Showing posts with label Ines de la Fressange. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Ines de la Fressange. Show all posts

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Those Were The Days- Fashion, Models, Makeup Part I

Last weekend I spent more time than I'm willing to admit browsing the archives of Top Models Of The World. The site has photos from fashion shows, scans of fashion and beauty editorials from old magazines and vintage ads featuring famous and less famous models. Usually I look for older stuff, but I was sucked in by items from the 1908s and 90s, pictures I've seen on the pages of the actual magazines during the times they were the only connection lifeline to the fashion world. I picked some of these gems to share with you.

Ines de la Fressange in Chanel was elegance personified:

Even in this kind of an outfit:

The same goes for Iman in Dior:

Even Guerlain and Famke Janssen didn't escape the 80s:

Madame Sarkozy:

Nobody escaped the mullet:

Janice Dickinson in saner days; Cosmo in less smutty days:

Aziza taught us how do apply blush:

Pretty much my fashion ideal circa 1982:

Serge Lutens took his creative vision from Dior to Shiseido:

 The gentleman in the next two photos is Uncle Karl:

Jerry Hall and Joan Severance in French Vogue:

Kimora, before Baby Phat and reality TV:

Cindy was already regretting the pleated pants:

No idea what's going on there, but bunny!!!

Stay tuned for part 2 tomorrow!

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

The Lost Perfumes: Inès De La Fressange (2004)

Last summer I went searching for the two Inès De La Fressange fragrances. I was curious to smell scents that were created for one of the few celebrities who can and should be considered an icon and an inspiration. I wrote about the story behind these perfumes and reviewed the older one, which was all that I could find at the time. Since then I kept a watchful eye on eBay, until finally, a pristine boxed and sealed 1 0z bottle was mine for the taking.

The pretty box is adorned with the same gold leaves you see on the beautiful bottle, Inès' emblem. You spray by pressing the acorn that's on top. The whole thing is quite adorable, and so is the scent, in a generic, predictable fruit-floral-with-musk-in-the-base way. I'm not a big fan of Alberto Morillas creations, but one thing you can't take away from him: He knows how to do commercial fragrances. Which doesn't explain why this juice wasn't a success and was pulled from shelves within two years of its launch. Maybe it was lack of marketing, or maybe it was just too similar to dozens of other perfumes on the market.

While I'm not sure I could pick this scent in a blind test of other fruity-florals of it kind, it's not as bad a juice as one would imagine. Maybe that's another reason it was discontinued: there's no reek of vile cheap materials, and, dare I say it? It actually smells nice, even if only as a fruity musk little thing.

The official notes are:
top: mandarin, blackcurrant, bergamot, neroli
heart: lily, white rose, orris, peony
base: patchouli, white musk, benzoin, vetiver

Any orris and vetiver that might be in there are hiding their face in shame for sharing bottle space with all that fruit (there's no mistaking the abundance of mandarin and berries), and even the flowers are staying well in the shadow, but the drydown is quite fun. It's mostly musk and benzoin with a faint hint of patchouli. The result is pretty and wearable, and while it doesn't rock my world in any way, I don't hate it. The "yesterday's perfume" residue it leaves on my clothes is borderline gorgeous. That alone was worth the hassle of trying to find this perfume.

Monday, August 06, 2007

Ines de la Fressange- Ines de la Fressange (1999)

Once upon a time when Karl Lagerfeld looked a little less scary and made more inspired clothes, he had a muse. Her name was Inès De La Fressange (actually, her full name was Inès Marie Laetitia Eglantine Isabelle de Seignard de la Fressange. Try saying that three times. Fast. And now with a French accent). She was an heiress, the daughter of a marquis, and a supermodel who was the embodiment of Chanel style during the 80s.

She was also chosen to be Marianne, the female icon of the French republic whose face appears on stamps and town hall buildings across the nation (think Queen Elizabeth, only with more sex appeal and no cranky Philip at her side). This unique career move was, supposedly, the cause of her falling out with Mr. Lagerfeld, according to whom Marianne represented ''everything that is boring, bourgeois and provincial,'' and that he was not going to dress a historic monument.

Inès quit modeling during the 90s and became a successful fashion and accessories designer. Issuing her own fragrance was a logical move (after all we have scents by Cindy Crawford, Naomi Capmbell, and soon Kate Moss). She partnered with French cosmetics company Payot and launched Inès de la Fressange in 1999. This is the perfume in the squat bottle and the official notes are:
  • top: bergamot, aldehydes, peach, rosewood
  • heart: ylang-ylang, lily, carnation, rose
  • base: sandalwood, tonka bean, civet, benzoin
Apparently, the fragrance didn't live up to the expectations, and in 2004 Inès has commissioned another scent to bear her name. This time, the creator was Alberto Morillas, the nose behind many mainstream scents, from Calvin Klein to Carolina Herrera, some more questionable than others.The notes of the new fragrance were decidedly fruity-floral, but the dry-down might have offered a little edge:
  • top: mandarin, blackcurrant, bergamot, neroli
  • heart: lily, white rose, orris, peony
  • base: patchouli, white musk, benzoin, vetiver

The new bottle had a beautiful gold leaf pattern which also appeared in Inès' other designs, from home accessories to jewelry. It made a brief appearance here in the US, but was gone within a year. It vanished so completely, that while you can still find bottles of the 1999 scent for a good price (though some of the online stores are already out of stock and the price have gone up since I got my bottle), the 2004 version is nowhere to be found, and I've been haunting eBay and every online store known to mankind religiously.

That leaves us with my little 1999 bottle. This is what my nose declares as very French. It doesn't strike me as very aldehydic as much as floral in a classy and classic way. It's subtle and despite my big nemesis peach (and its second-in-command, lily of the valley), I don't smell anything cloying or heady. The sillage is minimal and inoffensive, the more interesting flowers, ylang and carnation, are enveloping the skin. It's not a bouquet, but more of a delicate flower tucked behind the ear.

Sometime before the drydown, the notes meld into a beautiful moment, the kind of nose-firmly-stuck-to-wrist experience. It might be the carnation, a note I've learned to adore, or the whole subtle composition. The drydown continues along the same lines. If there's civet in there, the animal is tame. The benzoin sweetness is minimal, the sandalwood and tonka bean streamlined but warm. It's elegant, close to the skin and very serene.

However, I can't help wishing it was bigger and bolder. I don't have a French bone in my body and I'm not sure I can really work this kind of subtle chic. I want something more along the lines of Inès the 80s supermodel: striking features and a personality strong enough to tell Karl Lagerfeld where to stick it.

February 2008 edit: I found a bottle of the 2004 juice. My review is here.