Dries Van Noten par Frederic Malle : New Fragrance

Frédéric Malle partnered with the Belgian fashion designer Dries Van Noten to present its new fragrance, Dries Van Noten par Frédéric Malle.  The WWD reports that it will be the first in a series of fragrance portraits from Editions de Parfums. “It’s not a duet between the perfumer and myself [as in the previous Editions de Parfums fragrances], it’s literally a ménage à trois,” explained Malle. Antwerp based Dries Van Noten is renowned for his eclectic, layered designs that emphasize colors, textures and prints.

frederic malle dries van noten

Created by IFF perfumer Bruno Jovanovic, Dries Van Noten par Frédéric Malle is a woody oriental with notes of lemon, sandalwood, jasmine, musks, saffron, and vanilla. It’s described as rich and creamy.

Dries Van Noten par Frédéric Malle is launching on February 15th worldwide and in the US, in April. 50ml/$185 and 100ml/$265. Via  WWD



  • Erin: Ohhhh! I can’t wait to try it. But why is it taking so long to reach the US? February 1, 2013 at 8:37am Reply

    • Victoria: Not sure, but at least it will be there soon! February 1, 2013 at 11:45am Reply

  • Marc: I’m not familiar with Bruno Jovanovic’s work, but it’s always interesting to smell anything FMalle. Thanks for the news. February 1, 2013 at 9:41am Reply

    • Victoria: You’re welcome! Bruno Jovanovic worked on quite a few fragrances, but my favorites by him are Vivienne Westwood Naughty Alice, Armani Onde Extase and colognes for Thirdman. February 1, 2013 at 11:47am Reply

  • nastja: Sounds like a perfect winter/spring borderline fragrance. Just curious, what is meant by “musks”? I have a fraught relationship with musk in some perfumes, while in others I love the animalic musty note. Is there a whole range of notes that’s meant by the term? Thanks! February 1, 2013 at 9:43am Reply

    • Rachel: Victoria has a great article on musks, which I found helpful when I couldn’t make heads or tails of this note.

      My skin likes some musks and hates others. People go crazy over Narciso Rodriguez for Her, but on me it smells like nail polish remover. SJP Lovely smells great though. Go figure! February 1, 2013 at 9:48am Reply

      • nastja: Thanks, Rachel, and Victoria for the post! No wonder our responses to musk are so varied, given the huge variety of products that fall under the umbrella. Didn’t know about fabric softeners! February 1, 2013 at 11:00am Reply

        • Victoria: Glad that you found it helpful! Yes, musks are used a lot in household products. The classical Downy fabric softener is a good example of a white musk scent. But it’s also interesting how many of us perceive musks in such a different way. February 1, 2013 at 11:51am Reply

          • nikki: great article about musk, Victoria! so glad to know that the deer are protected now. February 1, 2013 at 12:17pm Reply

            • Victoria: They’re protected, but unfortunately, they are hunted down still, since the musk pouches are considered to have aphrodisiac properties in the traditional Chinese medicine. I guess, for some it’s more exotic than Viagra. The musk deer is on the brink of extinction for this reason. February 1, 2013 at 12:22pm Reply

    • Victoria: It’s hard to say exactly which musks they use, especially since I haven’t tried the perfume yet. Since many of people are anosmic to some types of musks, perfumers use a mixture of different ones to make sure that the perfume has a decent tenacity. It doesn’t sound like it would be animalic though. February 1, 2013 at 11:49am Reply

  • Bela: Why isn’t Bruno Jovanovic’s name on the bottle? All the previous noses’ names appear on the bottles. What’s different about this fragrance? February 1, 2013 at 9:47am Reply

    • Victoria: That’s an interesting observation, J! Maybe, because it’s a portrait of Dries Van Noten and that’s what Malle wanted to emphasize? February 1, 2013 at 11:52am Reply

      • Bela: I wonder if Monsieur Malle is getting tired of being an ‘éditeur’. Since most people already say, ‘I’m wearing such and such ‘by Frédéric Malle, why not just forget about mentioning the noses’ names, eh?

