Star rating: 5 stars–outstanding/potential classic, 4 stars–very good, 3 stars–adequate, 2 stars–disappointing, 1 star–poor.
Although many fashion houses such as Yves Saint Laurent, Gucci and Calvin Klein, to name a few, are equally renowned for their fragrances, the new additions to Gianfranco Ferré’s portfolio have been long overdue. At last, here comes Ferré, a perfume of modern aesthetic sensibility and classical elegance. It artfully conjures the water drenched purple petals and the cool silk with its layers of transparent floral accords modulated by the weightless softness of its oriental base. The leitmotif of iris courses through the composition that maintains a fine balance between the sweet floral and the earthy metallic elements of iris root. Created by Pierre Bourdon in 2005, Ferré is a fine example of a modern composition fusing light into every single twist of its development. …
Like Bourdon’s other iris etude, a stately Iris Poudré, Ferré plays up the floral nuances to create a seamless transition between the sweetness of rose, the opulence of magnolia and the chilly silkiness of iris. The effect is similar to the brushwork in the Impressionist paintings, where the line between the shadow and the object throwing it becomes obscure. In Iris Poudré, the aldehydes lend the misty quality; however, in Ferré, the focus is on heightened clarity. It is the transparency of leaves against the bright sun, the lucid crispness of air after a rainstorm, the gossamer lightness of fine silk.
The sheer fruity top notes bear no relation to the cloying fruit salad accords that grace many feminine compositions created over the past decade. In fact, they demonstrate how alluring the combination of fruit and flower can be–their touch of delectable sweetness is like nectar collecting at the base of a blossom. My favorite aspect of Ferré is its gorgeous sillage, a scented trail that follows the wearer. Warm, rich and yet delicate, it calls to mind a quote I recently encountered in an interview with Jean-Claude Ellena, “Sillage, this is the aroma, the aura that surrounds you…. I search for subtility, presence, and transparence. Others create a wall. I reject this. I like to see a person.” Indeed, Ferré would prompt a second look.
The elegant contents match the striking bottle created by Serge Mansau. Its architectural lines recall Gianfranco Ferré’s designs that gained him fame as “Frank Lloyd Wright of Fashion.” Ferré includes notes of bergamot, iris leaves, honeydew melon, pineapple, freesia, iris petals, jasmine, rose, ylang-ylang, magnolia, basmati rice, Florentine iris root, amber, vanilla. The fragrance should not be confused either with Ferré by Ferré, a discontinued soft floral bouquet created in 1991, nor with Gianfranco Ferré, a fresh white floral melody launched in 1984. Ferré is available from Nordstrom, Saks5thAvenue, Neiman Marcus and Gianfranco Ferré boutiques.