Thursday, 29 June 2017

Stepping Over To The Other Side - Chandler Burr On You Or Someone Like You


A double-whammy for you today, you lucky, lucky people. Over on Basenotes (click here), you can read my interview with Etienne De Swardt of Etat Libre D'Orange, conducted at the London launch of the new You Or Someone Like You. And below, you'll find highlights of a recent correspondence with one of the scent's co-creators, none other than Chandler Burr, author of The Emperor Of Scent as well a novel called You Or Someone Like You, on which this new fragrance is based.

Quick tip: I'd say you ought to read the Basenotes piece before you read this one. And for my review of You Or Someone Like You, please click here.

Enjoy!

--

Persolaise: As someone whose role in the perfumery industry has been that of critic and commentator, what was it like stepping behind the scenes to develop a perfume? Did you gain new insights into the creation process? Did you find yourself developing a greater (or lesser!?) appreciation of some aspects of the system?

Chandler Burr: Absolutely I have a greater appreciation for what Helen Murphy, Karyn Khoury, and other creative directors do. It was interesting and perhaps slightly surreal to actually be doing what for over a decade I've watched, documented -- for The New Yorker inside Hermès and for the New York Times with Sarah Jessica Parker most extensively -- for over a decade. It was pretty nerve wracking at the time. "This mod or that one? What do I choose? Wait, why the f*** can't I even smell the difference? Calm down, just smell them tomorrow. Ah, now the difference is clear -- but still, which one should I choose?" I ask Caroline Sabas, the perfumer, to try two things; she and I then both agree they don't work. She gives me an "OK, genius, what do you want to do now?" look. But when it works, it's just awesome.


Monday, 26 June 2017

Is It For Girls Or For Boys? - Persolaise Is Back With The Perfume Pros


Here comes the second of the videos I made with the Perfume Pros, and this time, they had something rather devious up their sleeves... but I'll let them explain in their own words, so hit Play and enjoy. If you'd rather watch the video on the YouTube site, please click here.

And if you'd like a link to the first video, here it is.

Persolaise

Friday, 23 June 2017

Persolaise Review: Ylang Ylang from E Coudray (2016) + Initial Thoughts On The Perfume Exhibition At Somerset House


Usually, by the time I get around to writing about a limited edition release, it's as hard to find as a shred of maturity in a Quentin Tarantino movie. So for all I know, Coudray's glorious Ylang Ylang is now conspicuous by its absence in perfumeries and is doing the rounds of the auction sites and the scent-swap communities. Nevertheless, I must bring it to your attention. A re-working of the brand's own Fetiche from 1978, it's the sort of composition that reduces cynical critics to gibbering wrecks and renders us speechless. "Perfumery must look to the future," we tend to say, "there's no point dwelling on the past, we can't keep expecting old brands to produce the sort of thing they made decades ago." But then along comes a retro beauty like this one, and we're forced to scuttle into a corner like toddlers, waiting to be served a portion of our own high-and-mighty words.

Thursday, 22 June 2017

Monday, 19 June 2017

The Zest Of Life - Persolaise On Colognes In The Scented Letter


The latest issue of The Scented Letter - the award-winning magazine of The Perfume Society - contains a piece by yours truly on the current revival of the eau de cologne. With contributions from Christine Nagel, Andy Tauer and Roja Dove, the piece aims to explain why this centuries-old composition is enjoying a resurgence in popularity at this moment in time.

As The Scented Letter is available only to members of The Perfume Society, I can't reveal much more about the article, except to say that it also includes a run-down of a few of my favourite colognes, some of which I've described as follows:

Coiled springs of energy waiting to be unleashed, like scented sprinters soaring towards the finish line.
A feast of citrus blossoms, filled with the hopes, dreams and passions of honeymoon vows.
Clocks slow down. Pulses relax. The globe slips into a siesta gear. And the jolly grapefruit just keeps grinning.

If that's enough to whet your appetite and you aren't already a member of the Society, please click here.

Persolaise

Friday, 16 June 2017

Persolaise Sixty Second Scents: You Or Someone Like You from Etat Libre D'Orange (Caroline Sabas; 2017)


The people at Etat Libre D'Orange have just released another one of their collaboration scents - this time created together with Chandler Burr - and here's my Sixty Second Scents review of it. To watch it on the YouTube site, please click here.

By the way, stay tuned for extended interviews with both Burr and Etienne De Swardt of ELDO.

