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segunda-feira, 7 de março de 2016

Années Folles: How a Time Machine Works

by: Serguey Borisov

History-based perfumes, by their appearance, pierce tiny holes in the impenetrable veil of time, giving us a glimpse into the past. Interestingly, what part of history might we glimpse through them? Would we see a true or invented history?
Vintage bottles let us smell the past, as old photographs show it – a history turned yellow and brown, torn and scratched. New bottles made upon historical themes, promise the new development of old once popular themes and show history embellished, like those white and black retouched photos with the cheeks and lips gently colored by pink paint.
Vintage bottles with ancient perfumes are ambassadors from the past, like older women who still wear the gowns of their 20s on the streets of today. Newer perfumes on ancient themes are our peers, relatively young fans of alternate histories, dressing in steampunk style.
In both cases, “the perfumes of the past” try to stand out and make a splash in a fragrant stream of new products. After all, sooner or later, in a stream of aroma-diversity a new crystallization point should appear, which will be the start of something great! At least, so it was with the aldehydic Chanel №5; so it was with a chypre family and Chypre Coty; and so was the case with ozonic New West for Her by Aramis and the gourmand Angel Mugler.
The small perfume house of La Parfumerie Moderne hopes to catch something important and forgotten in the ocean of the past and to bring it onto the shores of the 21st century. Last year, La Parfumerie Moderne undertook its fourth attempt after releasing the charming lilac fragrance Desarmant, a solid leather perfume Cuir X, and a modern rose-patchouli fragrance No Sport. For the fourth time, the net took away from the past a warm lavender-amber fragrance named Années Folles (Crazy Years). The scent is cozy and warm, homey, as if it came from a parallel reality in which there were neither The Great Depression, nor the Second World War. In that reality there was no turbulence in the history of fragrance – all German and Italian perfume brands are alive and well, François Coty and Ernest Daltroff did not emigrate from France to the United States.
Thus, gradually, from Mouchoir de Monsieur Guerlain and Pour Un Homme de Caron, classical ideas such as Années Folles were born - a lavender perfume with an emphasized oriental amber base (tonka, benzoin and patchouli) with warm musk, reminiscent of a fur stole. And then, due to natural evolutionary methods, new descendants appeared out of the Années Folles – the immortal Eau Noire Christian Dior, and sunny and fresh Sunshine Amouage. There is the warm animalic sillage even in the rich fruity floral chypre of Parfums MDCI named Chypre Palatin, it`s hidden under all the chypre evolutions.
I was trying to understand why the warm, homelike and hearty Années Folles was named so inappropriately? I have not seen or heard anything roaring, mad, erratic, irrational or momentary in the perfume! No tantrums, no laughing, no Charleston, no rushing or alcoholic parties. What the?
Then I tried to imagine the perfume and suddenly I heard a soft voice of Années Folles and saw her eyes. The voice was female. She said, “Come hither, I do not bite”. She laughed softly and hoarsely, and her eyes were heavily blackened with kohl like a silent movie actress. She was obviously trying to pose as an exotic queen of the silent historical drama: whether the Egyptian Cleopatra, the Queen of Sheba, or Indian Mumtaz Mahal. She does not dance or move. Basically, she smiled and said nothing. Her weapon was her silent look. She just did not look anywhere but at me. That’s her way to approach and seduce.
And that was the last piece of the Années Folles puzzle. The perfume is about a pair. The start is a calm and reasonable man in a suit and volatile lavender cologne. The sillage is a silent movie actress in her sleeveless evening dress and fur stoles and never-to-be-forgotten oriental amber perfume. And they went into the night together, a conservative traditionalist man and a woman of sweet mystery.
Années Folles La Parfumerie Moderne
Top notes: French lavender, French thyme, Nutmeg;
Heart notes: French lavender absolute, Geranium, Vetiver;
Base note: French lavender absolute, Tonka bean absolute, Benzoin and Patchouli.

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