Monday, April 6, 2020

Gucci Memoire d'Une Odeur: fragrance review

A comrade of mine in fragrance said, taking the 2019 fragrance launches in retrospect, "In today’s world, chamomile will never be a major perfume trend, unless this world does a 180 degree turn. It’s not that its extracts smell bad: it’s the mythology that comes with it. The most successful things in modern perfumery are sensual — white flowers, sweet stuff. Chamomile, with its tea and eczema cream connotations, is about as sensual as baby's colic. So, no sex in chamomile, but a lot of other things — calm, serenity, memories (hence the name of Gucci’s perfume.) Memories of that field behind Grandma’s house, of that distant time someone special took such good care of you." She was talking about Gucci Mémoire d’une Odeur, i.e. memory of a smell.


The fragrance was an innovation based on a concept by the new creative director at Gucci, Alessandro Michele, whom we have to thank for the innovative outlook that gave us recently niche-quality smelling Gucci Guilty Absolute for men and the worthwhile Gucci Bloom collection of scents.

 “Everything comes from my obsession with scents: my memory is primarily olfactive so, for me, my sense of smell is my memory. I thought that, deep down, perfume is that thing that even with your eyes closed, brings you to a precise moment in space and time. When we began to work on Gucci Mémoire d’une Odeur, I tried to imagine the recollection of a scent that couldn’t easily be identified; a hybrid scent that resembles memory as much as possible”..

Gucci Mémoire d’une Odeur is an elixir that transcends gender by its individuality, to establish a new olfactive family, Mineral Aromatic. The transcendent accord features unexpected and enigmatic ingredients, and is defined by a note of Roman chamomile.
Alessandro Michele envisioned this particular flower inside the scent, blended by master perfumer Alberto Morillas.

The famous perfumer mentioned upon launching that ”the musky mineral accord is the keystone of the fragrance: it links all the other olfactive elements together with pure softness. I had to think quite carefully about why Alessandro chose chamomile. When I started to work with the scent of chamomile itself, then I understood. “No one had done it before. Chamomile is known all over the world. Everyone has smelt it at some point, but as a dream, a memory of childhood, something timeless, and never in a fragrance. This flower is much underestimated and is a plant with an exceptional olfactive signature.”

 I'm thinking that the world has since indeed done a 180 degree turn, nothing is the same anymore, and the feeling of someone taking good care of us is such a precious, precious thought that Gucci's Memoire d'une Odeur has become sort of an amulet against evil. Its softly musky, clean trail is a promise of a happy ending in a tangled bedtime story.

Memoire d'une Odeur by Gucci is a special breed apart, even among modern fragrances. A most refined, botanical take on the clean whisper of a scent of woods and chamomile that can be so popular for discreet company. The scent is best retained on fabric (and paper); it tends to seemingly vanish on the skin in a short time which prompts complaints from consumers. In reality it's still there, but the big musk molecules are too large to be perceptible by some individuals.

 The sparse bottle is inspired by a vintage Gucci fragrance bottle discovered by Alessandron Michelle and used for Mémoire d’une Odeur’s bottle. Grooved like a column from an ancient world, the bottle casts a refined silhouette in heavy transparent light green glass, crowned with shiny gold cap. Printed gold foil frames the label, revealing the Gucci logo together with the name of the fragrance.

“The packaging comes from the past, inspired by an old Gucci perfume from the early 90s. I didn’t want the bottle to take on a shape or size that is too feminine or too masculine because the perfume could be very much for women or very much for men,” said Alessandro Michele.

What can we say? We're smitten. 

1 comment:

  1. Anonymous03:01

    I love the images you chose to support your beautiful, evocative writing. Count me in as a chamomile fan-it used to grow on my lawn, and I also love the book The Camomile Lawn, which is used evocatively and eroticly throughout the novel. Mineral scents appeal to me, too, and that bottle is gorgeous. I hope you have a pleasant evening in Greece xo Carole


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