There’s a very odd thing going on out there in the world of perfume: niche fragrance prices are rising. This year the cost of a 50ml. bottle is well over a hundred dollars US. In fact, and in the interest of consumers, it’s worth pointing out that this hike comes at a time when many commodity prices are falling, natural gas, metals, pork, corn, etc, and when inflation in the US is running at or below 1.7% (the Federal Reserve’s target is 2%). So, why are perfume prices up so much? Is it demand, is it production costs, is it the dollar/euro exchange rate*, is it something that someone outside of the business can’t calculate, or are we…just being suckered for the sake of fashion? Continue reading
The day in question would be one of those puddle jumpers of late spring, you know, umbrella and Wellington boot weather. This has been our lot for weeks on the eastern coast of the US, where the spring has been tardy and cold.
This unexpected weather has played hob with my usual perfume choices for this time of year. Normally, I would have cracked my Carons, and it would have been a Bellodgia fest with a bit of En Avion and Narcisse Blanc to break up the rose/carnation cabal. That is what it might have been like. However it’s been too raw for all those scents, and frequently too wet. I kept Coty’s l’Aimant in rotation, as the sole floral, because that smells dry and slightly peachy, a comforting perfume for cold, raw days. Continue reading
Wouldn’t it be nice to be in Cesena, Italy on the 17th of November? Then you could go to the Scent Bar and have a true synesthetic experience all day, because Hilde Soliani is going to be there along with Massimo Bonini and his new caffeine based creations (he is the owner of Torrefazione Lady) and the culinary offerings of a rising chef Daniele Lunghi, and after dark music composed expressly for the Hilde Soliani brand by Valter Malosti and the sound designer Gup Alcaro, and basically I would so blow the state of New Jersey just for the evening. Not that I have anything against Jersey, mind you, just well, with all that on offer, and all the grief we’ve had here lately, yeah, basically I would blow the joint.* Continue reading
Sounds like a Project Runway challenge, no? The gourmand scent category has been so successful of recent years that it has branched out into all sorts of unexpected directions. Those with more sophisticated tastes may deplore it, but then, the perfume conventions of previous decades were just as hard to understand later, e.g. the 70’s musks and the 90’s non-perfume perfumes.
At least candy cannot be confused with BO as in the former case, and you can tell that someone has made an effort to wear perfume in the first place, something you can’t tell in the latter one. Continue reading
Recently I saw a video clip from one of the Italian scent fairs in Florence featuring an interview with Hilde Soliani, the proprietress of her own line of perfumes. She was asked if she ever took the tastes and preferences of her probable customers into account when creating a new perfume?
No never, she said.
Really? In the test marketed universe of the twenty first century, she never paid attention to what perfume buyers want? Well, having smelled about three of her perfumes now, I am inclined to believe her. Continue reading
This is my way of expressing a piece of advice I came across in an old perfume book. The Book of Perfume (Barille and Laroze, 1995) suggests ways in which to keep some aesthetic order in your perfume collection.
The one that intrigued me was to find trios of perfumes and colognes that worked together in a pleasing way, complimenting one another, not hissing and dissing each other the way the various casts of housewives do on reality TV shows. A little harmony, the authors seemed to feel, would go a long way to improving life in the perfume cabinet.
Alrighty, I was up for an experiment and what exactly did they suggest? Continue reading