As winter draws to an end, there’s no better way to welcome a new season than with a new scent. For those who want to take the romance of cosying up with a good novel with them wherever they go, BYREDO’s new perfume Bibliothèque will prove positivelydreamy.
Peach, plum and vanilla notes fuse to evoke that unforgettable scent of fresh pages, strengthened by hints of patchouli and leather. Originally a candle and then a room spray, the Eau de Parfum will be released for a limited time only.
Bibliothèque Eau de Parfum (100ml / £150) is available from March.
Admission: I used to hate gourmand fragrances. Not spicy ones but obvious scents that smelt of chocolate and caramel and vanilla. Oh and fruity florals were an absolute bugbear. Why? Well in all honesty I felt they were too obvious, too commercial, too lowest common denominator (yes it was a bit snobbish of me I admit). I felt they were predominantly marketed and aimed at young girls with unsophisticated tastes who wanted to smell good enough to eat. Who would want to smell like something edible? I did at the age of 18 – I used to wear the long defunct Body Shop Mango oil and also the Vanilla and Dewberry oil. With the vanilla I thought I smellled as good as bowl of fresh custard.
How naïve I was! The grown up me found gourmand scents totally unacceptable. But I’ve had something of a damascene conversion. I think this is because some of my favourite indie perfume brands have been making gourmands recently that are a little bit different. They are not your usual fruity florals or toffee caramel concoctions. Byredo’s Pulp does smell of exotic fruit, but it also smells of green leaves and stems and slightly sour but fresh foliage. So it’s a kind of interesting riff on the gourmand genre. Likewise Tom Ford’s Tobacco Vanille – yes, it smells of vanilla and cocoa beans and other delicious edibles but there’s also a tinge of smoke, a dirty gentleman’s clubby woodyness about it that lends it a sophistication and hauteur that a straight vanilla wouldn’t have. Lastly, Etat Libre d’Orange’s Like This, Tilda Swinton fragrance is equally off-key. It smells of carrots and gingerbread and almonds – not your obvious epicurean fragrance by a long chalk. So, thanks to the niche perfumers gourmand fragrances are changing. I love these new oddball gourmands, if only the blockbuster brands would pay heed.