diptyque revisits the patchouli theme, but refines it to reveal its most exquisite beauty. Combining three different extractions, each from a sustainable supply chain managed by Givaudan on the Indonesian island of Sulawesi. A persistent vibration, like an ongoing echo of a musical wake.
Brought back from India, or Kathmandu or Colombo, this primitive patchouli, distilled without precautions before being incorporated into a rustic lipid, was not, let’s admit it, the most subtle. But despite its moth repellent tendency (which the leaves were long used for) its instantly identifiable scent hid nothing, like a statement. Henna, kohl, patchouli: A signature!
From the Orient, young people also brought back sounds, unusual harmonies and peaceful music. Sitars, tablas and wah-wah guitars. A way for them to share the resonance and rhythm of the (new) world. If for Jack Kerouac the main in nuance of the “beat generation” came from jazz, for the post-WWII Baby Boomers that followed, it was more the haunting effects of psychedelic music that brought together the incomparable “flower power”.
Tempo, written for diptyque by its long-time friend, the perfumer Olivier Pescheux, revisits the patchouli theme, but (of course) reinventing it to reveal its most exquisite beauty and artfully combining three different extractions, each from a sustainable supply chain managed by Givaudan on the Indonesian island of Sulawesi.
A persistent vibration, like an ongoing echo of a musical wake. A bit of moist earth deep within a primitive forest, amidst a fray of ferns, beneath the towering teak trees, laced in the mysterious shadows of the ancient endemic tribes that still live there. They call it Nilam. Powerful pinnacles of remarkably pure woody notes (softened by a maté absolute) almost camphoric, edged in green (bolstered by violet leaves). Leading to the slightest impression of wild cocoa beans. It resists and embellishes all that chimes in. Pink peppercorns, bergamot and fresh jasmine add peps and colour. An amber accord gives it irresistible sex-appeal. A bouquet of clary sage (the plant version of ambergris) and ambrox (extract from the same aromatic leaves) that some adore to the point where they use it raw: Warm, velvety, cedary, imperceptibly animal – reminiscent of the softness of suede. And musks to hem it all in with air. The olfactory accident? The contrast between its tangy character and the thickness of the violet leaves and the (mossy) aspects of the patchouli!
Buy Tempo here/ kjøp her
FLEUR DE PEAU
Meticulously selected by Olivier Pescheux, the musks take the lion’s share of the spotlight, dancing between leathery, powdery and fruity facets – one minute wild, the next peach fuzzy like the angelic nape of a chubby baby’s neck.
Speaking of musks...The 1960’s was also a time of great empathy toward Hindu rituals, a spiritual wave swept over the world. Yoga, transcendental meditation, vegetarianism...People began sitting in virtuous circles, chanting the “aum” mantra as long as possible, making love everywhere to everyone. The Summer of Love!
The smell of skin: the smell of musk. Sometimes natural (imported from Tibet where it is still available) but usually synthetic, the most beloved smell that echoes (almost to a tee) that of lovers’ bodies: Navel, back of the knee, palm of the hand. That which, on an olfactory level is rather akin to the soft, surprising scent of the fringed nubuck vests young bare-chested men used to wear.
But what’s the trick to making a musk fragrance in today’s world without debasing oneself? By opting to include a hint of iris, matte and cool, long lasting and deep, like yesteryear’s glove makers used to perfume their leather.
Opening with Italian notes of mandarin, orange and bergamot, and a dash of pink peppercorns that hover between petals and seeds. Aldehydes. Everything awakens, and fuses. Then, an unusual contrast (the happy accident) follows, round and moist.
Among the captivating hues there’s Ambrettolide, which gives a muskiness to the ambrette seeds (as their name indicates), which in turn act as linking agents lacing together the carrot and angelica seeds, so close to the iris essence, similarly pulled from between the stones. A joyous splice.
This then cleverly dissolves to an earthy array of steadfast, ferruginous rhizomes, almost reminiscent of a wine cellar but ever so aristocratic and absolutely refined. Perfect timing for the graceful Turkish roses to arrive on the scene and brighten this introverted heart. Closing with an infusion of ambergris, not only for its ink and iodine accents but also to enhance the lively expression of this Peace & Love perfume.
Buy Fleur de Peau here/ kjøp her.