Yesterday evening was amazing! I had the good fortune to smell and hear all about L’Artisan Parfumeur in their London boutique at Covent Garden. This deserves its own post, so please check back to see lots of photos and my experiences there. Also I have very (very, very) interesting news about the line – more next week!
After that lovely meeting we went to dinner at an amazing chinese restaurant called Hakkasan. It is an incredible success, booked solid three sessions a night for the last ten years, a good thing we have such lovely friends in London to make it happen! Thanks for everything E. and F.! 😉
Today I made my last perfume trip around the city. First stop was Liberty, a department store in an amazingly beautiful venue that houses many interesting brands. I smelled a little into the Byredo line (not interested right now, sorry Byredo), tested most Le Labo’s (I liked Poivre, the London exclusive, and Labdanum, a cousin of Shalimar). I also tried Odin 01-04 and a few Comme des Garcons. I saw a little contingent of the CB-I hate perfume line for the first time, 1966-The Beach is a lovely summer scent, but I concluded that the old half-empty bottle of Bobbi Brown Beach would do just fine for this particular kind of craving.
After lunch at the stylish Sketch (try googling “Sketch Loos”, quite worth a look!) the last stop was Fortnum&Mason on Picadilly.
Thanks to Tara for this tip, they had really interesting lines available.
There is a fully equipped Caron counter, urns and all (finally got the chance to smell Farnesiana that Marina of PST loves so much), they carry Amouage, Micallef, Clive Christian, Maison Dorin, Xerjoff, Prada Exclusives among the usual suspects like Serge Lutens or Penhaligons. I tried Amaranthine, a Duchaufour creation, it shares some traits with Frapin 1697, I think. Closer investigation seems indicated!
Tonight is our last evening in London, we will go to a traditional pub, The Clarence.
The reason I had so much time to wander the city and investigate its every perfumed nook and cranny, was that my plans have been changed, but not by me.
I was enrolled at the London Institute of Fashion for the course most of you will probably know about – Understanding Fragrance, held by Denyse Beaulieu of Grain de Musc. Sadly, due to unforseen and certainly unfortunate circumstances the course got cancelled at the last minute, actually only the first day at first, then the second too, before they finally cancelled alltogether. I had been looking forward to this very much of course, so I was disappointed as well as furious at first at the unprofessionalism of it all. I had flown here especially after all and organized child care for my boys, my husband had closed his practice, all for this course.
I was in touch with Denyse through email since and she explained the whole, slightly surreal ordeal she went through. She was not allowed to enter the UK due to some absurd new regulations, it was not her fault. But I do blame the institution for not being sufficiently prepared for the situation.
The upside is I had more time to explore London, but the sad thing is that is quite likely impossible for me to attend the course at a later date this year, there is just too much else involved for me to just up and go when I would like.
Thank you all for coming with me on this trip, your comments were so lovely, I felt you were with me on my scented adventures. 🙂