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September 1 2014

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EXCLUSIVE: Eau De Revillon

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Showgoers in attendance at Andrew Heather’s clinic on luxury at Revillon’s Spring presentation today at the Hôtel de Crillon may have noticed something in the air—quite literally. As elaborate leather and fur pieces followed more elaborate leather and fur pieces down the runway, a metallic albeit spicy and fresh aroma was palpable. The idea was to create a sense of “fear and beauty” through smell, according to Dawn Goldworm of the 12.29 olfactory branding company, who met with Heather at his studio over the summer to talk about the prospect of scenting his second show for the storied house. “Andrew was inspired by the French court of Versailles, so playing with some of the aesthetic and olfactive elements of that era, we thought of talc, mercury, fur, and animal notes,” continued Goldworm, who partnered with legendary nose Francis Kurkdjian on the project, a man who knows his Versailles. In fact, no one is perhaps more well versed in the olfactory lore of the seventeenth-century palace than Kurkdjian, who was commissioned to reproduce Marie Antoinette’s perfume as well as a pair of her scented gloves for a work at the castle in 2005. “Based on this past experience, I was able to create the scent Andrew had in mind,” he points out of the resulting Siamese benzoin, rose absolute, orange flower, and Ceylon cinnamon eau that was wafted through the room—a dispersion method that presents a distinctly different formulation challenge than constructing a scent for the body. “Technically, you have to take into consideration the volume of the space, how the air flows, and if there is an existing scent or a scent to cover when creating a fragrance signature for a space,” Kurkdjian explains, adding that the key is “to capture [the fragrance's] aura and its psychology.” “You’re creating a smell, rather than a perfume,” Goldworm elaborates. “It should not remind one of perfume but rather of an emotion, to create a fresh experience, a new memory”—and make this collection that much harder to forget.

Photo: Marcus Tondo/Gorunway.com

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