Jin and I were away, driving around Europe last year, when we met one of our girlfriends in Hanover and we all spent three fabulous days discovering the city. It was ripe with stuff to see including a lift that goes around the interior of their church or town hall (sorry, it was broken and we never got a ride) and the Niki de Saint Phalle sculptures dotted around the town and in their gallery, tulips and daffodils galore and a very nice shopping district. Continue reading →
I was recently lucky enough to snag a sample of the new Galop d’Hermès in an Hermès boutique in Copenhagen. Well, I say lucky, but what I really mean is that I stomped my little feet until I got one, because I was buying a whole bottle of Osmanthe Yunnan at full retail so you better believe I wasn’t leaving without some loot. I got a chance to fondle the bottle too. I’m not sure what the string is for (hanging it up with your gym wash bag maybe?), but it’s Hermès and it’s shaped like a stirrup, so who am I to quibble.
Fragrantica gives these featured accords:
Rose, Leather, Saffron, Quince
Galop d’Hermès opens bright and mouth-puckeringly tart, a saffraleine leather glossed to a high shine with rose and cassis. It’s hard not to swoon, to be honest, because the immediately appetizing mixture of velvety rose petals, saffron, and orange swells to fill the nose and make your mouth water. Syrupy and rich, the opening is almost gourmand to my nose, but then a wave of urinous cassis (blackcurrant) crests and washes over the composition, adding a welcome astringency.
Now, don’t be too alarmed by my use of the word “urinous” here – both cassis and grapefruit share a compound that is also present in urine, but if you don’t perceive any “cat pee” note in fragrances such as Aqua Allergoria Pamplelune, then you should be fine with this. I think that this is the only element in Galop that might be considered shocking or animalic, the way the perfume makes that blackcurrant note teeter between pee and unripe fruit. To my nose, rhubarb has a similar effect.
Likewise, despite equestrian-based marketing, there is really nothing horsey or animalic about the leather note, which is the smooth, vegetal leather used in other Hermès fragrances such as Kelly Caleche. But the texture here is less angular. The sleekness of leather fuzzes up even more, gaining a dusky wooliness that really works against the tart cassis. What surprises me is that the lush, velvety rose I smelled in the opening disappears, morphing into a rose-tinted baked apple – a quince basically. I bake with quinces, and the scent matches the taste: a rosy, perfumey apple with a mealy texture. When a slice or two is slipped into an ordinary apple tart, they turn a fabulous shade of blush pink.
Longevity is pretty good – I get about 6-8 hours. Projection is quiet, though, which is hardly surprising, given it’s an extrait. I can see this working for posh girls and boys who know their way around a tack room or two. It’s as refined as the JC Ellena scents for Hermès but has just enough of that Christine Nagel richness of touch to push more towards glamorous equestrian ball territory than sheer daytime wear.
Curse you Narciso Rodriguez! Why are your fragrances packaged and named alike? Brand cohesion is one thing, but have you no sympathy for your customers (or their hapless friends who try to buy for them)?
Well, applying my attention to the list on Fragrantica, I realised that the 31 listed NR fragrances are all just variations on just four pillar fragrances: For Her, For Him, Essence, and Narciso.
Got it? You’re welcome.
Today I’m going to cover NR’s second release, Narciso Rodriguez For Her EDP. This is the one with the PINK bottle and the BLACK box.
Narciso Rodriguez For Her EDP 2006
Narciso Rodriguez For Her EDP by Christine Nagel + Francis Kurkdjian
Fragrantica gives these featured accords:
Top: rose, peach
Heart: musk, amber
Base: sandalwood, patchouli
Portia has done a stellar review of the original EDT, but there is a difference in emphasis in the EDP. Intimate and sensual, both are musky florals with very clean (fractionated) patchouli and amber. On me the sillage and longevity of both are just moderate.
