måndag 23 maj 2016

Anatole Lebreton - Bois Lumière

Picture: Bois Lumière
Photo: PR Anatole Lebreton (c)
Bois Lumière is the third fragrance in the Lebreton line starts very honeyed, sweet and rough animalic, in an almost an unpleasant accord. But as almost always with strange beginnings of a fragrance, the rest is so much better.  Even if still dominating, the honeyed sweetness is toned down in the rest of the dry down, balanced with warm woody/resin notes, immortelle, hay and orange. A warm, glowing, sparkling and cosy fragrance, very special and comforting for grey days. In the base there is also a musky feeling wish sweeps through the overall warm impression as a refreshing, chilly, gust. A friend of mine finds that there is something in Bois Lumière that oddly enough is resembling accords of a fragrance in a quite different style, Chanel Cristalle Edt but with a thicker and denser texture.

Honey dominated perfumes are not common and the one I think of when wearing Bois Lumière is (of course) Serge Lutens Miel de Bois which I precieve as a more elegant alternative. Bois Lumiere is rougher and sort of rual in appearance, the bewitched forest shows another dimension. Bois Lumière is a fragrance which attracts compliments.

Bois Lumière is the perfect autumn, winter and early springfragrance. The sillage is medium and longevity outstanding, 24h. It's neutral unisex.

Rating: 5

Notes: Juniper, clary sage, mandarin orange, fir balsam, honey, rose, carnation, immortelle, beeswax, cedar, benzoin

måndag 16 maj 2016

Anatole Lebreton - L'Eau Scandaleause

Picture: L'eau Scandaleuse
Photo: PR Anatole Lebreton (c)

L'Eau Scandaleause is the second in the interesting perfumeline of Anatole Lebreton. L'Eau Scandaleuse starts with a dry, minimalistic, cold tubereuse not at all the big, lush, tropical varity, this is a windswept tubey of the north. The tubereuse is mingeling with a fresh, just tanned leather, with clear animalic, sort  of tart and tangy smell. The leather has not the rubbery, smokey structure as is common in many niche leathers, the leather in L'Eau Scandaleuse is clear, somehow clean and refreshing despite the animalic touch. On my skin the leather is the dominating note, well supported by the tubereuse. The interpretation of the leather is splendid, one of the most natural smelling leathernote I've experienced in a perfume. Every lover of leather perfumes has to test this one. L'Eau Scandaleuse is an excellent fragrance in the style and expression of Histoires de Parfums Tubereuse 3 Animale even if not smelling similar, the HdP is a warm immortelle tubereuse. The coldness of the leather reminds me of the almost stone-leather note of Etat Libre D'Orange Rien and the fluid coolness of Helmut Lang Cuiron in the old formula, havn't smelled the reissue.

L'Eau Scandaleuse is suitable to wear year around but not in the hottest day of the summer. It's an outdoor perfume, proper for the stable and riding out, with its powerful apperance. One has to be careful in applying before entering office. Longevity is, as all the Lebreton fragrances very good, about 24h and sillage is grand. L'Eau Scandaleuse is an amazing, intriguing perfume which triggers my imagination during the days of testing.

Rating: 5

Notes: Bergamot, peach, artemisia, tuberose, ylang-ylang, leather, castoreum, nagarmotha, oakmoss

måndag 9 maj 2016

Anatole Lebreton - L'Eau de Merzhin

Anatole Lebreton has founded his own fragrancehouse in his native part of France, Brittany. His perfumes are gathered under the slogan "Parfums de Liberté" and exudes a natural, carefree, sort of rual charm. Anatole is a collector of vintage perfumes, a perfume blogger and has also selling rare teas and fine chocolates.
Picture: L'eau Merzhin
Photo: PR Anatole Lebreton (c)
L'Eau de Merzhin is the first composition of Anatole Lebreton and the initial accords of this green, slight dirty perfume are just amazing: Smelling like a well managed, well maintained horsestable with the smell from the horeses themselves, combined by a very true  haynote, all emphasized by a light flowery breeze blowing into the open door of the stable a warm summerday. In the middlenotes the animalic impression decreases and green, grassy, galbanum, leafy and light flowery notes dominates with hints of fresh, humid moss and  tangy green notes in the base.  L'Eau de Merzhin smells like a sunny summerday in the forest, the bewitched forest of Merlin. A fullbodied spring and summer fragrance which make me think of the older version of Pierre Balmain Vent Vert, Parfumerie Generale Papyrus de Ciane, and the two Parfums de Nicolaï: Le Temps d'une Fête (for the tangy, green, flowers) crossed with Vie de Chateau (for the breezy haynotes).

