Build and Destroy

The Contrary Nature of a New Scent, Build and Destroy

James Lavelle, London musician and co-founder of the record labels Mo’ Wax and UNKLE, has his hands full with another unexpected venture, this time in the olfactory zone. He's collaborated with the award-winning perfumer Azzi Glasser (Kylie Minogue, Bella Freud, Agent Provocateur, Johnny Depp) to create Build and Destroy. The musky eau de parfum — derived from frankincense and pimento — and cigarette-style box take after Lavelle's own vices and idiosyncrasies, a conceptual and contrary blend of post-punk electronica and street art, among other elements of self-defeatist youth culture.

300 limited-edition bottles, available at Saatchi Gallery, London (as part of a new Mo' Wax exhibit), and online at Goodhood Store (starting November 27) 

Nov 17, 2014 15:18:00
Moschino Toy eau de toilette

Jeremy Scott Can't Stop, Won't Stop Toying Around at Moschino

You knew Jeremy Scott would create something impossibly ghoulish or impossibly adorable for his first Moschino fragrance. Which way did he go? Impossibly adorable, creating a smiling teddy bear as the bottle for the eau de toilette, which is called, simply, Toy. However, the bear's shirt makes clear, with Dada-like deadpan, that he is not just a toy.

The furry flacon is an homage to the teddy-bear dress that the house's founder, Franco Moschino, designed in the eighties, and Scott’s own infatuation with the stuffed animal. It also recalls the child-like costumes of Scott's friend Miley Cyrus. The designer says the scent is a mix of woody and techno — just the thing to go with your gold-chained Happy Meal bag.

The ad campaign was shot by Steven Meisel and shows Brazilian bombshell Isabeli Fontana goofing around in a teddy-bear dress that Scott designed as an homage to the one Moschino designed in 1988.

Moschino Toy, $110 at Moschino stores, Harrods in London, and online

Nov 14, 2014 23:23:00
Joya Foxglove

A New Concept Scent that Actually Smells Great

Named after an odorless — and some think poisonous — flower once common across New York City (and still blooms at Central Park’s Conservancy Garden) comes a new scent from Joya, the unorthodox Brooklyn perfumery. Or 'fragrance design studio,' as they prefer to be called.

The fragrance, Foxglove, is Joya's fourth and most daring to date, a reimagining of and homage to old New York. Specifically, the perfume oil takes its cues from the Romantic Movement of the early 19th century, a time that saw the creation of America’s grandest parks as sanctuary from the Industrial Revolution and its noxious, mass-produced ways. “We sourced beautiful and extremely rare naturals and specialty raw materials," says Joya's founder Frederick Bouchardy, "to give the fragrance a real sensation of bursting stems, stamens, and leaves.” The notes in the resulting juice are a mix of salt meadow grass, hyacinth leaves, oak, cedar, and camellia.

Foxglove is sold exclusively on Net-a-Porter, a contrary situation that presents the sort of conceptual dilemma Joya seems to revels in — a fragrance based on a non-odor and sold without possibility of testing. The artful packaging, however, should help ease with the leap of faith. The full-sized version comes in a forest-green porcelain pot, custom-stained and slip-cast at the Joya studio, with an applicator wand that's been dipped in 22-karat gold. The travel size is also nicely considered with its acid-etched green glass, while the bar soap is saponified and drill-pressed by hand.

$112 (full size, 75 ml), $28 (travel size, 10 ml), $14 (bar soap) at Net-a-Porter

Nov 13, 2014 15:31:00
Lea T. for Redken

Lea T. Scores a Major Beauty Campaign

Lea T. — the transgender Brazilian model and muse of Givenchy's Riccardo Tisci who shot to notoriety several years ago when she posed nude for French Vogue while still, anatomically, a he — is back in the headlines. After subsequently appearing in various glossies, including Interview and Love, Lea has scored a lucrative beauty campaign. She's signed with Redken, the massive global haircare brand, to promote its Chromatics hair-color line, with print and digital campaigns set for January 2015.

The campaign will, naturally, celebrate individuality. "We're all people with our own personality, our own beauty, our own life," said Lea T. in a press statement. "I love working with Redken because they appreciate all kinds of beauty. They believe in the individuality of the person, and I think that's really important." While much of the coverage of and attention to Lea T.'s ascent as a model has focused on her gender and exploited her transition, this campaign promises to go beyond the obvious and highlight an inner beauty. Plus, come to think of it, she's always had great hair. 