However, I remember the EDT (I’ve sold my bottle) as sharper and drier – more masculine perhaps – than the EDP. What distinguishes the EDP for me is a prominent note of peach, juicy but not too sweet. This is what I hoped Lancome’s Tresor would be like if it did not collapse into a sickly sweet, artificial mess on me.
Narciso Rodriguez – Fall 2016 – NYFW
However, not everyone seems to particularly notice the peach in NR For Her EDP. The fascination with Narciso Rodriguez fragrances is that there are wide variations in how people perceive them. You might love the EDP but utterly disagree with my take on it.
While musk is the common accord in both concentrations of Narciso Rodriguez For Her, people nevertheless react differently to other notes and accords. They will detect more or less rose, more or less amber, more or less citrus, more or less orange blossom (I get none), and so on. Musk anosmia means that some people can hardly smell them at all.
For years I eked out a large decant of the EDP. Mostly I wore it when travelling for work. Its casual but professional style was perfect for meetings, but even better was to save it for the evenings when I was in the hotel and at could at last take a shower and relax. Any parent of young children will understand the heaven of being alone in a hotel room with the bathroom, room service and the TV remote entirely at your command. NR For Her EDP easily complements moments of simple enjoyment such as this.
You know that frag you buy a decant of? You know you’ll never need a full bottle but you might like to gran and spritz every so often? Well, I wrote about today’s offering in 2014 because I’d run across it in the mall and loved the bottle, which is why I’d bought my first decant. Having run through two 5ml My Perfume Samples decants and well into my third I thought perhaps it was time to bite the bullet and go FB.
Fragrantica gives these featured accords: Top: Bergamot, neroli, lime Heart: Coconut, jasmine, ylang-ylang Base: Sandalwood, vanilla, myrrh
So it arrived a couple of days ago while Scott was over and we sniffed it on him. We both went CRAZY because it’s super yummy and was really masculine on him. Quite a different scent life compared to the ride that I get.
I know, there are probably a bunch of you that are rolling their eyes or have even not clicked on the post because Lolita Lempicka is a bit too mainstream and uncool but I’d like you to remember how groundbreaking her licorice & violet Lolita Lempicka was in the Disney-ised poison apple, how outrageous to do a hyper gourmand mens like Au Masculin and how much fun and whimsy her whole range contains.
What do I smell? It’s the perfect summer scent, a cool tropical creamsicle over a lovely warm base that will have you smiling along and enjoying the ride. Even here in the depths of our Sydney winter I am instantly transported to glorious tropical evenings and those crazy drinks by the pool. Elle L’aime is sunshine in a glass and I bet you’ll find it hard to scowl while bathing in its enveloping radiance.
Sadly Elle L’aime seems to have been a flop, I can’t see it in the department stores any more. The upside is that you can currently get it for nearly FREE at the discounters! As it was released and dumped so quickly I don’t imagine it will last there for very long though. If Bronze Goddess or Aqua Allegoria Lys Soleia are fragrances you like then I reckon Elle L’aime will ring the same bells.
Last time I wrote, I think Elle L’aime will be a perfect first grown up fragrance or a lovely addition to your easy wear, spritz and forget wardrobe. In fact, though they don’t smell much the same I am reminded of Annich Goutal’s Songes, a sugared version made in the 21st century perhaps. I think it still captures the sense and feeling of Elle L’aime perfectly.
Jo Malone has decided to do a limited edition range that depicts different eras of British history, great idea! In this, my favourite of the releases, the bloody and turbulent Tudor years, 1485 to 1603 in England and Wales. A time of rebellion, religious strife, war, the widening of the rich/poor gap and also change in the way Monarchy and Government proceeded.
How has Christine Nagal seen this time in fragrance?
Fragrantica gives these featured accords: Top: Pink pepper, clove Heart: Damask rose, Tudor rose, ginger Base: Amber, patchouli, white musk
Sparkling, lightly sizzling roses, a little musky and very pot-pouri (but in a nice way). Tudor Roses & Amber takes me back to the 1980s walking into friends houses and there would be a wooden or porcelain bowl with a many holed lid, from that little receptacle would gush glamorous fragrance that welcomed you into the house. I used to love that initial waft as you walked into a house and would often go and smell it later in the day.