Even if it seems to be dedicated for spring and summer, L'Eau de Merzhin is a strong fragrance with a solid texture which also make it appropriate for colder months. It's longevity is very good, unfragmented traces are left on skin after 24h. Sillage is big. L'Eau de Merzhin is unisex but leaning a step to the feminine side IMO.

Rating: 4

Notes: Galbanum, angelica, violet leaf, cassie, hawthorn, flouve, hay, tonka bean, orris, oakmoss.

måndag 2 maj 2016

5 favorites for spring 2016

Picture: Springtime, the first anemones
Painting of H.A Brendekilde (1857-1942)
Source: Blog of an art admier
It's May and full spring at last. This time of the year I always come to think about the romantic Heinrich Heine poem (from Dichterliebe) when I have to stay inside the office during the beautiful, ephemeral May days.

"Im wunderschönen Monat Mai,
Als alle Knospen sprangen,
Da ist in meinem Herzen
Die Liebe aufgegangen.

Im wunderschönen Monat Mai,
Als alle Vögel sangen,
Da hab' ich ihr gestanden
Mein Sehnen und Verlangen."

And now to the serious stuff: What to wear in this intense season:

Fleurs d'Oranger (Serge Lutens): The spring nights are often chilly and the days sunny and (quite) warm. Warm and sunny as the fullbodied Serge Lutens classic Fleurs d'Oranger. It's a staple neroli with deep, rounded flowers, some spices contrasted by a pleasant tnagy note.

Eau de Néroli Doré (Hermès): A splendid, neroli in the cologne style. Retro nostalgic but somehow contemporary, a touch of soapy with a very light metallic touch. I think it's inspiration from the first Hermès fragrance Eau d'Hermès. I can detect traces of the characteristic cumminnote but soft and wrapped in neroli. Maybe this is Jean Claude Ellenas tribute to the great Edmond Roudnitska, which I read somewhere was a mentor to JCE and also created Eau d'Hermès. Good longevity and sillage to be a cologne.

Eau de Rhubarbe Ecarlate (Hermès):  Good longevity and sillage to be a cologne. Tart, green/red like the steam of the rhubarb combined with a sort of fresh, wet, slight earthy note. I also sense a touch of what I think is a pink, crisp, light musky rose, but I'm not sure. This fragrance mingles very well with my skin and I recieve compliments. As with the neroli, good longevity and sillage to be a cologne.

Week End à Deauville (Parfums de Nicolaï): The salty sea meat the windswept forests near the coast. Green, mossy, minty, herbal and airy/watery/sandy with a crispy, white carillon of the small but sturdy Lily of the Valley. A wonderful interpretation of spring.

Déjè le Printemps (Oriza L.Legrand): The ulitmate springfragrance with crispy bulbflowers and galbanum. There is also a very light nectar-powder like note interacting with the sharper green notes which makes this to a delicous, sparkling, green almost springtime fragrance, a perfume for hte green fairy. A perfume for Tinkerbell.

måndag 25 april 2016

Making of Cannes - Quick reviews

Picture: A chic bottle of Rocher Princier
Photo: PR Making of Cannes (c)
Making of Cannes is a perfumebrand based in Grasse which creations are inspired of the Cannes Film Festival and the movie industry. Founder of the brand is Audrey Courbier who worked for Estee Lauder form many years, I havn't found who the perfumer is. Technically the fragrances are wellcrafted of a good quality and contains at least 20% perfumeoil, from a creative point of view even if beautiful nothing new or innovative. The fragrances are comforting, elegant and easy to wear.
Below some short thoughts of the five first releases from 2014:

Premier Role: This light oriental amber has a lovely vintage aura, especially in the start with something as unusual as a soft galbanum, this note often tend to appear as sharp. Taken as a whole Premier Role is a mix between two interesting perfumes from the past. Dior Dune and Balenciaga Prelude with an extra dose of smooth, restrained, moderate sweet white and yellow flowers. The first one-third is the most interesting then the fragrance get linear and smells almost the same for the rest of the dry down. Very feminine, warm, soft and comfortable to wear.

