Ladies and gentlemen of the jury, please re-consider the case of Bois Blond, the limited edition offering from Parfumerie Generale. Mrs. Ina has reviewed this scent in the past, giving it a lukewarm feedback. Why, o why?! Now I must step in and defend this beauty of a fragrance, a work of olfactory art, unique and unforgettable.
“On the first country morning wet verandah is floating in green underwater dusk.The door to the porch is open wide, cold breeze is coming from the garden and loud hollow buckets are ready for us to run with to the lake. To sleek, dazzling, lake, in which the whole world dropped and reflected on an early morning. The old bucket will gurgle, and the faraway echo will gurgle, too. You will scoop up cold deep silence, take a piece of solid smooth surface and sit on fallen tree for awhile.” (Tatyana Tolstaya, “Fire and Dust”).
Bois Blond opens up with a cold, bitter and almost peppery and pungent blast of grasses and galbanum. The top notes have it all: the moist dark forest, the blades of last year’s grass smelling warm and familiar, the dryness of a fallen cedar trunk, covered in moss. All these elements combine to produce almost a physical olfactory sensation of being in that environment, being there on a cold summer morning. If the opening of Bois Blond had a color, it would be translucent, “underwater” green. As the middle notes step in, the scent becomes strangely comforting. The chilly and pungent top notes settle, the grasses become more aromatic and with blond tobacco accentuating dry hay and cereals, the fragrance achieves almost a textural feel of these components. Here, as we bury our faces into the forest hay, we realize that it holds the promise of a hot summer day, that the warmth is buried deep inside these piles of dried grass. The wet hay has a heart of gold. Soon, the “underwater” green is penetrated by husky, golden, shameless stream of sunlight. Amber and musk come to the forefront, forming a very comforting, slightly sweet and, yes, sexy scent. It is a smell of skin of a loved one, skin that is still holding memories of walk in the dark chilly forest, of lying on a moist hay, of sitting by the cold lake, waiting for water to warm up so you can take a plunge.
I also would like to note that Bois Blond does not have a feel of a conventional perfume as there is nothing “perfumey” about it. However, it is not a caricature fragrance in any way, designed to mimic the exact combination of elements to convey a feeling. Bois Blond is not following in the footsteps of Demeter or I Hate Perfume. Parfumerie Generale takes the creation of environment through olfactory sensation to a whole different level. While all elements are there, they are blended seamlessly and elegantly, with one note underscoring, emphasizing or moderating others, rendering this creation extremely wearable.
By Elena Singh
22 comments April 17th, 2007