Quick show of hands – how many of you have never smelled the Bulgari Omnia fragrances because you can´t figure out how to spray the damn bottle? How many of you have skipped them because you think they´re too ugly to touch? Finally, how many of you think they´re a really cool design and I can take my Betsey-Johnson-bottle-loving butt and go stand in a corner, since I clearly have no design sense, or taste for that matter?
Morillas did the next one, Omnia Crystalline, in 2005, and as you´d expect from the name it´s the lightweight, frosted summer flanker, with notes of bamboo, Asian pear, lotus blossom, and woody notes. Some people can´t smell it at all, and some people who can smell it think it´s awfully dull, but I really enjoy it. It´s something like Bulgari´s Green Tea layered with a light musky citrus. I can´t make any argument at all for dazzling brilliance on its part, but it’s lighthearted and fizzy and fun, and there are days in summer when nothing else will do.
Omnia Amethyste came in 2006, and it´s not clear to me whether Morillas was on the job for that one. I was excited by the purple bottle and the notes, which include pink grapefruit, iris, rose, heliotrope and woody notes. I was most excited because the iris in the fragrance was supposed to capture the smell of the iris flower rather than the roots, i.e., orris, which is generally what’s in there when a fragrance lists iris, and which is in fact quite a different smell.
I adore the smell of iris blossoms. I assume most non-gardeners don’t even realize iris have scent, but many of them do, and they are grown and prized for their perfume, which is as delightful and as varied as the smell of roses. An olfactory highlight of my life was standing in the middle of acres of blooming iris in the high desert of New Mexico one August, surrounded by that intoxicating smell. Instead, I found Amethyste a powdery heliotrope mess, and while I suppose it wasn´t execrable, the less said the better.
The newest Omnia, Green Jade, has just arrived in stores here, and Morillas is listed as the perfumer. Apparently aimed at “younger women,” which in perfume-speak must, at this point, mean women aged 12 – 18, Green Jade has notes of green mandarin, spring water (!), white peony, pear blossom, jasmine, pistachio, soft woods and musk. If you care, the green on the bottle is somewhat brighter than in this image; I think it’s quite pretty.
How do you feel about those bottles, anyway? Are there any bottles out there you loathe so much they’ve impeded you from buying the fragrance?
all images: Sephora