I have been a fan of
the Arquiste line since its stylish inception in 2011. The striking visuals,
sensual storytelling and olfactory time travelling marked the house out as one
to keep a close eye on. The brand’s artistic director Carlos Huber is the indefatigably
upbeat, pitch-perfect and handsome embodiment of the brand. He is charming and
relentlessly persuasive in his pursuit of Arquiste domination.
Carlos Huber, Creative Director, Arqusite.
His Instagram is
a warm and charming mix of work and personal journeys, destinations,
architecture, family, brand love, sun, fragrance development, toned torsos, swimshorts…
(ha) and a subtle collage of all the things that coalesce into the Arquiste creative
mindset. There is gloss and vivacity, laughter, smiles and dapper placement of
Carlos & Co amid locations like London, Mexico City, New York, Madrid,
Sydney and Brussels. Partly work and some play, the seemingly casual imagery is
in part just that but also a subliminal reinforcement of a meticulous Brand
Rodrigo Flores-Roux (L) & Yann Vasnier (R)
The noses working
with Carlos are the multi talented Yann Vasnier and Rodrigo Flores-Roux, both
perfumers of great dexterity and luminosity. Together, this trio of men have
assembled a body of work that has grown in artistic stature and slowly gathered
acclaim across the perfume world from critics and perfume lovers alike.
“The long black nights, when
the moon hides her face, when the stars are afraid, are not so black. The
silence that dwells in the forest is not so black. There is nothing in the
world so black as thy hair.”
Oscar Wilde ‘Salome’
A year ago, Liz Moores launched Papillon Perfumery with three
extraordinary fragrances, Anubis,
Angelique and my beloved sluttish Tobacco
Rose. Blended with masterly and sensual precision it was almost impossible
to imagine how she had pulled off such a feat of smooth and decadent
engineering. Then I had the pleasure of getting to know her through social
media, messages, e-mails and electronic chatting. Liz is a very canny user of
social media, she is genuinely delicious and honest, fun and deadly serious
about what she does. She is her brand, Papillon is Liz, the two are savagely,
sexily and magnificently inseparable.
Liz Moores, perfumer.
Liz’s approach to her scented work is deeply committed and
tempestuous. I love the meld of earned graft, home-school aromachemistry and
drama she brings to the mixing table. She is a perfectionist with a lovely
ability to still acknowledge the eroticism of flaws, she uses the multifarious
facets of her charming and layered personality to bear dramatically on the
materials and techniques she requires to render her ideas redolent with
biography and brio.
She worked insanely hard to get to the point last year when she
was ready to launch Anubis, Angelique and
Tobacco Rose. Along the way there has
been much stress and heartache, temper tantrums, hurling of formulae, diva
hissy fits, packaging issues, endless modifications, tears, lot of smoking and
vino (hahahaha…) but also much love and support from her ridiculously gorgeous
family, daughters Poppy, Lily and Jasmine, son Rowan, cute as a button baby
Daisy and dashing hubby Simon. This tight skein of love and coalition from her
floral-monikered kids, spouse and the astonishing menagerie of animals that
surrounds her in the new forest where she is carefully secluded away has
allowed Liz to fulfil many roles all which had fed into her fiercely beautiful
work. Mother, artist, perfumer, sensualist, free spirit, friend, bitch, queen,
voodoo temptress, lover and glorious generous woman.
Liz & Phanta the ghostly python
The wrapped surround of trees, her semi-wild garden, horses,
cats, pythons (including a singular marble toned albino one called Phanta) and
owls seems to lend Liz a curious sense of chthonic, oracular, priestess. Ok,
one that swears like a docker maybe, but she is profoundly grounded in her
details and preoccupations. As I’ve gotten to know her better and we have
chatted about different things; her powerful kindnesses and unerring sense of
reality and belief in kinship have made me value her friendship like the rarest
orchid in the last glasshouse at the edge of the world.