Scents of Style

Choosing a perfume merely for its scent is passé. What if we were to choose our fragrances for the look of the bottle, for how it sits on our vanity, for how it matches the clothes of the season? Here, we pair uniquely stunning vessels with a directional look from the same designers’ fall/winter 2012 ready-to-wear collections.


Untitled by Maison Martin Margiela

A minimalist perfume if there ever was one, Untitled by Maison Martin Margiela is a quiet, clean, green-musky scent with notes of boxwood and bitter orange. Coming from the conceptual designer, it’s surprisingly wearable and subdued. The container, designed in collaboration with French Art Director Fabien Baron and inspired by 19th century glass-stoppered perfume bottles, skews hyper-modern with the addition of a swath of chalk white “paint” and generic typewriter font. White string wrapped around the neck of the flacon evokes the brand’s hand-sewn labels. The Maison Martin Margiela A/W 2012 parallel to this packaging? A voluminous and crisp white cotton menswear-inspired shirt paired with an asymmetrical black leather skirt with white piping. Deconstructed, but eminently wearable, just like Untitled.


Dot by Marc Jacobs

The packaging for Dot by Marc Jacobs is a throwback to a time when Jacobs’ work was more playful – all rounded details and punchy prints including the polka dots this perfume is named after. The rotund bottle, evocative of a feminine ladybug in mid-flight, is red and black Murano-like glass with off-kilter, rounded, wing-like appendages reminiscent of the design of the brand’s Daisy bottle. The fragrance inside this container, developed by perfumer Annie Buzantian, is appropriately sweet and young, and incorporates notes of dragon fruit, honeysuckle and coconut water. The perfect match from Marc Jacobs’ Fall 2012 ready-to-wear show: a red high-waisted bell-shaped skirt that taps into this season’s brocade trend, topping black cropped trousers, the look is paired with a black capelet and a jaunty wide-brimmed hat. grounded by the same eyebrow-raising crystal-buckle pilgrim shoes the designer wore to fashion parties everywhere this spring.


Privé Figuier Eden by Giorgio Armani

Figuier Eden by Armani Privé is the distillation of timeless Italian chic in a bottle. This new fragrance is inspired by the olive and fig trees prevalent in the archetypal Mediterranean garden. The composition is rounded out with notes of red pepper, bergamot, citrus, and amber. This is a unisex scent, and the perfume bottle caters to that concept: There is the masculine, squared off, classic, clear-glass bottle with a subtly luxurious, square gold-tone label. And then there’s the precariously balanced rounded stopper resembleing a volcanic pebble smoothed by the surf, such as might be found on an Italian beach. The overwhelming majority of Armani’s fall collection seems like an homage to this dichotomy: masculine tailoring and hard lines on the bottom, paired with feminine transparency and luminous embroidery on top, each look finished off with a rakishly tilted black fedora.

Coco Noir by ChanelDark and exclusive is what Chanel’s Coco Noir is all about. This riff on the ever-popular classic Coco, concocted by perfumer Jacques Polge, explores the darker end of the olfactory spectrum, with notes of bergamot, Indonesian patchouli, Brazilian tonka bean, and frankincense coming out to play with the rose and geranium notes that define its predecessor. The bottle echoes the darker mood with its modern cut crystal in an inky black that underlines its sharply beveled shoulders and emerald-cut cap. The sartorial equivalent of this striking vessel: the first few looks from the Chanel fall/winter runway, which hailed a return to the drama of the deepest black and razor-sharp tailoring. Atypical “three-piece suits” composed of jackets and skirts over cuffed trousers, hailing the return of the “dress over pants” trend, were shown alongside futuristic all-black ensembles with geometric cutouts.
Infusion d’Iris Absolue by PradaPrada Infusion d’Iris Absolue’s namesake note is a noble ingredient as precious as gold. Perfumer Daniela Andrier deepened the iris notes present in the scent’s lighter predecessor, Infusion d’Iris, and made this version altogether more elegant and grown-up. The classic packaging reflects this: a clear rectangular glass bottle is colored by the luminous aureate liquid within, and the label is Prada’s iconic rope-trimmed oval, executed in the same shade for a tone-on-tone effect. The bottle’s cap is a restrained stamped gold cylinder. This vessel has an air of permanence that goes beyond trends. Similarly, the looks on Miuccia Prada’s upcoming fall collection hail back to the brand’s unique stylistic beginnings: sharp, even tailoring, belted coats, and busy geometric prints. One ensemble in particular features a coat-and-trouser suit in a gold tone and a print reminiscent of the perfume bottle’s cap. The coat is cinched with a glossy brown leather belt with a glowing rectangular gold-tone buckle.

Text by Karena Akhavein