Due to being in the throws of the worst man flu since records began (OK, this may possibly be a slight exaggeration) I am bringing this week’s perfume pic to you a day late – apologies. Despite my serious ailment, yesterday Nigel and I made a worthy attempt at finding our wedding suits for the 985th time (again, a slight exaggeration) and in our frustration, and by ‘our’ I of course mean ‘my’, we ended up perusing the fragrance hall in Debenhams.
Of course there wasn’t much of note to sniff amongst the crowded shelves but one thing that did stand out as noteworthy was the new perfume by ‘Superbass’ diva and rapper Nicki Minaj. The perfume is called ‘Minajesty’ and when I say that it is worth seeking out I do so with the disclaimer that I am solely referring to the perfume’s crazy flacon and not the fragrance itself, which is, as one would expect, your generic fruity syrup/celebrity fragrance dreck.
The first day in May is a special day in France, not only is it National Labour Day, but it is also customary on this day to present one’s loved ones with a sprig of lily of the valley (or ‘muguet’ as it is known by the French) in celebration of the beginning of spring. Guerlain, France’s premiere perfume house, are known for embracing tradition and in celebration of this very special day they launch a newly packed version of their limited edition Eau de Toillette ‘Muguet‘.
Last year’s offering was a beautiful papier-mâché interpretation of the famous quadrilobe bottle (which has housed iconic fragrances such as Jicky and Nahéma, to name just a few) and was a tough act to follow. This year’s Muguet (seen above) is entirely different and is housed within the brand’s iconic bee bottle, which is fitting seeing as Guerlain has been going all out for the 160th anniversary of this most special vessel.
Regular readers of The Candy Perfume Boy will know that I am a fully-fledged, card-holding member of the Muglerati. Seriously, I’m a total Mugler fan boy and pretty much adore every fragrance the brand has ever done. Why do I love them so? Well it’s simple really, they are the most daring, fabulous and ‘high-fashion’ of perfume houses and they constantly push the envelope with their olfactory output, creating couture scents that are as unique as they are beautiful.
It’s difficult for me to pick my favourite Mugler perfume as my tastes switch between all of them on a regular basis, but the one I have the most affection for is Alien. This intergalactic jasmine is the fragrance I wore when I first met my soon-to-be husband (I love saying that – 75 days people!) and it is ingrained within my memory as an important perfume both sentimentally and artistically.
This year Thierry Mugler will be launching a new version of this terrestrial perfume – Alien Eau Extraordinaire (review to come soon) – and to coincide with this launch the brand has revitalised their advertising campaign with a new image and TV spot (directed by Floria Sigismondi). The new image can be seen above and displays Alien’s solar goddess bathed in a celestial glow and standing in a great hall like a statuesque monument to the sun.
The day consisted of a trio of treats; sniffing perfume at Bloom followed by award wining fish and chips next door at Poppies (well calamari and chips for me) before even more sniffing at Les Senteurs. My main aim of the day, other than socialising of course, was to pick up a new rose perfume, so at Bloom I headed straight for the Parfumerie Generale bottles to try the widely respecte Brulure de Rose (I’m not sure how I feel about this one) and the new Isparta (review to come soon). Neither hit the spot so I have nabbed some samples and will be revisiting them over the coming weeks. I did realise just how much I need a bottle of Djhenné though and am now 99.9% sure on the wedding scent front, so it was a very worthy trip indeed!
I love Ladurée, I love macarons and I most certainly love perfume. So it will come as no surprise that I am quite keen on the above picture, which very quickly become my perfume pic of the week when I stumbled across it, whilst preparing for my upcoming review (due to be up next week) of the latest Nina Ricci fragrance – the macaron inspired ‘Le Tentation de Nina‘.
