Post by Ainslie Walker
For those of you who don’t know who, Michael Edwards is, please stop everything and read below. For those who do, read on anyway, as we have an extremely generous and special giveaway for you today!
Michael Edwards / Fragrance of the World book + GIVEAWAY
Photo Donated Fragrances Of The World
I have nicknamed Michael, “The David Attenborough of the Perfume World” to friends who need an explanation, initially mainly due to his mannerisms and gentle accent. When I told him, he graciously and modestly accepted this, saying he “was very flattered”, and I was “far too kind”. The thing is, he has done as much, for the perfume industry, as Sir David has done with wildlife, exploring, categorizing and creating families, from a fragrant territory, very few had explored prior. He has created a vast and valuable foundation for us all to learn and discover from. His impact and input to the industry will be evident for many years, even generations to come.
Michael is a true gentlemen -softly spoken, approachable, and extremely modest. He is an independent fragrance evaluator, classifier, educator, author, consultant and historian. He is also a 2-time FiFi award winner – THE most prominent and prestigious award, of the fragrance industry.
He has classified more fragrances than anyone in perfume’s history. His comprehensive, annual book “Fragrances Of The World” is now in its 30th Anniversary Edition. Of the first book, released in 1984, Michael says humbly “ it was very modest, listing just 300 perfumes” (Actually, a huge undertaking if you think about it- that’s almost 1 fragrance for every day of the year!)
His experience and knowledge of perfumes and the fragrance industry is second to none. He knows everyone who is anyone, perfumers and noses (Ellena, Roudaniska, De Chiris…around 400 of them!), oil houses (Coty, Robertet, Firminech, Givadaun…), fashion brands, (Tom Ford, Chanel, Dior, Lutens, Estee Lauder, Prada, Hermes…), perfume distributors, bottle designers, retailers (Harrods, Nordstrom, David Jones…in fact these 3 give him ALL their display windows on release of his books, they are THAT crucial to their sales!)
His contact list is incredible and he has met and interviewed many of the greats, including many who have now sadly passed away. He was the first to interview perfumers, and expose some of the mystery surrounding French perfumery, for his now out of print book, Perfume Legends.
Seriously; he knows EVERYONE! They come to him for advice, guidance and information. Evelyn Lauder calls him “the perfume experts’, expert!” And yet he remains so incredibly humble.
For the Fragrances Of The World manuals, he and his talented Australian based team categorize every perfume released (!!) into 4 fragrance groups – Floral, Oriental, Woody and Fresh, and then into a further 14 subgroup families, from his famous fragrance wheel.
Photo Stolen Fragrances Of The World
Each year he updates, adding all the new releases and discontinuations for that year. In 1984 only 30 of the fragrances were ‘new’, in 1993, the team added 130, in 2003, 580, and so on until last year they added a whopping 1500!! The 2014 edition contains more than 8000 fragrances, and the 2015 is set to have 1400 more!
Originally developed to help retailers to sell perfumes, and lessen confusion for consumers, the books are now known as the bibles of the industry. Perfume Legends now fetches $700 on ebay!! He cites the wine industry as being years ahead in its universal classifications, descriptions and understanding. The perfume industry still has a long way to go to quash the confusion and overwhelm felt when buying/selling/choosing and talking about fragrance.
“The right fragrance is almost as hard to find as the right man” (Allure magazine) His life’s work, certainly makes it easier for us all to find that ‘needle in a haystack’ personal fragrance.
Photo Donated Fragrances Of The World
Tips from Michael (and me) on how we can use his books:
For collectors, perfume lovers, retailers and consultants helping others to find there perfect scent(s), (aka APJ peeps!!) the books are invaluable.
- Michael recommends highlighting in the book, all the fragrances in our collections – we will start to see patterns forming in certain fragrance groups/subfamilies e.g. for me, ‘woody oriental’ and also ‘green’. This helps us to discover similar others we may also like. As an experiment, ask friends their 3-4 favorite fragrances and look them up in the back of the book – chances are 2 will fall in the same group, sometimes even subfamily too – flip to this category in the front, and then you will easily be able to recommend other fragrances they will love from there.
- My tip for perfume storage and study: Using the 2014 edition, I have now organized my perfume collection into family groups, (instead of by brand) using the book’s categories. Now I can study their similarities and differences, training my nose along the way, and stretching myself to expand what I wear from my wardrobe – hours of fun!
WHAT CAN YOU WIN?
This week we will have 1 Winner who receive:
1 x Michael Edwards Fragrances Of The World 2014 ($195 Retail!!)
P&H Anywhere in the world
HOW DO YOU WIN?
Open to everyone worldwide who follows AustralianPerfumeJunkies via eMail, WordPress, Bloglovin or RSS. Please leave how you follow in the comments to be eligible. I must be able to check that you follow so if you have an email address on your gravatar that’s different to your follow address then please email me so I know. Yes, you can start following to enter, in fact it’s encouraged.
You must tell me how you follow APJ
Tell us how do you recommend fragrances to others? Are you pinpointing their need and loves, or only recommending your favorites?
Entries Close Thursday 28th August 2014 10pm Australian EST and winners will be announced in a separate post.
Winner will be chosen by random.org
The winner will have till Monday 1st September 2014 to get in touch (portia underscore turbo at yahoo dot com dot au) with their address or the prize will go to someone else.
No responsibility taken for lost or damaged goods in transit.