"24 Hours a Day of a Perfumed Life"
By Jessica M
Even if the name “Francis Kurkdjian” doesn’t sound instantly familiar to you, you’ve probably worn one of his fragrance creations at some point: Narciso Rodriguez for Her, maybe, or Elizabeth Arden Green Tea, Armani Mania, Guerlain Rose Barbare, the first two perfumes from Juliette Has a Gun… the list goes on. Kurkdjian won the Francois Coty Perfume Award in 2001 (at the age of thirty!), for his accomplished body of work. Since then, he has also taken fragrance beyond its usual boundaries by collaborating on multi-media “olfactory installations.” He has even scented the historic fountains and gardens of Versailles and has recreated Marie Antoinette’s favorite perfume.
Kurkdjian recently introduced the first fragranced products bearing his own name: his Paris boutique opened on September 9, 2009 (he considers the 9/9/9 date very lucky), and his line became available at Bergdorf Goodman just a few days ago. The perfumer made an appearance at Bergdorf to discuss the products and his desire to scent every aspect and every moment of our lives.
Maison Francis Kurkdjian, as his company is formally known, offers some traditional fragrance formats. The line includes seven fragrances packaged in heavy glass bottles with zinc caps. Aqua Universalis, Cologne pour le Matin, and Cologne Pour le Soir are unisex eau de toilettes. Lumière Noire, a spicy rose-patchouli mix, and APOM (A Piece of Me), a blend of orange blossom and cedar wood, are both available in masculine and feminine formulas. (My favorite was APOM pour Femme, which seems like a richer, more complex cousin to Acqua di Parma’s Iris Nobile, another one of Kurkdjian’s earlier compositions.)
But Kurkdjian didn’t stop there: he also came up with candles, perfumed incense papers, fragranced laundry detergents, room spray, and—most intriguing of all—a bracelet made of a richly perfumed leather strip with a sterling silver clasp. He even developed a series of liquid bubbles that you can blow with a little plastic wand, just like the ones you had as a child, except that the bubbles from Maison Francis Kurkdjian are scented like freshly cut grass, mint leaves, and pears.
It would be wonderful to scent “every waking hour,” as Kurkdjian says, with these products from Paris. I’d probably start with the incense papers and a small bottle of APOM. And, just to show the setting where the perfumer demonstrated his line, here’s a view from the seventh floor of Bergdorf Goodman, at the heart of another “city that never sleeps.”
For more information, see the Francis Kurkdjian website (http://www.franciskurkdjian.com) or call Bergdorf Goodman at (212) 872-2581.
Maison Francis Kurkdjian is also available at Neiman Marcus, and will be coming to Aedes de Venustas in New York later this year.
Photo Credit: Jessica M