Josephine Baker, Arpege, and a Decorating Fantasy

In an age when the phrase “style icon” is used to describe virtually any actress or model who hires a professional stylist and receives loans of designer gowns for red-carpet events, it can be hard to remember that there was a time when true, one-of-a-kind stars like Josephine Baker captured the public imagination.

But, to the point: Am I the last person to learn that Josephine Baker’s favorite perfume was Lanvin’s Arpège?

lanvin bottle

I don’t remember what exactly I was searching for, but I came across this interesting piece of fragrance trivia…and something even better.

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Free Association: By Kilian In the Garden of Good and Evil

Luxury niche fragrance house By Kilian has just announced its forthcoming collection, In the Garden of Good and Evil. This collection is inspired by the Biblical story of original sin in the Garden of Eden, and each of its three perfumes is presented in a white lacquer box adorned with a golden serpent.

In a publicity photograph for the new line, Kilian Hennessy poses with a scaly companion. I suppose we’re meant to read this image as a sexy, subversive allusion to the Old Testament.

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The Art of Perfume Ads: Lady Gaga Fame

Fame, the first fragrance to bear Lady Gaga’s name, will be released in September. First disclaimer: I haven’t tried it yet, so this isn’t a review. Instead, I’m taking a lighthearted look at the advertising image that was released in July. Second disclaimer: although I’m a general admirer of Lady Gaga’s music and self-presentation, I’m not an expert on her every word and deed. This is just my own, Rorschach–blot-like impression of the ad. And one quick warning: this post will include further nudity, albeit of an artistic nature. (NSFW!)

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