Persolaise

Wednesday, 14 June 2017

Knowing How To Seduce - Interview With Nathalie Feisthauer On Basenotes

image: Basenotes

At the recent London launch of Aedes De VenustasPelargonium, I managed to interview its creator, Nathalie Feisthauer (Eau Des Merveilles, Honour Man, Putain Des Palaces). Our lively conversation - which covered all sorts of topics from Sophia Grojsman's seduction strategies to the composition of Merveilles - is featured in my latest piece for Basenotes. Please click here to read it.

Persolaise

Monday, 12 June 2017

Father's Day Inspiration - Persolaise Joins The Perfume Pros On YouTube


A short while ago, I was honoured to be invited by the Perfume Pros to join them for a series of videos on their YouTube channel about masculine perfumery. The first of our efforts has now been published, so I'd be delighted if you could take the time to watch it.

If you'd prefer to view it on the YouTube site, please click here.

Persolaise

Friday, 9 June 2017

Perfume Mini-Reviews From Twitter: January to March 2017 [part 2]


Part 2 of my January to March 2017 Twitter mini-review round-up. For part 1, please click here.

Myrrh & Tonka from Jo Malone (Mathilde Bijaoui; 2016)*
Latter comes across as a fuzzy lavender; the former as brown, orange-y baked apples. A shoulder shrug in a bottle.

Baiser Fou from Cartier (Mathilde Laurent; 2017)*
Strange berries and forest fruit over bitter-honey florals and stinging citruses. Whiff of lipstick. Crimson-hued.

Arbolé Arbolé from Hiram Green (Hiram Green; 2016)**
Is it soapy leaves or sweet bubbles floating on a lily pond? Chestnuts? 80s deodorant? It's fun trying to decide.

Thursday, 8 June 2017

Is There Too Much Perfume - Persolaise In Issue 2 of Tauer Mag

image: Tauer Mag

Thanks to my age and background, I have strong memories of 1980s Communist Poland. During those constraining times, if you wanted to buy a car - assuming you had enough money and you'd somehow managed to get yourself on the 18+ month waiting list - the choice was simple. You went for a Fiat 126p, the tinny, two-door, 1970s-born successor to the Fiat 500, with the 'p' at the end of the model number indicating that it was built east of the Iron Curtain. Or you could have a 125p, which gave you two, whole, additional doors. Or, if you were being really reckless with the family fortune, you could order a Polonez, the hatchback which once earned a spot on Jeremy Clarkson's list of the worst vehicles ever. And that was pretty much it. One out of three. Don‘t like any of them? Catch the bus.

I'm delighted to announce that the latest issue of Tauer Mag from Andy Tauer features another contribution from yours truly: a piece considering the question of whether we have too much perfume. The magazine also contains an interview with Lizzie Ostrom about her work on the upcoming perfume exhibition at Somerset House, as well as an account of one of Andy's trips to the US. It's available only in print form; please click here for more info.

Persolaise

Tuesday, 6 June 2017

Scent Of A Bride - Persolaise On Feelunique... & In The Latest Cosmopolitan!

image: Feelunique

My latest piece for Feelunique tackles the topic that always comes up when May sweeps into June: the perfect perfume for a bride. To see my recommendations, please click here.

And on an entirely different note, a couple of quotes from yours truly are to be found within the latest issue of UK's Cosmopolitan in a piece by Lucy Partington about affordable, high-quality scents. You'll find it a few pages after the bare bums. Rush to your nearest corner shop now.

Persolaise

Friday, 2 June 2017

Persolaise Review: Rose Royale from Nicolaï (Patricia De Nicolaï; 2017)


Perfumery is often an exercise in minor variations. Pick a familiar tune. Give it a subtle twist. Change the tempo. And voila: you've ended up with something that manages to be both comforting, comprehensible and accessible without seeming like a complete clone of all that has come before. Of course, as time passes, such variations are more difficult to accomplish: how many new ways are there going to be of saying 'amber' or 'jasmine' or 'musk'? Patricia De Nicolaï is clearly unafraid of such olfactory challenges, because the subject of her latest effort is another one of those super-ubiquitous scent materials: rose.

Thursday, 1 June 2017

Luxury Perfumes - Persolaise On Fashionbeans

image: Fashionbeans

Male grooming expert and award-winning writer Lee Kynaston has just published a piece on Fashionbeans about 'luxury' perfumes for men. It features a few contributions from me, so if you'd like to read it, please click here.

Persolaise

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