mardi 25 mai 2010

Vamp à NY by Olivia Giacobetti for Honoré des Prés: 50 samples to give away (and a review)


I know you’re all going to dash off to drop a comment without reading the review. So do that, but be sure to come back and find out what you’re letting yourself in for…

The 50 lucky recipients of the Vamp à NY sample giveaway will be announced on Wednesday May 26 in the evening, Paris time.

The guy sitting in front of me in the metro is lifting up his head from his newspaper for the fifth since he did a double-take when I slipped past him. No, my feminine pulchritude hasn’t suddenly gone up several notches in the heat wave. It’s the tuberose effect, pure and simple: I am in the eye of a magnetic storm unleashed by the solar wind of Vamp à NY, one of the three new fragrances composed by Olivia Giacobetti for the indie organics house of Honoré des Prés.

It isn’t just me. A floor up from the Grande Épicerie du Bon Marché, people are stopping in their tracks, u-turning to come back for a sniff at the Honoré des Prés display with its 10-feet high ziggurat of cardboard coffee cups (in which the perfumes are boxed). A middle-aged gentleman demands to be spritzed on the spot, and expresses amused dismay when he learns he is now wafting a scent called Vamp. By the time I’ve spent a quarter hour hovering over the table, three bottles have found new homes.

The marketing of Honoré des Prés is obviously spot-on for the moneyed Left Bank bohemians who patronize the designer brands of this section – Isabel Marant, Zadig & Voltaire, APC… Organic? Check. Quirky, New York-inspired presentation? Check. Funky names? Vamp à NY, Love Coco, I heart les Carottes… Check. The display table is set as though it were offering a taste of some new brand of juice, so curious customers amble up -- if you’re not being ambushed by some atomizer-wielding demonstrator, you’re more likely to hold out your wrist. People are sniffing, smiling, striking up conversations with fellow shoppers. Some are coming back with their friends.

Clearly, these are scents with a sense of fun. But they are also technical feats, and, despite their simplicity and quirkiness, accomplished perfume compositions.

Olivia Giacobetti’s first collection for Honoré des Prés garnered mixed reviews, namely because the materials chosen had rather poor longevity on skin (except for the smoky Chaman’s Party). She may now have a richer palette to work from, since organics is a quickly-developing market, but it’s more than that: she’s found her stride, and has evolved a new, specific register for the genre.

I’ll get back to the other two fragrances – the carrot and the coconut-coriander -- in another post. I just haven’t had the time to test them, because I’ve been wearing Vamp à NY for four days running in the midst of a Paris heat wave and I can’t get enough of it.

Yes, another tuberose, and, unsurprisingly, a radically different one from Bertrand Duchaufour’s Nuit de Tubéreuse. After all, Duchaufour and Giacobetti are two of the most distinctive, idiosyncratic authors working today, and even when taking on such a scenery-chewing material as tuberose absolute, they manage to stamp it with their signature. Where Duchaufour pulls the note into the dark green night-glow of roots and earth, Giacobetti sends it soaring in tropical trade winds. If you love tuberose, believe me, you need both.

Olivia Giacobetti has seldom dealt with white floral notes – the lily in Passage d’Enfer, the orange blossom of Agnès b. le b. and L’Artisan L’été en douce come to mind – and she’s certainly never done full-on white floral sexy. In Vamp à NY, she manages to open up the creaminess of the flower, to infuse it with her trademark sense of space. Ethereal Olivia has gone carnal, but she’s doing it on her terms, after tweaking the scent for a year. Clearly, living in New York suits her fine.

Vamp à NY opens with a combustible burst of rum – rum being a logical partner to the coconut facets of tuberose, and a note Giacobetti has played with, in a very different tone, for Lubin Idole. As the rum evaporates, it carries a gust of fresh, green vanilla; vanilla-as-orchid, its banana facets echoed by ylang-ylang and tiaré effects (as a point of reference, this isn’t unlike Jean-Claude Ellena’s treatment of the accord in Vanille Galante). The tuberose, somehow cleft from its wintergreen coolness and heavy animalic notes, rides on this tropical breeze in an airy, expansive, joyful sillage.

