3 posts tagged "Paul Birardi"
Since expanding their well-loved boutique brand to include fragrances in 2009, Odin‘s Eddy Chai and Paul Birardi have had a steady stream of olfactory wins, teaming up with the master perfumers at Drom on six unisex perfumes, as well as corresponding scented candles two years later. Their success is partially due to a palate for exotic essences, as well as an increasingly eclectic range of different muses that tends to weigh heavily on well-loved travel destinations. It’s somehow fitting, then, that their latest eau is called Roam. With roots in the Amazon, specifically Amazonian incense resins, which are the standout feature of this flacon, the scent evokes the damp darkness of the rainforest via additional essences of bittersweet saffron, wild coffee flower, coconut milk, and ebony woods. It’s smoky and rich—and it could wear you if you’re not careful. But that in itself should be incentive enough to take it on, especially for true fragrance fanatics who are in the market for a challenge.
After successfully dabbling in home fragrances with four gorgeous votive versions of their existent unisex eaux, Odin’s Paul Birardi and Eddy Chai have turned their attention back to perfumes of the spritzable variety. Just in time for summer, the duo has set their sights on crafting 06 Amanu, a fresh green fragrance. Like its predecessors, it’s made for both boys and girls, which is nothing short of a challenge considering that true green notes—resins, saps, mosses, and the like—are typically reserved for men’s scents. But in the same way that they managed to turn their floral-heavy, 04 Petrana into something that appealed to both women and their male counterparts, the boutique owners hit just the right balance between crisp and sweet, warm and smoky. Central notes of green galbanum, jasmine sambac, and aged cedar leaf are tempered by wafts of blood orange, magnolia, and amber wood, so the juice goes on with a burst of zest and evolves into something soft and almost powdery on the skin, never becoming too dank or heavy. It’s unclear whether my s.o. will spray this one liberally onto his pulse points (I just got him into toner; cologne may be a ways away), but he will definitely enjoy it on mine.
Boutique owners Paul Birardi and Eddy Chai enjoy a reputation among the downtown fashion set as a duo with a collectively good eye for trends and an ability to know what their customers want. Odin, their men’s store in Nolita (its women’s equivalent, Pas de Deux, is in the East Village), stocks choice items from collections like 3.1 Phillip Lim, Shipley & Halmos, and Rag & Bone accordingly. It was shoppers’ olfactory interests that compelled their latest endeavor. “The way people react to fragrance is inspiring,” Birardi says, referencing the unique relationship between scent and emotion. In order to offer their own interpretation of that visceral experience, they did something unexpected: They decided to launch a unisex perfume—three, actually. Already big fans of the Comme des Garçons incense collection, Birardi and Chai sought to do something similarly effective, with their own spin. Working with perfumers from Drom, they designed three unique eaux, each of which brings something different to the table. 01 Nomad has a warm, spicy sweetness to it courtesy of juniper berries, Himalayan cedar leaves, and West Indian sandalwood, while 02 Owari, the freshest of the bunch, uses mandarin and grapefruit essences to temper the richness of golden amber and Tonkin musk. 03 Century has hints of cypress—a masculine note that is singularly responsible for drawing us to men’s fragrances over women’s—which are softened by mint, vetiver, and oak moss for a complex, well-rounded finish. They launch next month at Odin and its online store and are hopefully just the beginning of Birardi and Chai’s adventures in beauty.