Jo Malone has let Christine Nagel do it with fun spices and the clove/ginger mix keeps it zinging well into the heart. I can smell the depths of the velvets and the sparkle of brocade, Tudor Rose and Amber deals only in the beauty present, none of the danger or bleakness. Here is a fragrance that captures the wealth and glamour of Tudor England, the upper echelons and only after their annual bath.
There is nothing challenging hiding in Tudor Rose & Amber. There are no great divergences and no innovations but what Jo Malone (via Estee Lauder) has done is make a very pretty and wearable rose. Maybe Tudor Rose is a little deeper and darker in the heart but it comes with a very light, warm and generic amber/white musk base.
To be honest, for this kind of money you can do better but I also understand that not everyone wants to change the world or light up a room with their fragrance. Here we have a perfectly good, wearable rose scent that lasts about 3 hours before it fades into unnoticeability which is quite good on my scent hungry skin for a Jo Malone cologne.
I love this ad. Beautifully shot, the music is perfect both thrilling and calm, the girls are a multicultural mix and all doing stuff that takes courage. I like very much the blend of drama and beauty, so good.
The beautiful Australian actress Cate Blanchett won the 2014 Academy Award “Best Lead Actress” for her role in the movie Blue Jasmine. Cate is well known and loved in Australia, and particularly in Sydney where she was the Co Artistic Director of the Sydney Theatre Company from 2008-2012. I’ve never met her, but so many of my friends have and absolutely rave about what a goddess she is, stunningly gorgeous and radiant – elegance personified. In 2013 she became the ethereal ‘face’ of Giorgio Armani’s new perfume release
Si by Christine Nagel for Giorgio Armani 2013
Fragrantica gives these featured accords: Top: Cassis Heart: Freesia, may rose Base: Vanilla, ambroxan, patchouli, woodsy notes
I was given a very generous ‘discovery pack’ of 7ml EDP and a body lotion recently. The juice itself I find is simple and uncomplicated and has a good silage and longevity, however the scent is borderline linear and doesn’t change appreciably on my skin as it dries down. On opening there is a sweet, sugary vanilla and berry stickiness that has a light floral background and this combination is persistent for about two hours. After this time the vanilla is less prominent, and it is all blackcurrant and rose with just a faint hint of something woody in the background. I’m starting to get worried about my nose – twice now I’ve tested perfumes which have patchouli listed in the notes, but I’ve not been able to find it. And I know what patchouli smells like, goodness, it is pretty distinctive as a stand alone oil… so not sure about that.
So after 3 hours, I’ve got a pleasant berry/floral vibe going on. I know ambroxan can be amazing on my skin, but I feel like I’m just waiting for that to kick in and give a twist, and at 4 hours maybe I’m getting hints of it however I’m still having to look hard. The scent becomes a touch more personal. It’s like being at a summer barbecue with friends, and at desert time having a generous helping of pavlova heaped with berries and vanilla cream, then after a while wandering off to a quieter spot for a 1:1 conversation.
All round, I do like it, but it is a sweet and dependable perfume – not sure what the question was, but the answer, sí (yes), is definitely not one borne from the throes of passion. I’ve worn it to work on days where I know I’m going to be ultra-busy and don’t have time for too many distractions. On these same days I’ve also opted for old-faithful flats instead of killer high heels, and worn something comfortable, and I’m not 100% sure I haven’t just grabbed the nearest bottle to dab on as I’ve run out the door.
Now, I’ve seen a similar question asked on another blog but I’m going to repeat it here because I’m interested – if you had to choose any perfume/s for Cate Blanchett to represent, which would you choose?
Tina G xx
Cate Blanchett and Anne Fontaine – A connection – Sì