I was in Chicago for a nanosecond for meetings and some fun. And that always includes perfume. But it’s been kinda boring lately, with all the flankers and foobers and flubbers clanking their way across the counters, shrieking and clawing for attention, all smelling much the same (but it’s NEW!). The really good SAs, like Mohammed at Nordstrom (shameless plug, there – he really IS phenomenal) wince every time I stalk into the perfume section “oh, dear. Here she comes – again. And I got nuthin’……until last Friday.
Mohammed met me at the counter with this wicked glint in his eye and an oval bottle with a vaguely familiar cap: “would you like to try something………NEW??? my dear?” He was nearly giggling with anticipation at the look of horror on my face. (I’m such a snob).
I prepared to recoil (did I mention I’m a snob?)…..then he said the magic name: Mathilde Laurent. I am such a Laurent fangirl that I would try eau de toilette – from the toilet – if she was behind it. So yah, sure! Hand it ovah!
Oh, Mathilde. I do love you so. I love you even more than I did when you blew my mind with the uber-urban gin and tonic at 5:45p (Brillante)…when you brought the Saudi prince who magically bestowed upon me my Percheron 6-hitch (Fougeuse) and mornings on the terrace, watching the gardeners weed the flower beds (Diaphane)..
But I now love you more than rubies. You have brought me a lily. A lily I can wear. Bless you, darling. Baiser Vole ( Stolen Kiss) starts as a breath of soapy green, with an undercurrent of the fleshy sweetness of a Madonna Lily (lilium candidum) Not as sneezey-sweet as a Stargazer, Madonnas always smell to me like cooling cooked sweet milk . The soapy opening gives way to the bitter green of the stems and leaves (I think Mathilde threw the whole lily in there, from the bulb to the pistils) …then the soapy/fleshy tone comes back…then the dirt, then the cooling sweet milk…then back to the soapy green. This is like a Philip Glass tune, with the same 5 notes played over and over – but in varying pitches and tones – like pale faceted aquamarine. Not quite precious, but interesting and really pretty! I’m not getting a lot of powder, instead what I get is powdered ….leaf? Maybe. Just a tad ‘different’ from your average soapy floral. Unlike Les Heures, Baiser Vole seems designed for the larger mainstream market – it doesn’t have a challenging bone in its body but it’s nuanced enough to make it interesting beyond the first spritz. In less adept hands this would’ve been a total snooze but La Belle Laurent keeps it on the knife-edge between ‘interesting’ and accessible. I wore this all day yesterday and was amazed at how it kept my interest and how many people thought I smelled…pretty. Sometimes that’s all a gal needs.
My sample came from Nordstrom Chicago which was awaiting delivery and it’s supposedly exclusive to them (in the US) for a year – according to Mohammed Baiser Vole will be available in 1.6 oz/$100 and 3.3 oz/ $145 .
Notes are: Lily flowers/lily stems/lily bulbs/lily. I’m sure there’s other stuff in there but they didn’t have actual notes yet – so I’m giving you my version.
image: A Stolen Kiss