How I created my very own fragrance
In life, I belong to the category of people considered “over-sensitive”, especially with odors. Result: I don’t wear perfume, I can even get sick if I smell “Flower” by Kenzo. And if I have to dine with someone wearing so much perfume at the table, then I would seriously lose my smelling senses !
Anyway, you get what I mean ! I got a bit carried away.
Buuut ! I absolutely love discrete smells or the ones that remind me of a certain emotion. Don’t you ? Like the chewing gum from my childhood (Malabar !!!), the Ceylan tea that takes me away on a journey, or the very comforting smell of Serge Lutens’ “L’eau” that my husband wears. I’m the one who offered it to be sure I can stand it. Not my husband, the perfume ! And I have to say that if I had to choose one for myself, this would be it !
The other day, I had an appointment just across from the Eiffel Tower, with Isabelle Ferrand director of “Fifth Sense”, the first French center for creating perfumes and training in olfactory knowledge. She works alongside a team with extraordinary savoir-faire, who advises large houses such as Chanel, Hermes, Dior or Givenchy. I had a notebook in my hand and was asking questions when she suddenly said to me:
“If there is one perfume that we can recognize throughout our life, it is that of our mother. Wearing perfume means giving your children access to an imperishable memory.“
Bam! She really hit a chord. My mother puts “Ivresse” from Yves Saint Laurent since forever. And I can recognize it between a thousand! I could even fall asleep in the bottle someday until I feel safe. All of a sudden, I felt like I was assigned a mission. It was my turn to pass on the baton ! And as I didn’t have anything in hand, I was going to create mine. That is how I found myself at the atelier Création de Parfum.
As soon as I arrived, it hit me how much perfume became everyone’s interest, from 7 to 77 year olds ! Some moms came with their daughters to “share an activity”. Others like Paul-Romain received this course as a gift. We’re all very different ! Starting with the perfume we are used to (or not ! Don’t forget that I’m here !!) wearing.
“I wear “Jardin sur un toit” from Hermès. I admit that I picked it for the name without even smelling it !” Said Bénédicte laughing.
We move on to a theoretical course to understand everything about what makes up a perfume: a bit of mind, heart and essence. An opportunity to smell every olfactory composition such as the aromas, leather, fresh floral, marine or spicy scents. Among these, modern fern or the smell of leather make my heart skip a beat, but I go on. A special weakness for the fresh floral, the powdered and the musky. And that’s me ! Finally … Easy on the flowers still huh !
The class is focused but still so friendly ! And it’s easy to say but the perfume, is something chic ! We’re all so happy with our new perfume skilled skin.
We then receive a paper to develop our own formula. And that’s when the stress takes over the room !
Because everyone wants to get it right. It’s funny ! We only have 4 possible trials to arrive to the final formula. (Well yes, we can’t spend all day !) Three drops of one, 5 drops of another depending on our preferences. Luckily, Laetitia Corre, a perfumer, guides us through and puts us back on the right track when we get away from what we wanted. I think she really managed to set us … I find myself telling my colleague “Oh no this is so not you !” Or to receive in return a very nice “Your formula suits you so well !”
I realized that the perfume we pick says a lot about the kind of person we are.
Allez, And now, it’s time to wrap it! Aram, assistant perfumer is responsible for retrieving our formulas and preparing them in small bottles in the laboratory. We must also choose a name for it ! As I know who it is for, I have my name already picked out.
I am thrilled with this experience ! Now that I’ve found the formula, I’ll have to look for a nice bottle for it. If you know a French craftsman who makes some, let me know !
And you ? What perfume do you wear ? Don’t hesitate to share with a comment below !
And if you’d like to know everything about the composition of your perfume, or to make some research according to your interest, you just have to visit l’Olfathèque ! This online olfactory library is so much fun !