For the Love of Orris: Bottega Veneta, Tom Ford Violet Blonde, Chanel No 19 Poudre
Smelling new releases shows that orris trend is here to stay. Bottega Veneta, Tom Ford and Chanel all feature it prominently in their recent launches. Certainly, in the three fragrances in question, the accord is rendered differently. I describe it to myself simply in terms of thinner-thicker, colder-warmer.
The thickest and the warmest orris is n Bottega Veneta's new EDP. From the ads to the composition, everything is done supremely elegantly. The perfume is both opulent and a "skin-scent", with orris enhancing the expensive, velvety-suede-y aspect of the blend. Expensive, yet subtle. Old money.
Predictably, Tom Ford's Violet Blonde is rather more nouveau riche, but I like it a lot all the same. From Laura's lips in the ads to something vaguely fruity, there is a dose of vulgarity here that some will find thrilling, some will dislike. Orris is as prominent and thick as in BV, but is a touch cooler, the color of cold neon purple. Jasmine provides a nicely animalic nuance, and the fruitiness, probably from the same jasmine plus mandarine, is, to me, an interesting part of the composition. Those who were turned off by the fruity accord in Black Orchid, might sense and dislike it here too.
Chanel No 19 Poudre is the coldest and most transparent orris of the three. Tom did not love it. I can't say I do, but I like it. The creators toned down the greenness of galbanum and the animalic quality in the original and brought up a notch the powdery side of iris. To me, there is not enough powder here to justify the 'poudre' in the name. No 19 Transparente would be a more fitting description. Very wearable, impeccable in any situation. Could be much worse, eh?