But Vamp à NY is a two-tier scent and it is nearer the skin that it unfolds its narcotic charms. The slow-burning base of vanilla, Tolu and Peru balsam, so hot it feels as though it’s been rubbed with pimiento, is truly addictive. It rises in whiffs when you move; in fact, the scent seems to be in constant flux, disappearing one minute and turning up unexpectedly to display another facet: solar/tropical; green/banana; creamy/floral; burning/balsamic. Sprayed in hair, the vanilla notes hang on for a day, but as this is all natural, i.e. without the ubiquitous synthetic musks that give volume and tenacity to the other notes, it’s pretty much one of those scents you have to douse yourself with to get the full effect.

Radiant and hot, breezy and smoldering, Vamp à NY rewrites the codes of white-floral seduction in tender, easy-going tones. You won’t find this vamp slinking around, trussed up in Dita’s kit: her eye-liner is smudged from laughing to tears, her breasts may be rolling freely under her white cotton shirt, and God knows where she mussed up her hair. She gives as good as she gets. And whatever that is, it’s fun.


Ok, so I've pretty much got all my winners, but toss in a comment anyway (now that you've actually got time to read the review) and I just might convince Mr. Honoré des Prés to toss in a few more samples...


Picture: I don't usually post packshots, but since you won't be seeing this until next Fall, here's how Vamp à NY is presented.

92 commentaires:

  1. Hey, I was the first?

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  2. I do hope I'll be on time this time. :)
    And now I'm off to read the review. :)

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  3. Wait. It didn't take my comment! Pick me! Pick me (text is small now!)

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  4. hotlanta linda25 mai 2010 à 18:59

    Luck be a Lady!!!

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  5. Sample this way please! Octavian's review already made me seriously interested in this, and now your review adds to that. Thanks for this offer!

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  6. Giacobetti!!!!

    Can't wait for the read!

    Marcus

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  7. Well, I'm from Miami, and I love the gardens there, particularly ylang and jasmine, so I'd love to try this.
    And natural? Yes,please!
    -Marla

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  8. I would love to try it. Thank you. :)

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  9. I'd love to try this as well...
    Thanks!!!

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  10. Love Olivia Giacobetti ! Pls put my name in.

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  11. Actually, I have read the review and commented later on, haha.
    Sounds lovely- read Octavian's impressions today as well. Thought they are coming bit sooner? Would love to try Vamp a NY!

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  12. Am I too late?
    -- Gretchen

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  13. Looking forward to having a chance to try this.

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  14. Fun sounds great! Hope I get to try it.

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  15. Would love to try this. Barbara

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  16. I would love to try this!

    -Lauren P.

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  17. Please sign me up for the drawing! Thank you, Denyse!

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  18. And now I HAVE read the review and I think I might faint. Oh, it is a very good time to be a tubey-lover, isn't it? Soon I will have an entire wardrobe of tuberose scents.

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  19. I'm pretty sure I'm too late!

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  20. I would love to try this scent!

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  21. What a generous offer! I'm probably too late but if not then I'd love to try be in with the chance to try these.

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  22. Vamp sounds exciting looking forward to reviewing
    Thanks
    Maria

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  23. Sign me up for a sample please =)

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  24. Ce commentaire a été supprimé par l'auteur.

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  25. Holy cow, I'm feeling the heat just from reading that description.

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  26. Please put me in ! Thanks

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  27. I'm late, but still trying. : )

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  28. My heart is pounding, D! I had in my silly, ditzy way, set my mental clock for 7pm OUR time today - Vancouver time!!!!! I just twigged thirty seconds ago and see I was number 44. Hurrah! My fingers are trembling just typing this. ;-)

    I look forward very much to join the discussion once I've sampled. Now, back to you review today, which I look forward to reading.

