Looking through my stash the other day I happened across a couple of Miller Harris frags- a bottle of Fleurs de Sel I had secreted and one of L’Air du Rien I bought at a ridiculous markdown at, I think, Loehmann’s (when that existed) Both are loved (I am wearing FdS again as I type) but one is apparently not coming back any time soon. Miller Harris apparently isn’t coming back soon to the States, and that’s a pity.
I first ran across them at Saks in Beverly Hills, which at the time had a small specialty and niche section in the back of the big art deco allée des fumes. They also showed up at ScentBar in LA, where Gaia, The Non-Blonde and I played with them and she, or was it I? Purchased Geranium Bourbon. I know I had it and loved it. I also had Tangerine Vert, which had been discovered via a sample sent along by Saks (see how that works, perfumers?) and was with me an immediate hit. TV was one of three samples sent by Saks in NYC since at the time FdS was an exclusive to the Fifth Avenue store- on a subsequent to NYC while out playing with Gaia (lordy how much do I miss my scent twin!) I can still see the look on her face when she tried it- that blank surprise of “why is this working for me, and so well when it’s supposed to be everything I hate in a bottle?” (she turned me on to Sous le Vent so I guess she won.)
Then L’Air de Rien came out.
L’Air de Rien was created for and with the input of Jane Birkin: actress, artist, muse, and person for whom the eponymous bag was named- and yes, the humor inherent in the fact that bags that cost more than most people’s cars were created for basically a rich hippie is in no way lost upon me. The scent itself is what a rich hippie’s bag might smell like- bits of fluff, old pot (or pot pourri) altoid tins, maps, books, cigarettes, lip balm, the works. Plus a fair bit of funk, like the bag itself had sweated. Some people I know recoiled from it. I loved it, and it’s the only one I can find that I did that’s still available.
I actually would be interested to read what happened to Miller Harris in the US- they went from the heights of exclusive to Saks to being on sale at Bloomingdales to the discount hell of TJ Maxx to gone in seemingly record time and I cannot for the life of me fathom why. They did scents that were at the very worst nice, if not challenging (for the most part) and more than a few that in my estimation were knock-it-out-of-the-park hits. I am glad to see that LdR is still out there being delightfully weird and available to ship but it’s sad that some of the others aren’t and kind of kills me that FdS is just, seemingly, gone. Want to start a petition to bring it back?
Do you have a favorite Miller Harris? Do you have the skinny on why they’re not in the US anymore? Please spill the tea in the comments.
Miller Harris is available at their website. L’Air de Rien is $158 for 11ML. My bottles were purchased from various retailers. Surrender to Chance has a good selection of them to sample. Photos are mine and from Pexels.