Friday, October 3, 2008

Dear Serge Lutens: A Letter

October 3, 2008

Dear Serge Lutens,

I write because you have created some of the most beautiful and interesting perfumes that I own. I write because even though I was already a perfume fanatic when I first encountered your work, it was your masterpieces that made me view perfume as art. I look forward, in anxious anticipation, to your annual September releases. I write because I’m worried. Worried, because it’s been years since I was enamored with any of your new perfumes.

It started with Miel de Bois and we’ve been on a downward spiral ever since. I’m concerned because you seem fixated on gourmand fragrances, especially cinnamon. Rousse, arguably the best among your recent offerings, is a mediation on cinnamon. I like Rousse, mostly because its dry cinnamon and I like to wear it in the fall but I don’t love it. Louve seems to be a paired down Rahat Loukhoum, it’s very sweet, and I don’t like Rahat to begin with; Five O’Clock Au Gingembre is ‘meh’; Serge Noire is another sweet, cinnamon, spice-stew and now El Attarine is yet another sweet, spice-stew.

Serge, I remember us in the early years, we were so smitten you and I. Tubereuse Criminelle entranced me, I don’t even have the words to describe Tubereuse Criminelle; Fleurs d’Oranger made me swoon; Iris Silver Mist, a strange addiction, so daring, so artistic; Chergui, an intoxicating concoction, I can never get enough Chergui; Sa Majeste La Rose is the most remarkable rose fragrance I’ve ever smelled; Vetiver Oriental, an earthy salty green wonder; Santal Blanc, a sandalwood & cedar extravaganza; Fumerie Turque, a dreamy smoky scent and Muscs Koublai Khan, the most daring avant garde musk ever created.

I long for a new oriental from you and Mr. Sheldrake. I would be delighted by a chypre or a floral oriental or a dark earthy aroma with leather and edginess to spare. But, please, I beg you; don’t create any more spice stew…

Most sincerely yours,


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