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  29. Just got home from teaching in hot, hot Texas - please choose me!!!
    Mellisu

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  30. They sound lovely. Count me in, and thank you.

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  31. What an absolutely inspired review, D! I wonder if this is a Tuberose for non-Tuberose Lovers like moi? Souonds like it could be -- can't wait to sniff this on-site! See you soon!!!

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  32. Giving this a shot, though I think I'm too late!

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  33. I've been reading a bunch of reviews on this new series from HdP, and am really anxious to try them. I have Sexy Angelic, and LOVE it!!! Some say it doesn't last, and I know this is a challenge for all-natural scents; but I find if I spray it on fabric, it lasts a long time! Looking forward to trying these. Hope HdP extends the offer to those of us who are late to comment. :-)

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  34. WELL. Clearly I wasn't reading that time converter thing rightly, because I was expecting to see this at 3pm my time (and it's 2:43 now).

    Luckily, I read all the way to the bottom, taking in the notes "tolu and peru balsams," and I'm breathing a sigh of relief at missing out on this one. Tolu is a big nausea factor for me, and outweighs the appeal of lovely tuberose.

    Hope the winners enjoy!

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  35. I missed it! Darn surprise houseguests! Oh well... Can't wait to read what everyone thinks!

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  36. This sounds like a lovely scent. I'm interested to know some of the other ways organic perfumes differ from the synthetics. If an extra sample happens to be lying around I would be interested in trying it.

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  37. GalileosDaughter25 mai 2010 à 22:00

    Missed it but it was a lot of fun reading the review! I love Giacobetti's work. Hopefully we can convince her with enough shameless begging (I have no pride, really) to release a parfum version of Sexy Angelic.

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  38. The thought of having a perfume that I cannot get enough of....please enter me in the draw, va-va- vamp!

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  39. Obviously Ican't answer everyone individually, but thanks again for your enthusiastic response!

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  40. Wow, am I too late? Darn, I love the line!
    CindyN

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  41. Alas, I have come on-line too late, I fear, but this tuberose scent sounds ravishing. I hope the extra samples appear! I would love to smell this and compare it to other tuberoses I know.
    Ariane

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  42. I guess I missed this opportunity:( a theater ticket received in the last min. stopped me from typing a comment exactly at 7pm, which I was preparing to do ever since reading about this generous offer. I'm probably part of an almost extinct group of humans who doesn't have internet on the mobile:D

    Anyways, congratulations to the winners! I enjoyed reading the review as always:)

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  43. Lovely review of what sounds like an exciting fragrance. I would love to receive a sample if the number can be extended.
    Thanks Denyse!

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  44. Totally missed the bell.

    But I sure do hope this works out for OGiacobetti and HdP; she is already on my "pay attention when they release something" list, and the idea of finding the right "register" for organics is intriguing.

    Not to mention the scent itself, without backstory.

    Please toss my name into the second bin of consideration, should the house be generous and provide extra samples. Otherwise, I'll just...oh, I dunno, hunt down one of the winners. And beg for a huff. ;)

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  45. After falling head over heels for Carnal Flower recently reading about another great tuberose fragrance makes my day. I'm very much looking forward to try this, and Nuit de Tubereuse also, during my upcoming trip to Paris this summer. Thank you so much for your ever enjoyable and educational reviews - I love your blog!

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  46. oh no, I'm too late, but thanks for the review!

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  47. Argh! Too late.

    Everything's coming up tuberose.

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  48. I really really want to try these new fragrances composed by Olivia Giacobetti for Honoré des Prés! Today I'm wearing her IUNX Splash Forte, which is so wonderfully bracing! XOXO :-)

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  49. I would love to be included!

    thank you.

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  50. Having read the review TWICE now, I actually can't picture how this will smell (from rum to vanilla to tuberose... that's just not something I can conjure). I can't wait!!