L'Amour la Monde: This is Frederic Malle Lipstick Rose crossed with a finetuned, realistic smelling leather like for example Acqua di Parma Colonia Leather. The leathernote vanishes after the topnotes and intergrates with the musky, powdery, creamy lipstick rose/violet accord. The more L'Amour la Monde dries down, the more of the powdery, musky, aldehydic character steps forward in a comfortable way. Just as with Permier Role the first one-third is the most interesting, than the fragrance stays almost the same, even if intensifying.

Invalouable: Starts very feminine as a flowery light powdery vanilla with fruity accents. The vanillic flower in its texture, not in the actual smell, is similar to the style of the angelic, powdery, flowery vanilla from Eau d'Italie Morn to Dusk. As Invalouable dries down to the middlenotes it settles in a light peppery, white flower accord  and the fragrance is close to the sparkling Ramon Monegal duo Kiss My Name and Lovely Day. As Invalouable reaches its warm and musky basenotes, the peppery sparkle steps back and the fragrance reminds of the beautiful summery white flower of Gianfranco Ferré which bears the same name as the designer.

Amazing Shooting: Listed as unisex but to my nose it's lending more to the feminine side. Starts fruity in a air of chypre. The fruits are fresh, not the spicy Mitsouko style, but combined with slight boozy notes, it becomes darker, almost creamy and much more sophisticated in apperance. Something which smells like a wellbalanced, not harsh teanote also glimpses, probably this is the metallicnote mentioned in the notelist. Amazing Shooting reminds me in style and expression of a more balanced EnJoy by Jean Patou made of much better ingredients.

Rocher Princier:  Listed as masculine or unisex the woody-spicy, to my nose dominantly incense-oudy Rocher Princier goes for both. Starts with a cold aldehydic chalky incensy which is close to Montale Full Incense. As Rocher Princier dries further down, a light smokey, confier, cold oudy aura appears and the fragrance in this stage has similaritues with Robert Piguet Oud Some light sweet spicy elements combined with balsamic notes deepens the fragrance in the basenotes. A rounded, well constructed incense-oud without any sharp edges or annoying pepper, very pleasent to wear. The smooth incense interpretation in texture is similar to the sweeter and gourmandy cosy incense Juozas Statkevicius (Josef Statkus). The favorite from the line both for me and Mr Parfumista.

torsdag 21 april 2016

Etat Libre D'Orange - Rien Intense Incense

Picture: Frau vor untergehender Sonne
SonnenuntergangSonnenaufgangFrau in der Morgensonne)
Painting of Caspar Friedrich David, 
between 1818 and 1820
Wikimedia commons
Rien Intense Incense is a reworking of the powerful Rien which is a favorite of mine from the Etat Libre d'Orange-line. I read at Fragrantica that the old Rien was reformulated in 2014 and now is much softer. There are speculations that the Rien Intense is a replacement for the old powerful formula of Rien as Rien Intense Incense also was released 2014. When refering to Rien below, I refer to the pre-reformulation version which I also reviewed earlier this week.

Rien Intense Incense (RII) starts with a smokey, almost burnt leathernote, similar to the same note in Rien. I can also smell light touches of chilly flowers, probably the iris and cold aspects of rose.There is a lightness and almost sparkle to the accords, probably the aldehydes. This impression is more or less present also in the later stages of the perfume. Further on there is also a rubbery note, as fresh rubber from new tires and a very light, on the verge to powdery (but not at all sweet) quality appears as a veil swirling around the fragrance. The incense is intricatly interwoven as I can't detect it as a singular note but it is somehow present, almost like a shadow. The for some ELDO fragrances typical balsamic accord which has traces of something smelling close to a woody coconut is present in most of the dry down of RII. The same coconut like accord is also apperant in Kerosene Copper Skies which is also the fragrance besides Rien I come to think of when sampling RII. In the basenotes, the flowery facetts re-appears but this time it smells of tubereuse, a note which isn't mentioned in the notelist, it's like it evolves from the coconut accord and mingles beautiful with that and (in this late stage) the slight smokey leathernote.
Picture: Rien Intense Incense
Photo: PR Etat Libre d'Orange (c)
Even if very strong and powerful, RII smells more rounded and less rough than the original, pre-formulation Rien. There is not the same pronunced construction site + wet concrete in RII as in old Rien, RII is also a tad sweeter, warmer and the spices are somehow more apparent. RII is quite linear with some minor variations in the different stages, for example the flowers in the first part of the fragrance. I'm experiencing Rien as the sauvage one and RII as a more refined and well-behaved (everything is relative) but anyway intriuging to wear. There is something dark mysterious and compelling about RII, it's more dreaming in character, just as the painting illustrating this post.

