Sniffapaloozas’ Spring Fling
On a beautiful April weekend in New York City, the Sniffapalooza group of fragrance aficionados gathered for two days of sensory experiences that ranged from midtown Manhattan to SoHo and the West Village. Friends from around the country and abroad had a reunion, and first-timers were initiated into the fabulous fun of Sniffapaloozas’ Spring Fling.
Sniffapalooza’s Karen Dubin, Founder and Director and Executive Operations Manager Karen Adams led the fragrance trekkers around town as they sniffed, sampled and acquired shopping bags full of scents. There was also time for enjoying culinary treats at the various stops and at lunch.
The jam-packed itinerary began on Saturday, April 10 with breakfast at Bergdorf Goodman’s Café. Presentations on recent launches were made to the Sniffapalooza audience by vendors including Serge Lutens, Annick Goutal, DayNa Decker, By Kilian, CHANEL, Acqua di Parma, Alexa Rodulfo,
Jo Malone, Guerlain, Clive Christian, Van Cleef & Arpels, Tom Ford fragrances, Donna Karan fragrances, Maison Francis Kurkdjian, Balenciaga, Canturi, Hermès and Atelier Colognes.
Jerome Épinette, Senior Perfumer at Robertet spoke to the Sniffapalooza group about creating three of the fragrances in the Atelier Cologne line. Beauty Fashion asked Mr. Épinette why he believes it is important for a Perfumer to discuss his creations with the
“The Perfumer provides the emotion of a fragrance,” he noted. “Marketing is important, but it can’t translate what the Perfumer wanted to create. The Perfumer is the Artist. Only a Perfumer can speak well about the fragrances he has developed. I try to bring emotion and beauty [to my fragrances].”
After breakfast, the Sniffapalooza group mingled in the Fragrance Department tosample scents, look for special gift-with-purchases and submit a raffle for a beautiful gift basket of fragrances. Before departing, each Sniffapalooza received a Bergdorf Goodman gift bag.
The next stop was Manhattan’s Opia Restaurant on East 57th Street where Sniffapaloozas dined on salad and chicken paillard while listening to a bevy of speakers. The Fragrance Foundation’s Mary Ellen Lapsansky, Terry Molnar and Lyn Leigh spoke about their new “One Drop Changes Everything” campaign designed to invite consumers to come back to fragrance. The trio also previewed the upcoming FiFi® Awards on June 10 where winners of the best fragrances of 2009 will be announced.
|CHANEL’s Ruth Summers is ready to make her presentation to the Sniffapalooza group at the Bergdorf Goodman breakfast.||IRobertet’s Jerome Épinette with Atelier Colognes’ Sylvie Ganter holds one of the fragrances she presented at the Bergdorf Goodman breakfast.||Bergdorf Goodman’s Maddi Marlowe stands by the bountiful gift basket of fragrances to be raffled off to a lucky Sniffapalooza.|
|Ms. Marlowe is joined by Bergdorf Goodman’s Diana Yasnis,
Valerie Aprigliano and Clive Christian’s Vickie Potamitis.
|The Fragrance Foundation’s Mary Ellen Lapsansky and Terry Molnar highlight the organization’s upcoming events and programs.||YouTube.com’s Katie Puckrik tells tales of her fans’ feedback about fragrances.|
|Firmenich’s Julien Levy gives a PowerPoint presentation about osMoz.com.||The New York Times’ Chandler Burr shares how he believes fragrances should be critiqued.||Sniffapalooza’s Karen Dubin with Mr. Levy|
|Ms. Lapsansky, Mr. Levy and Ms. Molnar are joined by The Fragrance Foundation’s Lyn Leigh.||Jacomo Art Collection’s François Damide and his daughter Celine Damide hold the new Jacomo fragrance at Henri Bendel.||Sniffapalooza’s Karen Adams and her daughter Lindsey Adams check out Bond No. 9’s exotic fragrance displays.|
Katie Puckrik delighted her audience with tales about feedback from her YouTube.com followers. Describing herself as a “fragrance thrill-seeker,” Ms. Puckrik reviews fragrances for her audience, which spans all age groups. Her feedback is sometimes angry, especially from teenagers who defend their celebrity fragrance faves. “YouTube.com is instant market research,” she confides and promises “to keep an open mind through my nose.”
