Monday, July 19, 2010

'Summer perfumes'

Everything is relative. Don't you hate that? Everything has been relative for so many decades that we can't remember when we last have had some ultimate truths. Still, I can't stop having doubts about everything. So goes with perfumes, too.
I used to love the list of Top x frangrances of seasons. I would check, compare, try. Today it bothers me. Essentially, there is no difference between the offer of these lists of respected bloggers and the offers that you get in any chain perfumery shops or beauty magasines. Since when you have summer perfumes, winter perfumes? It was recently made up by marketing machinery which had this brilliant idea that people might buy more if it is a seasonable stuff. So we have now even 'summer', 'sun',' light' perfumes. You add a bit of citrus or bergamot or verbena or thinker the formula and have a summer fragrances and they will line up to buy it.
Of course, we have the intelligent bloggers who really love perfumes and they know about perfumes and they come up now with 'strange' things for summer, as to make up for mainstream and obvious (by obvious for summer I mean Eau d'Hardrien or Eau Parfumee au the Vert or eaux de colognes).
Last year, the first stop at a gas station once we entered France was on  a really hot day and, while waiting to pay at the counter desk, the old lady in front of me smelled strong of Mitsouko. Oh, that was heaven. I told myself 'that's France!'. It was also In FRance that I sniffed some heavy oriental Serge Lutens in a port city, on a street where otherwise was smelling strong of cooked sea food. Heaven! My stepmother wears always Opium or Magie Noir and she smells wonderful (I always loved the way the perfumes smell on her) Hmmm, are these summer fragrances or not? I don't know and the lady at the gas station apaparently didn't read any Top 10 summer franges list and she couldn't care less. Oh, yes, I'm being moody today and I'm sure all of all these bloggers (because I trust them , they are smart and they know about it) will agree that in fact you can wear whatever you like in any weather and you can reach for same fragrance in any season.
So, why then these lists? May be, as the intelligent marketing people who invented the summer perfumes made the job, the bloggers know that there is a fact that will be hundreds thousands of people google-ing 'summer fragrances' before they start purchasing. This is how they will get on these blogs. Though I doubt that many will imediatelly buy Manoualia or Attar or wear Muscs Koublai Khan. They might though the new Womanity of Mugler.
I am a summer person. I could leave at over 40 C degrees forever and all I require is a bit of shadow. Winter is a period when all I want is that time passes as fast as possible. From what I understand we are fortunate to live in a quite warm period of the earth and a suprisingly long one. Normally it is much colder if not ice age around here. So that's a time for me to live and I take advantage and most of all I enjoy everything at maximum during the summer. And all perfumes smell much better in the summer. All.
One day, based on these lists, I realized that I could live all my life only with the four Jacques Guerlain, Shalimar for winter, Apres L'Ondee for spring, L'Heure Bleue for summer and Mitsouko for fall. But in fact I use them almost all the time, I will spray at lest 2 of them on me (if I wear Shalimar overall, I will have Apres L'Ondee on my wrists etc). What is left from the seasonal preferences then? Not saying: what do we mean by summer? Is it a matter of how hot it is? Only in the small Europe, we have such differences in summer from a place to other. Also I've had some summers when I've hardly noticed the real season. I worked all day long and in the office the temperature is the same all year long.
So, please, define 'summer'.

What other lists we could have: Top 5 fragrances for a cabrio sport; Top 15 fragrances for wearing while participating in Big Brother or other real TV shows; Top 10 fragrances for wearing in Africa, Asia, South America and other exotic places; oposite, what would you wear in frozen north (what Sarah Palin actually wears when in Alaska?). What is nicely avoided is the Top of fragrances to wear at office (that I would love - Muscs Koublai Khan or Fracas?).

Yes, I'm being moody and nasty today. Of course, the title of my post is 'Summer Perfumes' since I hope also to get some readers or my blog. And I'm also going to make some friends.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Parfums DelRae

I have no idea what the work of a perfumer means. From the blog of self-taught perfumer Andy Tauer or from the blog of the perfume historian and perfumer Octavian Coifan at 1000fragrances I could have a glimpse in the life and work of a perfumer. And I try hard to imagine what it really means, how are the work days of these people. I can see the image of my beloved Jacques Guerlain at a desk with a folder in front of him and some bottles around, or Andre Fraysse looking like a pharmacist. And again the one of Jacques Guerlain at his desk and what looks like a huge room full of bottles. Oh, that would be my dream, to be in that room, around him, it's heaven.

