Thank you to Ruth (aka lipstick on MakeupAlley) and Tania for pointing out this fabulous article in the New Yorker about perfumer Jean Claude Ellena. The article is written by Chandler Burr (author of The Emperor of Scent) and focuses on the creation process that resulted in the final version of Hermès Un Jardin Sur Le Nil.
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Hi Robin! I printed this out and will read tonight in bed! It looks like a good read!
It is really nicely done, and one of the things I love about the New Yorker is that they allow longer articles — it is much more in depth than your average perfume article.
Wow- thanks very much for the link. Read the whole thing and then saved it out. What a fascinating process. Also, since I've been to Aswan, and on the Nile, the whole thing about the desert being odorless was right on. (The air is so dry there you hardly need to wear deodorant! Perfumes in an alcohol base evaporate so quickly there you almost don't have time to notice them.) Anyway- a great read for sure.
Glad you liked the article!
And have you smelled Un Jardin Sur Le Nil yet? I'm very curious if it reminds you in any way of any place you visited in Egypt.
I have NOT smelled it yet- but will try and get the rear-in-gear and do so. I didn't smell any green mangoes when I was there but am curious nonetheless.
I learned so much from this article! The part about dept store fragrances designed to smell good on paper test strips was fascinating. I've seen my friends buy scents based on that, without ever testing the fragrance on their skin.
Also, I got a better understanding of what aldehydes were. Now I think: aldehydes = perfumey
Wasn't that part interesting? I always thought “professionals” used the paper test strips, and didn't understand why I didn't like them. I much prefer to try on skin.
Printed out the article last night and got halfway through before hubby came to bed. Will read the rest this morning. Very interesting, and gives you a new understanding of the process of creating a new scent. The Emperor of Scent is on my nightstand too, so I'm fully immersed in fragrance!
I have been meaning to re-read Emperor. I read it before I had tried many of the fragrances he discusses. I am so science-challenged that I skimmed many of the technical discussions which are of course the point of the book