Firmenich’s Julien Levy, Director of osMoz.com and Chef de Projet of Les Coullisses des Parfums updated the luncheon group on the latest news of this extraordinary fragrance palette. Les Coullisses du Parfum olfactory training kits are now available not only online but also at Henri Bendel in New York City. Each kit contains 12 essences to smell, an olfactory exploration notebook and special training on the sense of smell.
The New York Times perfume critic Chandler Burr entertained his listeners with his usual acerbic style. Mr. Burr attacked the established notion that fragrance should be described as a structure of top, middle and bottom notes.
He believes fragrance should be regarded as a whole work as you would look at a work of art. “It’s an abstract expression.” He urged his audience “to look at perfume as you would look at a painting.”
Other speakers were Sephora’s Kerri Lapof, Jacomo Art Collection’s François Damide, Aromawear’s Cathy Gins, Karen Ballou for Pretty Woman by Barbara Orbison, Parfums des Beaux Arts’ Dawn Spencer Hurwitz, Perfume.com’s Teresa Findlay and, for chocaholics, 2 Chicks With Chocolate’s Elyissia Wassung.
The afternoon progressed with stops at Takashimaya and Henri Bendel where explorations of niche fragrances awaited. The final destination of the day was the Plaza Hotel where Ben Krigler, Creative Director of the Krigler parfumerie greeted the Sniffapalooza visitors and discussed his newest fragrance, Extraordinaire Camelia 209 and new Manhattan Rose 44 candle. After sipping wine and nibbling on canapés while sniffing Mr. Krigler’s scents, the group made a final stop at Plaza Beauty in the Grand Concourse of the Plaza Hotel where Pretty Woman by Barbara Orbison was displayed.
Day two in New York City kicked off for the Sniffapaloozas at Bond No. 9 where the brand’s latest fragrances, High Line and Montauk, were introduced to the group. Bond No. 9’s Master Blender James Slaba disclosed that the company is dedicated to guiding and helping people to discover their own sense of scent. While most customers select from the array of fragrances offered by Bond No. 9, Mr. Slaba will blend from two to five scents to create a customized juice. He works out the proportions of each ingredient to find the right balance.
Sniffapaloozas trekked to Le Labo, located on Elizabeth Street, a fragrance ‘laboratory’ where clients can seek out a unique juice. The most recent introduction from Le Labo is the scent Oud, the company’s first juice using the exotic oud ingredient.
It was on next to Lafco where Jon Bressler, one-half of the store’s creative team, greeted the Sniffapaloozas and showcased the retailer’s newest scents as well as provided samples of their fragrances. While a resource for many niche fragrance brands, Lafco carries the widest selection in the US of Santa Maria Novella scented products and fragrances.
Sniffapaloozas moved on to MiN New York Apothecary & Atelier on Crosby Street, which has reinterpreted a classic apothecary. It showcases exclusive and premium brands that normally don’t get that much visibility. According to the retailer’s owner, Chad Murawczyk, the products are curated for its globally-based clients. This specialty shop features men’s grooming lines, a range of niche fragrances for women and men as well as accessories, home furnishings and a selection of antiques and atomizers.
A lunch break followed at Barolo on West Broadway where a pasta lunch was savored as the group was treated to Sniffapalooza’s first Artisans
Showcase or EAU de Sniffapalooza (Emerging Artisans Uncorked). The speakers included Lord’s Jester’s Adam Gottschalk, Tallulah Jane Natural Perfumes’ Eleanor Jane, Duchess Marden’s Marla Steuer, Libby Patterson Organics’ Libby Patterson, Kristiansand New York’s Elisabeth Steen, Soulgasm’s Traci Paraday and 1000 Flowers’ Jessica Buchanan.
The post-lunch tour began in SoHo and ended up in the West Village. The Snffapaloozas arrived at the Anna Sui Boutique and perused the chic collection of fashions. It was also the opportunity to learn about the new Anna Sui Rock Me Summer Of Love! scent distributed by P&G Prestige Products.
The final fragrance destination of the day was Aedes De Venustas. For serious scent seekers, this mix of artisanal perfume lines is well curated and presented in a charming environment.The day ended on a purely hedonistic note with a visit to Pure Dark. A chocolate journey in this delicious emporium opens the sense of taste to the best of chocolate and teaches the beans-to-bar process. Rob Pinka,
Pure Dark’s Choclatier advises to tease the sense of smell by inhaling the fragrance of chocolate the way you smell wine.