9 posts tagged "Kilian Hennessy"
Beauty Nostalgia is a weekly column on Beauty Counter in which we ask influencers, tastemakers, and some of our favorite industry experts to wax poetic on the sticks, salves, and sprays that helped shape who they are today.
The Pro: Kilian Hennessy, founder of By Kilian fragrances
The Product: “Since as long as I can go back in my mind, I have the memory of my grandfather applying Christian Dior Eau Sauvage in the morning, after his bath, once he was dressed. He would pour the perfume from his 500-ml. bottle in his hands and wet his hair with it—it was his gel, in a way! Eau Sauvage is, for me, the scent of elegance. It’s clean yet present. It’s aromatic yet feminine. It was created in 1966, I think, yet it’s timeless. It is the masterpiece of Edmond Roudnitska. But the way this scent smelled on my grandfather was unique, because it blended with the smell of his pipe. That combination is my Madeleine de Proust. My grandfather and I were very close. When he passed away two years ago, I felt that I lost my spiritual guide, my compass. His scent memory has stayed with me, because when I was close to him, I always felt protected. And perfume is as much about protection as it is about seduction. People tend to forget that. But this is why I carved a shield motif on my bottle, to help people feel secure. I haven’t created a cologne inspired by him yet, but my next collection is very much inspired by his world.”
To certain interior-minded members of the style set, Ryan Korban’s name precedes him. At 28, the designer who laid out Alexander Wang’s New York store on Mercer Street is also the man Jessica Stam, James Franco, Vanessa Traina, and Natasha Poly call when they’re in need of a specific sconce, an apartment overhaul, or the perfect lamp to tie a room together. His beauty expertise is less well known, although Korban certainly has opinions when it comes to home fragrance. “An interior space cannot be a successful one without a distinct scent. It’s what takes you from looking at a space to experiencing a space,” he says. It’s no wonder the sparks flew when Korban was introduced to cognac scion and perfume purveyor Kilian Hennessy last year through mutual friends. Like-minded in their aesthetic ventures, the two men got to work almost immediately on Ryan Korban by Kilian, a limited-edition blackcurrant, geranium, rose absolue, patchouli, and cedarwood-scented candle set in hand-painted, matte glass and capped with a black, silver-lined shagreen (a kind of stingray) top. The black glass vessel is filled with white aromatic wax, while the white vessel is conversely filled with black. Here, Style.com catches up with the new collaborators to talk keeping it classy with scented candles, and why any time is a good time to burn one down.
What’s the key to avoiding that stereotypical cloying and altogether outdated home fragrance model that favors overbearing distillation over something more subtle? Is it a question of specific notes or more an issue of formulation?
Ryan Korban: “I think you can never go wrong with something that has a rose base. I say this because I think rose has such a variety of scent. It can smell good with more of a classic light approach, and it can also be amazing with a deeper, spicy approach. I think the key is to always mix a little bit of the dark and spicy into more commercial scents to avoid a ‘Yankee [Candle]‘ situation.”
Kilian Hennessy: “The only way to keep it chic is to use beautiful and qualitative materials. All notes are possible [with home fragrances] as long as they are being worked in a very luxurious way, the correct use, and the highest quality—which oftentimes means expense.”
Is there a certain scented candle etiquette in your estimation as far as when, and how often, these things should be used?
RK: “I think anytime is appropriate [to burn a scented candle], and the more often the better. The scent begins to stick to your home. When I walk in the door it’s the first thing I do before I take off my shoes.”
KH: “If I could, I would have candles burning 24/7!!! I don’t use the same scent for every room. My bedroom smells of Tuberose (I love the narcotic, almost erotic feeling it brings), and my living room smells of Oud and Patchouli and Lavender (I like the elegance of these three candles combined).”
How did you come up with the scent combination here? Were you inspired by anything particular?
RK: “My design approach is really based on the idea of mixing something romantic and something sexy. This is an approach I take to any creative project I am working on. I really wanted all the notes in this fragrance to represent that idea.”
KH: “Ryan wanted since day one a candle that would evolve around rose and amber. I think what he really wanted was to achieve a delicate balance between fragility and strength, between feminine and masculine. In the end we created a scent that I feel achieves all that but through a very delicate balance of rose and leather.”
As this project boasts a very important design component, was it important that the candle base blend into any well-appointed decor?
KH: “I wanted an object that would reflect [Ryan's] world and be very far from existing candle holders. That’s why I proposed him a vase as a candle glass.”
RK: “We really wanted the packaging to be an object that you would keep after you finished burning the candle. The shagreen and the matte glass were all decisions based on creating something that felt like a beautiful object.”
Ryan Korban by Kilian, $165, available at Aedes de Venustas beginning November 2012.
Still stuck on what to buy for everyone on your list? Our favorite insiders share their picks for the best beauty gifts of the season. Ready, set, online shop.
Who: Nonie Creme, the nail art phenom who plays creative director for hip
lacquer brand Butter London.
What: “For my best girlfriends: Sephora makeup. Each girl gets a Champagne flute filled with a selection of beauty goodies and a baby bottle of Champagne that I then wrap in colorful cellophane with a bow. This year I bought gift sets of lip gloss and eye pencils at Sephora, then divided them up. My numero uno hubby is getting a Clarisonic—a manly, graphite one, with a corresponding face wash from Jack Black because frankly, I’m sick of watching him grind my pretty pink Mia into his beard stubble (ew).”
Sephora Ultra Shine Mini Lip Gloss Set, $22, and Sephora Nano Eyeliner Set,
$20, www.sephora.com; Clarisonic Skin Care Brush, $195, and Jack Black Daily
Facial Cleanser, $18, www.nordstrom.com.
Who: Kilian Hennessy, the always impeccably groomed and outfitted perfumer behind the eponymous By Kilian luxury fragrance line.
What: “By Kilian solid perfumes come in every scent of the L’Oeuvre Noire collection, so they are a great gift for anyone. I will give it to my two sisters for when they are out and about in Paris. The compact doesn’t scratch and is small enough to fit in their purses; plus it has a gorgeous mirror for touch-ups. For my business partner, Elisabeth Jones, I’m getting Fresh Brown Sugar—she is crazy about it! It offers her a luxurious way to wake up in the morning and I love the sweet smell all day. Who knows, maybe Santa will bring her the Brown Sugar Affair gift set.”
It’s easy to understand why the nine distinct eaux in Kilian Hennessy’s By Kilian L’Oeuvre Noire collection were actually dubbed “temptations.” Just look at their alluring monikers: Prelude to Love, Love, Beyond Love, Love and Tears, Taste of Heaven, Straight to Heaven, Back to Black, Liaisons Dangereuses, and Cruel Intentions. How’s that for a little olfactory plot development? For his fragrance novel’s much-anticipated denouement, Hennessy has just release the final entry in his ten-chapter tome, aptly called Sweet Redemption. Its name is fitting, considering the delicate cloud of orange blossom that dominates the scent thanks to the sturdy base notes that anchor it, including vanilla absolute, myrrh, and sour orange leaf absolute. The result is powerful but soft at the same time, which, as it turns out, is a very seductive combination and totally par for the course. As far as Hennessy’s plans for a sequel, it’s in the works, he says. “I already have a box and a story.”