Les Editions de Parfums Frédéric Malle have ventured into home fragrance lately (here & more below on this post), but the fine fragrance department was seemingly neglected for a while. Portrait of a Lady, their newest feminine fragrance is going to change all that, introducing another coveted item in the niche line. The name is of course inspired by the same-named novel by Henry James from 1881, focusing on a heroine who afronts her overwhelming destiny with all the tragic mood of a classical Greek tragedy and set in a context which clashes the Old and New World sensibilities to great aplomb.
Composed by Dominique Ropion (who had collaborated with Malle on Une Fleur de Cassie, Vétiver Extraordinaire, Carnal Flower and Géranium pour Monsieur), Portrait of a Lady, the upcoming F.Malle fragrance, is centered around rose alongside spicy notes of clove, cinnamon and incense, developing a complex sillage that is promising to be oscillating between an oriental and a chypre. After all the F.Malle Une Rose is indeed almost chypré already. The woody note in Portrait of a Lady is patchoulol, a terpene extracted from natural patchouli, whose one isomer is responsible for the scent of patchouli itself. This refinement allows to avoid some of the technical problems of using the unfractured patchouli and leads to a purer scent. Rose and patchouli have been a beloved theme of modern perfumery in the last decade with several worthy speciments in niche fragrances, from Voleur de Roses by L'Artisan to Lady Vengeance from Juliette has a Gun. But the orientalised take and the spice addition alongside the smokiness of incense seem like a novel take that seems exciting and promising. Could it prove to be the perfect Gothic rose fragrance that sometimes people are seeking?
Portrait of a Lady will retail from 145 to 215 euros for 50ml and 100ml respectively, available from November 2010.
In the home fragrancing front, ‘Diffuseur Solitaire’, a non electric minimally designed new gadget, shaped like an aluminum cylinder in either black or metal-finish adapts itself to confined spaces. The more modest price point (compared to the 360 euros that were asked for Fleur Mécanique) is another advantage. It is for the moment offered in re-worked scents of ‘Coffee Society’ and ‘Saint des Saints’ (review on the link) which were originally developed for the scented candles in the F.Malle line. But the recharges of the Fleur Mécanique line have also profited from a lifting: a new concentration extrême, touted as more than 50 % is being presented as "+" version.
All pious at the Malle shrine, enter!
Diffuseur Solitaire : 85 euros ; Recharge "+" : 55 à 75 euros, available on the oficial site editionsdeparfums.com/
Related reading on Perfumeshrine: Upcoming releases, Frederic Malle news & reviews
pic via osmoz