    Also, the coconut has me excited. I really love PdN's Juste un Reve (which is a unique take on coconut) so I hope that the Coco will be good to me, too!

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  51. I love Bontes Bloom! I would love to try Vamp a NY!!

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  52. Hi, I've been reading great press on these, that they are more long lasting than the predecessors in the line.

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  53. Love Olivia Giacobetti! Please include me in the draw :-) Thanks!!

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  54. Nothing against Dita, but this does sound like fun, and it's fun just to imagine anything causing such a stir in the epicenter of perfume. And if it's wonderful to wear in a heatwave, I do hope Honore des Pres will be convinced to make available a few more samples for those of us in soon to be sweltering US North Atlantic region. Many thanks for the beautiful review, Denyse! ~~nozknoz

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  55. perhaps i'm too late, but vamp à NY sounds absolutely wonderful! if there is still a chance, i'd love to be entered to receive a sample!
    thank you, denyse, for this generosity and for the constant amazinginess of your blog! :)

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  56. Ah well, I never did have a chance being at work and all... Sigh.

    On the bright side, you made me want to be that guy doing a double-take in Vamp's wake and possibly even having a sneak sniff of her hair.

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  57. Thanks for doing this! now waiting patiently for your review of Love Coco and Love Les Carottes =)

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  58. I know I missed it! I know! But I'll try anyway!

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  59. I am a big fan of O. Giacobetti and am looking forward to testing Vamp. I know I am late for the samples, but your review has made me want to try this ASAP. I hope it comes to Luckyscent soon.
    Thank you C.

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  60. Please count me in, if there is an "in"
    thanks
    Ross
    http://olfactoryrescueservice.wordpress.com/

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  61. Oh, I am late- I would love to be included if extras arrive. Giacobetti. En Passant is perfection. I am so intrigued by her fling with the carnal flower
    Therese

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  62. I'm late , but it sounds beautiful , can't wait to try it .

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  63. Ok, so lots of late-comers. I don't want to raise expectations: meanwhile I learned that stocks of Vamp are running a low because it sold so well, so fingers crossed, but let's not get our hopes too high!

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  64. P.S. I mean for a second round of samples: the first one is already made up.

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  65. given that "en passant" is so ephemeral on me (it's the only one of all the perfumes i have), i don't have much hope about this one if organic perfumes anyway don't last...it seems from reading here and there that Olivia Giacobetti's perfumes tend to generally wear out quickly. maybe this is the drawback of the qualities that make her perfumes so delicate and light

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  66. I know there are a few naturals that last forever- vetiver, labdanum, genuine white sandalwood, muhuhu, some others, but it seems (except for the S. albus) that they can so dominate a scent that they don't really "match" OG's ethereal style (muhuhu, for example, smells to me like a sweaty horse). It would really be interesting (hint, hint) if you could interview her on how she crafts her all-naturals, and deals with the longevity issues...!
    -Marla

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  67. Hm, if there are additional samples, I'd love to try them. Thanks for writing!

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  68. OK, you're right; I did go back and carefully read the blog entry. Twice. Beautifully written and now I'm really dying to try this one. I adore tuberose, in all its incarnations.

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  69. I am a big fan of Giacobetti, though, perhaps embarrassingly, I haven't tried any of the Honoré des Prés line yet. Your review makes this sound great. Can't wait to try it!

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  70. well I would love to try Vamp...I am big tuberuse lover, but the odds don't look good, even if you get a couple more sample...thanks anyway!!

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  71. I am late to the game, but me too, please!!!!!!!!!!!

    Sincerely,

    Carole

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  72. Oh, my. I am late to the party, too, but would SO love to try it. Could you toss me in the hat ... if there is still a hat?

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  73. I know i'm late also, but please, if you have any extra Vamp a NY samples, please allow me to try! It sounds like a dream fragrance to me, a NY vamp!;) thanks!

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  74. Hi! The 100 samples were given away three weeks ago to the first 100 people to comment. Sorry, no more left!

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