This month the Barcelona-based designer Boris Bidjan Saberi launched his first fragrance. Saberi is best knows for his intricately constructed leather jackets, and it was no surprise to learn that the fragrance is inspired by the smell of vegetable tanned leather. Saberi also wanted the fragrance to reflect the sensory imprint of his daily work routine, the scents of raw materials that surround him in his atelier that at the end of the day mix with the odors unique to his body. This is how Saberi thinks of his work; each product he produces inevitably contains a part of himself as a designer and artisan.
As you may have gathered we are always intrigued by cross-cultural conversations between fashion and other disciplines. But we recently came across one originated by a perfumer. It was from the French brand Liquides Imaginaires, whose author, Philippe Di Méo, teamed up with three ballet dancers and Julien Benhamou, Paris National Opera’s photographer to make a short film inspired by the Charles Baudelaire poem “Elevation.”
Following its European launch, Comme des Garcons is releasing a new scent, DOT, at Dover Street Market in New York today. Though the company has authored seventy-five scents, DOT is its fifth scent created in-house, and the first since 2011. The scent riffs on the polka dot, which could serve as an unofficial CDG emblem. The prime note in the scent is that of the Osmanthus flower, which grows in the parks all over Japan in the fall.
Last year Helmut Lang reissued the original and much beloved trinity of Helmut Lang scents. And now the company released these perfumes in a travel size for those of you on the go.
Comme des Garcons is no stranger to the perfume business and has been knocking out great scents year after year at a good clip. Its new fragrance, Floriental, comes from the idea of reimagining a flower that has no scent (in this case, the Cistus flower). It also redefines traditional notions of perfume-making with no definite top, middle, or base scent notes.
It is no big secret that “perfume” is a bit of a dirty word in fashion. Often, it is seen, not without justification, as an easy way to make money by capitalizing on one’s brand name. The typical arrangement is to license out one’s name to a big perfume conglomerate, tell them what you want it to smell like, and sit back while the money rolls in. A successful perfume can be immensely profitable. Thierry Mugler, to take one example, has not designed a garment in decades, but his enormously successful perfume “Angel” has made him a millionaire many times over. All you need is a brand name and a good formula. It is no wonder then that every newly minted fashion designer and celebrity is eager to sign a perfume deal.