Nina Ricci (the brand, obv), perfumer Olivier Cresp and Vincent Lemains (the Head Pastry Chef at Ladurée) have teamed up to create a macaron “inspired by a perfume” and a perfume “inspired by a macaron”. The macarons, which are winking at you in the above picture, are a devilishly delicious-sounding blend of lemon, raspberry, Bulgarian rose absolute and almond, all of which is topped off with a dash of gold leaf. The perfume is very much in the same spirit and lists similar notes. Does it perfectly capture the spirit of the most darling of pastries? Well, you’ll have to wait until my review for that little nugget of information…
A scary fact dawned on me this weekend – the fact that it is not long at all until my dear fiancée and I get married, 103 days in fact. And I mean properly hitched, thanks to our lovely politicians allowing for gay marriages to take place for the first time in the UK in 2014. It’s a brave and wonderful world that we’re leaving in and I hope that all around the world others will have the same opportunities that I am ever so fortunate to have.
Now I’m very excited for my pending nuptials of course, but there is a lot to organise and whilst Nigel and I are very much on top of things, the pressure definitely feels on to get things done in the little time that we have left. We’ve sorted the flowers, cake, venue, Butler & Wilson bling, favours and a whole host of other things – but there’s still a lot to do and I’m hoping not to turn into a Groomzilla anytime soon!
Of course, one of the most important decisions for me to make is what perfume to wear on the big day. I posted a little while back, pooling some of my ideas together for the big wedding scent hunt. So how far have I come now? Have I finally picked my wedding scent? Or am I just as clueless as I was when I first started this little journey? Well the answer is…
It may have only been just over 20 day ago that we were ringing in the new year and looking back at the perfume highs and lows of 2013 but the industry machine churns on and already we’re seeing announcements of new and upcoming launches from familiar brands. This is all very exciting of course, as 12 exciting months of olfactory discovery awaits the gluttonous noses of many a perfume addict. I say bring it on!
One intriguing new launch that caught my eye last week was the brand new scent from quirky British house Penhaligon’s. Tralala (launching in April -100ml for £150) is the whimsical name of the perfume and it has been created in collaboration with another British name – the unconventional fashion brand Meadham Kirchoff. Having scented the brand’s collections for 9 seasons, Penhaligon’s and perfumer Bertrand Duchaufour have set out to bottle the fantastical and contrasting world of one of Britain’s most idiosyncratic fashion houses.
In a weird case of serendipity I have been in the mood to do things on a regular basis over the last week; wear rose perfumes and stare at Salvador Dalí’s 1958 work ‘The Meditative Rose. The painting captures the ethereal beauty of the rose, floating high in the sky, casting a tranquil scene that aptly sums up how I feel about rosy fragrances within my collection.
I’ve always seen roses as having a soft and calming presence and much like the two small figures in Dalí’s painting I find myself feeling quite contemplative when wearing any perfume with roses. Over the last week I’ve been relying heavily on Montale’s Black Aoud, a perfume that pairs the sharpness of leather and oud with the most powdery of roses. It’s exotic but comforting and allows one to shroud oneself in a red blanket, which is especially handy in this weather.
So it’s a brand new year and after a short break its time to get one’s nose firmly back to the grindstone (booo!). This year I am hoping to be more dedicated to regular posts on The Candy Perfume Boy after a slightly turbulent 2013, with reviews and routine instalments in my ‘Scent a Celebrity‘, ‘Guide to‘ and ‘Desert Island Sniffs‘ series. I’ll also be sharing my weekly Escentual column and updates on the hunt for my wedding scent with you – all-in-all, I hope for it to be a very exciting year!
One new addition to The Candy Perfume Boy’s roster in 2014, is the ‘Perfume Pic of the Week’. Starting today and running every Monday, I hope that this visual feature allows us to connect more and discuss all elements of perfume ranging from new and exciting launches to perfume advertising, bottles from my collection and anything else that is smelly and intriguing.
The inaugural Perfume Pic of the Week is an image of some vintage Shalimar Eau de Toilette I picked up in Tesco of all places (other supermarkets are available). My online snooping dates it as being from the late ’90s/early ’00s, but if you have a better estimate then please say. I’ve included the Shalimar here because a vintage purchase is most unusual for me, simply because I avoid the chase for vintage formulations as a general rule of thumb.