This past Thursday, 30th April, Fragrance Consultant Virginie Daniau lead the Perfume Lovers London group through a sampling of some of the benchmark Chypre fragrances of the 20th century. She began her talk by introducing the group to two key ingredients of Chypre fragrances, Labdanum and Oakmoss, before leading us through a sampling session that included such fragrances as Christian Dior’s Miss Dior and Gris Montaigne, Grossmith’s Golden Chypre, Ruth Mastenbroek, Atelier Cologne’s Trefle Pur, and Aromatics Elixir.
I left that evening with a natural perfume, Chypre, a fragrance from late perfumer Alec Lawless, who sadly passed away in 2012. My first impression of it was that it felt very green, not in a fresh way, but in the way that seaweed might feel, deep and almost soggy with fragrance. I also detected nuances of wet – slightly mud speckled – hay interlaced with really subtle floral notes and dashes of woody tobacco. I am really looking forward to spending more time with this one.
I have to say that this may have been favorite Perfume Lovers London meeting to date. This group is a hotbed of fragrance-related creativity. I am meeting lifelong perfume connoisseurs, other writers, people blending their own fragrances, and even those developing and running successful and truly niche, independent brands. It’s super inspiring to be in such company, and I am very much looking forward to the next meeting later this month on 21st May when perfume specialist, the brilliant Nick Gilbert, will be leading us through the work of Bertrand Duchaufour.