Thursday, January 1, 2009
A Letter to Dominique Ropion
Dear Dominique Ropion,
Two of your works of utter genius have, over the years, come to smell like “me.” First, there was Givenchy Amarige, which I wore non-stop in the mid-90’s, then, more recently, came Carnal Flower, which is so breathtaking and addictive that I’ve owned and drained 2 large bottles since 2006. (2 large bottles might seem like a bigger feat if you knew how many bottles I have).
Just this year, I found Caron Aimez Moi and Lalique Le Parfum and I will never be without either of these gems. Both Aimez Moi and Lalique Le Parfum are slightly less overtly vivacious compared with your other creations but each spotlight that trademark Ropion gorgeousness.
Thierry Mugler Alien is among the only jasmine fragrances that I love. In fact, it took a Ropion jasmine, in the form of Alien, to let me see and wear the beauty of a jasmine fl-oriental. Dominique, I didn’t even realize Alien was your work until recently, I should have known all along!
I’m still considering one of your creations, Une Fleur de Cassie. I haven’t ventured outside of the house wearing this yet ~ and I’m not sure if I love it or hate it ~ but Cassie has engaged me, held my attention, and it won’t let me go.
Vetiver Extraordinaire is just that, an extraordinary interpretation of vetiver. It stands out in the crowd, it sings, it’s a masterpiece.
Dominique, do your creations reflect your own personality? I admire the gregariousness of your scents. I enjoy the voluptuous, flirty, sexy, femininity captured in your perfumes. Your fragrances aren’t shy by any means, they love the attention, they’re comfortable in the spotlight, but they’re always warm and kind. Ropion perfumes aren’t introspective or subtle, they’re sociable, to be enjoyed in the company of others.
Rather than following the modern trend toward more discreet, sparse fragrances, you’ve continued to create big, multi-faceted, exaggerated scents. For this, I salute you. To me, a good perfume projects and has sillage. Your works can be counted on for proper projection and sillage. To this extent, your art contains a practical element, and I couldn’t be more delighted.
Carnal Flower, Alien & Amarige each strike me as exaggerated versions of flowers. Carnal Flower is tuberose under a microscope with big chunks of imagination; Alien does the same for jasmine and Amarige does the same for mimosa & orange blossom. The exaggerated flower analogy makes me think of Georgia O’Keefe and her flower paintings. O’Keefe painted enormous renditions of flowers, as if under a fantasy microscope, so a white petal wasn’t just a big white petal, but instead the detail of all the colors that came together to affect that beautiful white; the blue, pink and gray along with the white.
Dominique, this was meant as a note of gratitude and admiration. You’re a genius perfumer. And, just as important, never lose your gift of exaggerated beauty, and do continue creating fragrances that project and last.
PS: if you’re taking requests these days, I’m still hankering for a gorgeous osmanthus, or another mimosa jewel or perhaps an intriguing linden? Just thought I’d ask…