The old formula Rien and RII somehow complements each other and I assume that this is also even more the case with the new, softer formula. If owning the old Rien it is questionable whether it's worth owning the RII, it depends on how much one appreciate the fragrance, each formula highlighting different aspects.

Rien Intense Incense is perfect for the colder months but also for rainy days in the summer. Maybe also for a warm day as the above mentioned Copper Skies suprisingly had a great development when I tested it a warm summerday some years ago. RII is perfectly unisex, sillage is grand and longevity for at least 24h.

Rating: 5

Notes: Aldehydes, caraway, bergamot, rose, iris, incense, amber, patchouli, labdanum, moss

Thanks to Fragrance & Art for the sample to try

måndag 18 april 2016

Etat Libre D'Orange - Rien

Picture: Medival construction site.
Villard de Honnecourt, drawing of a buttress at Reims,
in his album of drawings, ca 1230 - 35. Bibliotheque Nationale

The name of Etat Libre D'Oranges Rien is an understatement to said at least. But that is on the other hand not surprising as it comes to this controventional perfumhouse, at least when it comes to the it's earlier releases. Rien is on of those earlier creations and it is executed by the famous Givaudan perfumer Antoine Lie. About the story behind and the perfumers inspiration of retro perfumes blended in a contemporary style and taken all the restrictions of rawmaterial in consideration that has ruined many of the great classics when reformulated, read the initiated review of Rien at Bois de Jasmin. Rien is one of these "complicated" cult fragrances, analyzed in almost it's every part in different parfumeblogs and forum and here is my version of it: The formula of Rien reviewed is the original, it's said to has been reworked to a softer version in 2014.

The perfume Rien is anything but "rien", instead it is very "très" as very much is going on in this blend. It starts by a very strong and almost overly harsh construction site note that I genreally like. But in Rien it's on the verge of being too much of that particular wet, putty, gritty and slight sweaty note. This note is also present but in a subtler and more pleasant way in Etros Messe de Minuit. There also a note of a tick, almost smokey and dry leather, as in a rough and heavy leather coat. As Rien is a very strong and potent blend one have to be very careful upon application. When sampling and wore a full sprits from the sample on the right arm and a half sprits on the left, I felt a difference in the scent. It smelled much better on the left, lower dose, hand, not as sharp and compact as on the right. But in the stronger concentration there on the other hand are some interesting animalic notes glimpse. As the first, strong blast tunes down, the fragrance turns into a pale pink almost withering rose backed up by a gentle cumminnote, musk and cold green whiffs that resembles geranium. This stage is slight powdery. The blend for a while gets even more dry to my nose and in this stage there is traces that reminds me of Aromatics Elixir by Clinique. But AE is a louder interpretation of the rose, geranium, moss and also distinguish the individual notes more apparently than in Rien, which notes seems to be more mixed together. In the basenotes there are also aimalic notes that is not as distinct in AE. There is an almost animalic furry note among the basenotes together with a distinct musknote and the powdery pale rose that remains subtle. In the middle and basenotes there are many similarities with the beautiful rose-musk combo in Musc Nomade by Annick Goutal and sometimes I'm almost thinking I'm wearing the latter even if MN is more refined and elegant in it's appearance. In the latest stage of the basenotes the rough leather from the earlier stages of Rien returns, but now it seems to be better in balance with the sourrunding notes than in the beginning.

Expect from the almost off-putting opening and topnotes of Rien, the perfume evokes just the right feeling of retroperfumes foremost in the leathery chypre style as Robert Piguet Bandit, Estee Lauder Azureé and Parfumes Grès Cabochard. But also as mentioned above, of a modern musky classic as Musc Nomade.

Rien is an interesting frag where a lot is going on during it's dry down and there is no risk of losing interest. Even the picky Mr Parfumista gives compliments when I wear Rien, which is strange as he often complians about strong aldehydic scents beeing too "old man/womanlike"on me. But Rien is dry, with almost no sweetness in it and Mr Parfumista is appreciating dry-wood perfumes for himself.  Rien is a must try for retro perfumelovers. I can't say it's officefriendly, not in it's initial stage anyway. This "offending" stage on the other hand dries down during the journy to work and when entering the office, the more pleasant middlenotes have appeared.

Rating: 5

Notes: Aldehydes, cummin, leather, iris, amber, patchouli, moss, incense, rose, pepper, styrax