Nov 05, 2014 19:22:00

When Hairy Met Scruffy

So much for peak beard. Over the weekend, men decked out in various tonsorial designs — "from delicate Dali moustaches to medal-worthy mutton chops," states the website — flocked to Portland, Oregon, for the World Beard and Moustache Championships. Here are the best manscaped moments, as captured by photographer Greg Anderson...

Nov 03, 2014 23:08:00
Tilda Swinton for Nars

Let Icons Be Icons: Tilda Swinton for Nars

Oscar-winning, critically-acclaimed, publicly-adored Tilda Swinton will be the face of Nars’ spring beauty campaign. Francois Nars, who previously tapped the screen legend Charlotte Rampling, opted for the Scottish actress and muse for her idiosyncratic, transformative portrayals in films such as I Am Love, We Need to Talk About Kevin, Orlando, and two Wes Anderson projects.

Nars shoots his own campaigns and has shot four portraits of Swinton. Each is based on one of four cosmetic ranges, beginning with the limited-edition eye-color collection Eye-Opening Act — aptly named, we might add.

$28 - $48 at Nars boutiques in January

Oct 17, 2014 13:44:00
Original ad campaign for Helmut Lang fragrances

Helmut Lang's Signature Scents Are Back

If Helmut Lang isn't ever returning to his label, at least his three signature scents are making a comeback. His women's and men's fragrances were launched in 2000 and 2001, respectively, while his second men's cologne, Cuiron, was added in 2002. All three were discontinued in 2005 when the designer, after selling all his shares to Prada, left the building.

Now, almost ten years later, after Prada sold to Link Theory, the company thinks it's a good time to reintroduce the trio. Considering there's a huge cult following for the originals, why not? While purists will no doubt know the difference, the scents have now been reissued in all their musky glory that calls to mind both clean laundry and morning-after bedsheets.

$185 (Eau de Parfum, Eau de Cologne), $165 (Cuiron) for 100 ml at Helmut Lang stores and online

Oct 08, 2014 18:57:00
Diana Vreeland Parfums

Finally, Diana Vreeland Parfums

Diana Vreeland was a woman of grandiose, sometimes outrageous proclamations: “Unshined shoes are the end of civilization,” “The West is boring itself to death! And talking itself to death!" and our favorite, "All my life I’ve pursued the perfect red. I can never get painters to mix it for me." In her own brash and totally subjective way, she changed — and in some cases invented — the rules of fashion. This ability was the motivating force in her more than 35 years in service to fashion and style, first as fashion editor of Harper’s Bazaar, then as editor-in-chief of Vogue, then as head of the Costume Institute at the Metropolitan Museum.

It's in this colorful context that Diana Vreeland Parfums was born. Envisioned by her grandson, Alexander Vreeland, the five scents in the new series take after some of Vreeland's more theatrical superlatives: Absolutely Vital (note of sandalwood and rose), Extravagance Russe (amber), Perfectly Marvelous (jasmine, cashmeran), Outrageously Vibrant (cassis, patchouli, rose), and Simply Divine (tuberose).

Of course the bottle, too, would have to reflect Vreeland's affection for tall tales. With this in mind, Fabien Baron created a glass bottle in exaggerated proportions, though in keeping with the elegance of perfume flacons typical of the 1920s. The warm hues recall Vreeland's famed red boudoir.

Diana Vreeland Parfums will launch during Milan Fashion Week, September 4, 6-9 pm, 10 Corso Como, where Alexander Vreeland will be on hand

Aug 21, 2014 15:17:00
ODIN White Line

ODIN Deconstructs the Floral Scent for Its New White Line

ODIN — the New York men's store and fashion label with three downtown outlets — is cult-known for its Black Line, a unisex collection of ten brooding eau de parfums. The brand is now exploring its feminine side with White Line, three eau de parfums — Milieu Rosa, Efflora, Vert Reseda — that deconstruct notions of a floral scent, incorporating every part of the flower: stem, leaves, and blossom.

The packaging is a graphic relief by paper engineer Matthew Shlian, whose method of layering and laser-cutting cardstock creates three-dimensional artworks relating to each scent's complex minimalism.

At ODIN and Barneys New York in November 2014

Aug 21, 2014 14:08:00

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