Monday, 19 July 2010
Quintessentially Perfume is a new beautifully bound book about scent. It discusses many of the great fragrance houses, their history and therefore the history of modern scent, it looks at perfume bottles and the people who have made fragrance in the past, who are making it now and what the future holds for perfume.
Books about perfume are rare and I treasure them so opening the envelope containing this was like Christmas morning in July for me. This really is a book to covet, it's beautifully presented and has a handsome list of contributors from the creators like Linda Pilkington of Ormonde Jayne to Bertrand_Duchaufour who has lately been working with Penhaligon's and L'Artisan Parfumeur to the connoisseurs of fragrance like Roja Dove (who of course now has his own house as well as a collection of scent that makes me weep with wanting) to some of the established scribes of scent.
The book is not meant to be a history of all scents and it doesn't cover all the houses you may know in depth- but it isn't pretending to an encyclopedia perfumica so I think that is absolutely fine- and it does include some very niche brands which it is nice to see getting space alongside the greats like Dior and Guerlain.
I suppose it is a guide to perfume for those with taste and style. It is also a book that encourages and nurtures the idea of perfume as a very fine craft or even art form which is ever evolving. It offers us the chance to hear from modern perfumers first hand, perhaps for the first time in book form and I can imagine it having good cross over appeal because where some books on perfume have perhaps only been for the already initiated this can be approached on many knowledge levels. This is a fantastic read for anyone who is interested in perfume or luxury- and anyone who enjoys a sumptuous book.