“The Scent a Celebrity Series is my vain attempt at picking perfumes for those who don’t know any better, yes I mean celebrities. Let’s face it, most celebrities are incapable of choosing decent clothing, boyfriends, girlfriends, movies, (insert-celebrity-mistake-here) let alone having the ability to make decisions about something as important as their scent – that’s where I come in. Never fear my dear schlebs, I will ensure that you are appropriately scented, all you need to do is listen.”
I always enjoy writing entries for the Scent a Celebrity Series. It’s seriously fun and challenging to try and delve into a character and pick out fragrances that I think can match their personalities. This process gives me a greater understanding of not only the celebrity in question, but also the fragrances I have matched with them, and I always coming away feeling as if I’ve seen things from a slightly different angle.
Speaking of different perspectives, I thought I’d take the liberty of approaching this episode of the series in a slightly different manner. Our subject for today is the inimitable Kate Bush, a musical enigma and theatrical performer who cannot be rivalled by any other starlet, dead or alive. She is simply unique – simply ‘Kate’. Instead of picking a number of fragrances that suit La Bush’s personality, as I would normally do, I’ve opted to scent four of my favourite Kate Bush albums – after all, there is nothing on this planet more filled with personality than a Kate Bush LP…
Penhaligon’s, the eccentrically British perfume house, is a curious outfit. Their historic back catalogue of perfumes is full of straight-laced florals, robustly masculine eau de toilettes and even some exotic follies. Over the last few years however, the brand has made a definite move away from the stiff upper lift of the past and have released a bunch of quirky fragrances that range from filthy florals that can only be worn after the watershed (Amaranthine) to contemporary takes on traditional themes (Sartorial). They’ve even flirted with the British’ love of gin cocktails (Juniper Sling) and have pushed the olfactory envelope to dizzying heights with the bizarre and whimsical (Tralala).
So yes, Penhaligon’s have modernised and funked-up their image of late, but they’re not afraid to return to their traditional roots – and that’s exactly what they’ve done with their latest masculine fragrance ‘Bayolea‘. Created as a reformulation of a bay rhum fragrance from the Penhaligon’s archives, Bayolea has been chosen to scent the brand’s new, and rather extensive grooming range, as well as front the collection in its Eau de Toilette form. Without giving too much away at this stage, it would be safe for me to say that Bayolea is an impeccably well-groomed fragrance that feels perfectly suited to any gent – modern, traditional or otherwise.
Quick off the back off the recent launch of their Bayolea fragrance and gentleman’s grooming range, Penhaligon’s are spoiling our noses with a brand new collection consisting of three historically-inspired fragrances. Launching in September, the three fragrances within this new collection are inspired by the “luxurious and decadent commodities which were traded through London’s historic docks at the turn of the 19th Century”.
“Piled high on the quaysides and arriving daily from the farthest flung corners of the globe in a burst of exoticism; the rarest treasures in dizzying abundance; London was the Warehouse of the World.”
Four years ago today, my good friend, Nick Gilbert and I embarked on an exciting perfume project with a view of turning the world of fragrance reviewing on its head. We set out to use the medium of Twitter to create entertaining and bitesize reviews in 140 characters or less – the result was @FragrantReviews – our smelly baby that launched both of our writing careers.
Writing these reviews is surprisingly challenging. It’s tough to dissect and truly represent a fragrance in such a small medium, but it’s also immense fun and I think I wouldn’t be speaking out of turn if I said that both Nick and I really enjoy putting these fragrant tweets together. They can be funny, they can be poetic and they can occasionally be mean, but one thing they never are is boring.
We’re now at over 3,000 followers, and to celebrate our fourth birthday, I’d like to share with you ten of my favourite Fragrant Reviews – five from Nick and five from me. They range from the olfactory time capsule of Eau de Toast to the utter hideousness of Viktor & Rolf’s BonBon and capture some of our big loves and a number of our, well, not-so-big loves. I hope you enjoy this brief retrospective and will have a go at chiming in with your own 140 character reviews in the comments box.
A short film from Penhaligon’s detailing the ‘alternative’ story of the creation of their latest masculine fragrance – Bayolea.
In honour of the launch of their latest fragrance, Bayolea, eccentrically British perfume house, Penhaligon’s have teamed up with creative collective, ‘Just So’ to create an animated film. Shot on a “shoestring” and in conjuction with stop motion animator, Daniel Gill (numerous TV ads, Fantastic Mr Fox and Frankinweenie), the Bayolea film takes place in the basement of Penhaligon’s Covent Garden Piazza store and contains a degree of fragrant magic.
“Working with Just So felt right from our first meeting and an initial concept has been interpreted wonderfully by Daniel. The entire project has felt like creating magic and I feel the film will have a life of its own; above product promotion yet still very Penhaligon’s”
– Matthew Huband,
Penhaligon’s Head of Global Marketing
Eccentric British fragrance brand, Penhaligon’s, have launched ‘Bayolea’, their new fragrance for men and an accompanying ‘Gentleman’s Grooming Range’. Recreated from a classic formula within the Penhaligon’s archive, Bayolea (and its accompanying grooming products) cater for all elements of the modern gent’s grooming ritual, and appear to be a more traditionally masculine entry in to the line.
Bayolea is described by Penhaligon’s Head of Global Marketing, Matthew Huband as being “wonderfully fresh and masculine”. The perfume, in limited edition candle form, was chosen to be the official fragrances of London Collections: Men 2014, earlier this year.
“I’m thrilled that we’re releasing this range, responding to our customers and applying a spritz of Penhaligon’s elegance to a modern grooming range. The fragrance is wonderfully fresh and masculine and I can’t wait to see it on the shelf (as well as in my bathroom!).”
– Matthew Huband,
Penhaligon’s Head of Global Marketing
This week’s Perfume Pic of the Week is a double-whammy of the colour pink. As you may tell from the slight overuse of varying shades of the colour on this website, pink is one of my favourite colours and to me, evokes feelings of joy. After all, some of the best things in life are pink, such as; roses, macarons and Womanity, just to name a few. So this week I’m celebrating a duo of fuchsia fancies that bring brightness in a rather lovely composite image.
Peonies are the first subject of this mini ode to the colour pink, and what a beautiful topic they are. Nigel and I adore fresh flowers and the number of filled vases in our house definitely outweighs the space found in a one bedroom apartment. This weekend we picked up some beautiful, pink peonies (wonderfully ‘snapped’ by Nigel in the picture above) that are grabbing our attention with their huge, showy buds and softly sweet/spicy odour.
I like the note of peony in perfume too, especially in Penhaligon’s rather marvellous Peoneve. What Peoneve does quite remarkably, is capture the sharp, peppery, spicy and rosy facets of the flower to create a perfume that presents the image of peonies in the ground with the petals and stems all present and correct, and surrounded by soft soil. Both the flowers and the perfume speak of a self-assured beauty that is both casual and striking.