When it comes to July, apart from celebrating the summer time and Wimbledon, one of the highlight is to celebrate a birthday, I mean, my own birthday. Since I am not able to travel anywhere this year, that doesn’t mean that I shouldn’t be celebrating, life is about living, so no matter what happens, life still needs to go on. As a guy like me who loves something stylish and sophisticated, menswear of course is part of the package, but apart from that, why not make my special day smell nicer with an impeccable outfit? When it comes to fragrance, for this time, I would like to have something that brings me back to my recent visit in Berlin, or more precisely, my yearning of Berliner filmography, fatal glamour of Marlene Dietrich.
Speaking of this glamorous actress and fragrance, there’s one thing that can link them together, which is, the understated yet historic perfume house Harry Lehmann Parfum. I have done some ‘homework’ (aka research) before I made my visit to this perfumer, with one of the major motivation of recapturing the glamour and sophisticated Berliner lifestyle back in the pre-war era (also full of chaos and violence dated back then), if anyone has watched the TV series ‘Babylon Berlin’, you will probably understand it more.
The humble perfume boutique locates on Kantstraße in the city, without any extravagant nor excessive design but very approachable yet tidy display, the business is still run by the owner’s grandson, and the style and aesthetic of most of their fragrance are still maintained very original compare with the past dated back to the brand founded almost a century ago, the one thing that impressed me the most is their authenticity, very original on insisting all fragrance are made in Berlin, not too commercial and very humble in terms of their philosophy, on the other hand, it’s also very timeless and classic, one can also tell by the little detail from the bottling and label, the perfume jars and the way they arrange each scent and their grouping, taking one to experience the beauty of Berliner scent from light floral to woody, from gentle to intense. One of the most noteworthy fragrance, and the main reason I was there, is to get a bottle of Marlene’s favorite fragrance of this perfume house – ‘Veilchen’, the scent that is splendor, glamourous and gracious in fresh Violet, at the same time, the base note is rather intense just like this renowned actress herself, possessed both beautiful, sensual yet a substantial and persistent character that made her so powerful and seductive.
Another one that I got myself is the ‘Tulpe’, a gentle and comfortable scent from Tulip which reminds me of the sunny afternoon walking in the chic neighborhood in Berlin.
Before having a chance to visit Europe once again, wearing this quintessential Berliner fragrance has been good enough to satisfy my craving, at least for now, to remember the beauty and glamour of Marlene.