Anyway, going back to the labour of a perfume and the work of perfumers. I just suppose it is hard work, takes a lot of reasearch in the infinite world of scents and their combinations, it takes a lot of trying which means delicate work with quantities and concentrations of different oils. It must be ups and downs and happiness and frustrations. A lot of dreaming and rational decisions, too. And, of course, I think it's creation, pure art work. But that's futile to say.
So you have this huge labourious work for a perfume. I just read that Michel Roudnitska worked 2 years and 300 trials for his Bois de Paradis. Which I just have on my right wrist. That's a long time, thousands of perfumes came on the market between the moment he started and the moment he finished. He produced in average a trial every 2 days and half. That is enormous. And still, I stay here, with my sample of Bois de Paradies and I shall give my opinion on his creation though I have no idea what he wanted and how much he put there. Must be awful for the perfumers, all these bloggers who give for free their opinion, no education or whatsoever in the field. In the end, the best way to aproach it, it would be to say if I like it or not. Luca Turin just admits that he  is totally subjetive. It's all about being subjective and no smart ass, because I'm not. Ok, it is just my way to apologize for whatever I'm going to say stupid here (hey, I just read that Marques was warning the cristics of his books that by interpeting them 'they take on the responsibility of decoding the book and risk making terrible fools of themselves'. That's the risk of any critic, isn't it?).

So this week was my DelRae week. Some might have DelRae month, DelRae year or DelRae decades. That's to say that DelRae is good stuff. It would be to easy to say that there is a general reflex in giving unconditional respect to the son of the great Roudnitska. And even if it so, still we love perfumes so we talk about them, taken all the relativity given by our noses and set of mind. So I can't say I can forget Michel Roudnitska, the creator of DelRae perfumes, is the son of the creator of legendary Diorissimo and Femme, plus other Dior.... s. I can't. My only cheap excuse is that Diorissimo or Femme don't love me. I love them but they don't love me back. So I was curious to see if his son creation might suit me better.

Visiting DelRae perfums reminded me of impression of Ian McEwan books. I started with Atonement, soon after it's release (time before it became a bestseller due to Oscar fame of the film). It was a pleasure to read the way Ian McEwan writes, I did it thoroughly, word by word, which is rare for me. On the other hand, R was totaly anoyed with reading it. The long descriptions, of gardens, of moods, of days, of everything made him nervous despite the brilliance of plot. I couldn't agree less but I did undertood what he meant. Some people can't take the prose in this way. It's the same with Michel Roudnitska perfumes. They are prose, long detailed description. See Amoureuse, it's breathtaking, I saw so many Ah and Oh in reviews, people who found their big love. Yes, it is a gorgeous perfume. In the descriptive way. It's a compostion which looks like a composition, you get all the facets and nuances lenghty described. Feminine and sexy and luxurious and it will tell you everything. What I don't undersatand: it tells me roses, too, but I don't see them mentioned. My nose...
Debut is for me the best, I think I already wrote about it. That could be a classic one day and for the right woman, could be an excellent signature scent. And I see the story, it tells me cold light, the sofisticated and daring woman with the white shirt, an elegant office room with a lot of light over restrained fancy design furniture. Bit of a dream, bit of a cold mind.
Emotionelle is hard to take for me, I couldn't wear it dead but I see could be the piece of cake for some. It's a freezing perfume.
And Bois de Paradis. That's for me the most commercial of the line. At the begining it's a story for girls and modern women, who want to move out from mainstream. But the juicy opening is misleading, because later it's not sweety fruity floral anymore. It becomes a real perfume, another lenghty story of Michel Roudnitska. I'm not being ironical when I suggest that may be should have a more appealing name for the ones who finally want a quality perfume.

So what about the prose of DelRae? Just that, though I put them in a pack, each of them is a perfume in itself which should be really discovered with a lot of patience. They are very different, though the style is similar. They have an author with passion for beautiful descriptions.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Tango and wine

The quality is not great but it's worth watching it. Truly beauty.