with the oft-overlooked sense of smell was already apparent the moment you stepped in to the gallery…
In 2014 Schütze exhibited Silent Surface – a collection of photographs comprising books on fire and with missing words – within the fitting surroundings of an antiquarian bookshop. A central piece of a blackened book resting atop a plinth wafted an other-worldly aroma he’d sprayed the pages with and, under the lights the fragrance diffused to fill the space. The piece was called IN LIBRO DE TENERIS, and the majority of visitors asked if they could buy this inky, woody, book-ish scent (they couldn’t, it hadn’t been created to wear on skin, just as a one-off aroma to enhance the experience of the show) but from that moment, his fragrant fate was sealed.
From then, Paul went on to immerse himself in the world of perfume, working to design his very own trio of fragrances, all borne from olfactory memories of his extensive travels and the inherent artistic sense he has of interpreting the world around him.
Cirebon is a glowing citrus swathed in Tunisian orange blossom, inspired by Paul’s memory of a ‘… Night on the island of Java: by the edge of a lake; the perfumed sounds of a court gamelan orchestra drift across the water, hovering in the air like a constellation of shimmering insects,’ while Tears of Eros is an incense like no other, weaving a scent trail that takes you to ‘…The artist’s studio: Winter; incense from Kyoto’s Sanju Sangendo, a bowl of discarded clementine peel and a night blooming hyacinth; moonlit air from the open windows: these fragrances coalesce into a narcotic, heady, living incense.’ The last of the three so far – Behind the Rain – expands the beauty of mineralic petrichor (the smell that follows a downpour) with a trip to  ‘…An island in the Aegean: a sudden violent rainstorm: as the storm ends, the warmth of the emerging sun on bruised foliage coaxes waves of resinous fragrance that wash down onto our place of shelter under a stand of conifer trees.’

Fascinated to learn more of Paul’s fragrant travels, we asked him to guide us through the most evocative, his personal favourites, and the scents that always inspire him…
What is your first ‘scent memory’?
Chlorine: I have loved swimming in pools since I can remember. I do my best thinking while plowing up and down the lanes letting the world slip away. The huge pleasure of it is inextricably bound to the smell of chlorine. The faintest whiff and I’m transported
When did you decide you wanted to design your own perfume?
I’d always wanted to but it was only four years ago that I realised it might be possible.
What are your five favourite smells in the world?
Well, chlorine – obviously, the interior of the Sanju Sangendo in Kyoto, the flesh of a perfect white peach, our dog Gilbert’s head smells delicious and finally the epicenter of Queen Mary’s Rose Garden (Regent’s Park) in the middle of Summer: the most dizzying, hallucinatory storm of perfumes imaginable.
What’s the worst thing you ever smelled. (Honestly!)
Red Bull: utterly nauseating! I have moved decks on the bus to avoid it.
What is the fragrance you wish you’d created?
Sycomore from Chanel’s Les Exclusives series
Do you feel (like us) that this is one of the most exciting times in fragrance history, because of the creativity being expressed by perfumers? Why do you think that is?
I think we are in a time of intense activity both in commercial perfumery and in the outer edges of experiment (Sisal Tolas and Peter De Cupere). Also because people are realizing that the classical way is not the only way. I think there are parallels with the birth of contemporary music and with visual abstraction.
If you could have created a fragrance for a historical figure, who would it be?
If I might be allowed a fictional historical figure then Des Esseintes the protagonist in Huysmans À rebours.
What’s the first fragrance you bought. And the first bought for you…?
The very first fragrance I bought was Grey Flannel. The first bought for me was Tabac Blonde.
Do you have a favourite bottle design?

I recently made a unique, triple strength version of Cirebon for my partner Chris’s 50th Birthday. I gave it to him in a very beautiful antique, stoppered bottle with a hinged gold cap. It sits in a leather sarcophagus-like case (see photo, below.)


How many perfumes might you be working on, at one time?
Depends, I prefer to work on only one but if I have commissions then it can be three or four at a time.
Does your nose ever ‘switch off’?
It does. Then I know to turn my attentions elsewhere. You can’t force things.
How long, roughly, does it take to create one of your fragrances?
The fastest was a single day the longest so far has been a little over a year.
Is designing a fragrance ‘visual’ for you, as well as something that happens in the nose/brain of the perfumer? If so, in what way…? Is a mood-board helpful?
No, barely visual at all. Very musical though. I often find myself confusing sounds and smells. I listen to music while I work and it is chosen with infinite care. I find time spent in certain architectural spaces hugely helpful in getting a bead on the “right” feel for a fragrance.
What can each of us do to enhance our appreciation of fragrance?
Smell everything. Stop deciding how things smell by merely looking at them. Grab things and burry your face in them. That goes for people too!
What is your best tip for improving a person’s sense of smell?
Again, just smell things: never buy food without taking the time to smell it extravagantly. Never begin to eat until you have savored the aromas of your food. If you find yourself in a lift, close your eyes and imagine the other people from the aromas surrounding you. Open windows and inhale. Never walk past plants, flowering or otherwise without taking the time to sniff them. Never, never worry about how nuts all this makes you seem!
If you had one fragrance note that you love above all others, what would that be?
Vetiver.
We couldn’t leave it there, because we particularly wanted to know about two unusual notes used in the fragrances, and so Paul explained why they are used.

