Tag Archives: Aqua Allegorias

Leaves of Licorice

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Male_Luna_Moth,_Megan_McCarty141.jpgLicorice doesn’t seem like a boon companion of green leaves and herbs but some fragrances have set the pair up together.  As matches go this one seems more like optimism than common sense, but it pays to remember that licorice itself has a background in the herb garden.

The perfume from Bielhlparfumkunstwerke PC 01 is rather like that.  Since the packaging is so clean and minimalist you receive no clue from the line what you’re getting when you crack a sample vial, and so the perfumes take their exits onto the air with no fan fare and no preconceptions.  You have no idea whether the perfumer was a realist or a romantic, evoking an experience or simply bottling an abstraction.  Continue reading

Guerlain Originals

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Immeuble,_68_avenue_des_Champs-%C3%89lys%C3%A9es,_Paris_8e_009.JPGThe publishing mogul/poet Felix Dennis is blunt about it: “The problem with the great idea is that it concentrates the mind on the idea itself…But unless the idea is executed efficiently and with panache and originality, then it doesn’t matter how great the idea is, the enterprise will fail.”

It’s a nifty piece of wisdom, and has always struck me in regard to the grand old firm of Guerlain, whose business model for many years was less to create than to perfect.

You didn’t wear Guerlains for their startling uniqueness, because almost nothing of Guerlain’s was unique.  You wore them for the quality of the materials used and for the careful handling of  those ingredients.  Guerlain’s execution was what shone through.  The origin of the idea was not important. Caron might create, Coty certainly did, even Jean Patou from time to time produced creations, but Guerlain guerlainified, and the results were charming, very high quality, with a delicacy all their own. Continue reading