Straight from the kitchen.

A Serge Lutens fragrance is always anticipated. “Nuit de cellophane” has been around for over 2 years, but I’ve not yet caught a whiff of it. I do know what it’s supposed to smell like: Chinese Osmanthus, white flowers and mandarin. While the descriptiveness alone did not stir my curiosity, the name did. Having just returned from Shanghai, I’m thinking I should have had a bottle there with me.

A great name leads you, entices you, draws you in, calls on you to do more (not in a chore kind of way…because you want to know what it can do for you and what you can be with it). It says, “follow me,” creating a wake of buzz and loyalty. Aahh, a great name has perfume-like qualities. It commands your attention, earning its way into your life, such that you want to spend more time with it (minis stashed in your glove compartment or purse). The unexpected catches. The expected caches.

The same is true with a name: “cellophane” invites you in, and “Nuit” tells you it’s o.k. to step over the threshold. You might not be able to put a finger on why you want to know more. Who cares. You are adventurous. Granted, if this were Lutens’ first out of the lab, the name would probably have killed it, but given what the brand has become, “cellophane” is anything but flat or transparent. (It does sound more mysteriously sophisticated in French than English.) In fact, a quick search tells me it means “cracklin.” You know, I was on to that. Crisp, sparks, dazzling, excitement. Oh, what a nuit!

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