  • Green Incense: I’m obsessed with incense both as a ritual item and as a family of smells. I love the idea of an incense which is living, green, not-yet-burnt.
  • Tamarind: Wonderful aroma which hits you in the taste buds as much as the nose. I can’t smell it without my mouth watering. It has a phenomenological impact on the body which I find really seductive.

With such instantly evocative and unique fragrances to launch the range, we can’t wait to see (and sniff) where Paul Schütze will take us next…
Paul Schütze parfums £135 for 50ml eau de parfum
Buy them at Liberty
Written by Suzy Nightingale

Aesop home fragrances: formulated to stir the senses…

Aesop have fragrance at their heart, but always linked to the efficacy and wellbeing benefits of their produtcs. Never a brand to slap a nice smelling scent in for the sake of it, they’ve now launched a trio of home fragrances created by perfumer, Barnabé Fillion, with the premise that Istros, Cythera and Olous will ‘…transform the home, redefining the physical space that surrounds us.’
Each of the room sprays has been commissioned with a bespoke musical track composed to evoke the notes of the scents themselves, and with such a connection between music and perfume – we speak of musical and fragrance ‘accords’, the ‘notes’ of a scent, a perfumer arranging their ingredients on an ‘organ’ – it’s an harmonious match, indeed.

Aesop say: ‘Just as each Aromatique Room Spray unfurls in a melody of top, heart and base notes, composer and musician Jesse Paris Smith has created three distinctive tracks to narrate the shifting journey.’
Istros
A union of enlivening florals and smoky tobacco, underscored by the embrace of sandalwood.
Istros is a scent of what has been left behind: a street baked by heat during the day, cooled at night; tendrils of tobacco smoke long dispersed; bazaars that bear the etchings of commerce, commotion and carnival. But more than this, it is a communion with the creative spirits who have journeyed through – an energy distilled from their traces.
Cythera
A veil of geranium and incense, lent symmetry by woody patchouli and the warmth of myrrh.
Cythera conjures a moonlit garden as vespertine flowers relax their petals and nocturnal animals emerge from sleep. Drawing us into the present, an atmosphere of reverence is stirred as darkness returns. The air in this space holds a delicate aroma woven with the memory of the day, and the promise of the evening ahead.
Olus
A blend of citrus botanicals, balanced by breaking waves of cedar and the refreshing spice of cardamom.
Just as words are born of our breath, Olous rouses an exhalation of clipped, green aroma. Boundless as it is, nature makes its presence felt inside the home – stillness ensues. The environment is redefined to an elemental time, when life was all silence – pleasantly devoid of the babble of phone chatter, or the burring hum of the mechanical.
You can listen to the soundtracks on the Aesop website, and we highly recommend taking a few minutes to sit down, spritz and chill to the scents…

Aesop Aromatique Room Sprays, £37 for 200ml
Buy them at Aesop
Written by Suzy Nightingale
 

Rihanna's KISS seals the deal with new fragrance launch…

Rihanna is known for her unashamedly – and utterly contemporary – take on femininity in all its forms, within her award-winning music, of course, her personal and much-copied style and in the medoum of fragrance with her ever-expanding perfume wardrobe. Now the inimitable RiRi is sending you scented kisses with the launch of her latest fragrant offering and the launch of Kiss by Rihanna.
Marking the third fragrance in the performer’s namesake RiRi collection, Kiss is presented in a blue-tinted bottle that was, we are told, designed by Rhianna herself. A lady who likes to keep her finger on the pulse of what’s happening, then, the juice inside is described as ‘Mesmerizing, whimsical, and unexpected, the dynamic addition to the RiRi fragrance trilogy is flirtatious, feminine and lighthearted.’
Rihanna Kiss ad
But what does it actually smell like? Well expect a modern, white floral deliberately overdosed with luscious neroli, juicy plum and the waxy freshness of freesia.In the heart we have the delicacy of orange blossom infused with a buxom gardenia and the feminine frills of peony, all rounded out with a cashmere-soft landing of woody musk.
Kiss by Rihanna small
Kiss by Rihanna from £23 for 30ml eau de parfum
Exclusively at Superdrug from the 18th January 2017, nationwide from 1st February 2017
Written by Suzy Nightingale