        Actually, it looks like he is trying to take credit for a lot of things these days: the name of the English translator of his book De l’art du parfum (On Perfume Making) was also omitted. I queried this when Aleta reviewed the book on NST. Carmencanada said this: ‘Bela, I haven’t seen the English version, but at the Paris launch of the book the subject of translation came up. Frédéric Malle told me he reworked the initial version quite a lot, but never denied there’d been a translator.’ (Which is not quite the same as volunteering that there was one, is it?)

        I was one hundred per cent certain FM couldn’t have translated the book himself: he’s not fluent enough in English, and translating requires more than fluency anyway. He only got away with not mentioning the name of the translator because that profession is not as well protected in English-speaking countries as it is in France. February 2, 2013 at 9:37am Reply

        • Victoria: Perhaps, the translator didn’t want to be mentioned in the end, if his/her text was changed significantly. I’m not sure though, but I agree with you that translation (despite what many people think) is extremely hard. There are a couple of professional translators in my family, and I know from their experience what a task it is to render the meaning of the text properly, retaining the author’s voice and style. February 3, 2013 at 2:32am Reply

          • Bela: What is possible is that the publishers employed a non-professional translator and paid them a fee instead of an advance on royalties, as is customary in France. This would enable the publishers to omit the translator’s name legally.

            I have been a professional translator for nigh on 40 years and I still find the work challenging. February 3, 2013 at 12:12pm Reply

  • Rachel: I wondered the same thing as Bela. Why is Bruno’s name missing? Especially if it’s meant as a ménage à trois. February 1, 2013 at 9:49am Reply

  • maggiecat: This sounds lovely – I hope to be able to try it when it’s available in the U.S.! February 1, 2013 at 12:00pm Reply

    • Victoria: I agree, it sounds very good. Plus, Frederic Malle has such an eye for style and quality, so even if I don’t fall in love with all of his fragrances, I admire them very much. February 1, 2013 at 12:02pm Reply

  • george: This and 1932 to try- so exciting! February 1, 2013 at 12:03pm Reply

    • Victoria: And the new Lutens too. I look forward to the spring launches! February 1, 2013 at 12:17pm Reply

      • Jenna: I also look forward to trying Francis Kurkdjian’s new perfumes. February 2, 2013 at 3:09am Reply

        • Victoria: I especially liked the idea of Cashmere Oud, based on the descriptions. February 3, 2013 at 2:33am Reply

  • L.: Has Frederic Malle joined the growing list of celebs abusing and misusing the term “literally”? Doesn’t ménage à trois literally mean three people living together in a house? Unless Malle, Van Noten and Jovanovic actually lived together for a time while they co-authored this perfume, Malle has misspoken. Or does Malle mean they literally had a ménage à trios in the figurative sense? And when does ménage à trios in any figurative sense not involve three people? February 1, 2013 at 12:06pm Reply

    • Victoria: Yes, we can probably rule that out. 🙂 February 1, 2013 at 12:18pm Reply

  • Mel: Hi, V. Do we know the identities of the other fragrance “portraits” from the WWD article?

    (Also, I’ve been making your chicken kofta at least twice a month since you shared your recipe. Love it!) February 1, 2013 at 2:05pm Reply

    • Victoria: They weren’t mentioned, so there is a bit of suspense. 🙂

      I’m so happy that you like the chicken kofta recipe. I sometimes also make them much smaller and cook them in soup for a twist of our favorite family classic. February 1, 2013 at 3:11pm Reply

  • Jenna: I like the way it sounds. Looking forward to trying it! February 2, 2013 at 3:08am Reply

  • Raluca: Looking forward to trying this! To me this one sounds more like a winter fragrance but they are launching it in the spring. Just an observation. 🙂 February 2, 2013 at 12:16pm Reply

    • Victoria: Hard to say for me based on the notes alone. Even woods can be made sheer and delicate. February 3, 2013 at 2:30am Reply

  • Mihaela Kristal: Everything with saffron is a must try for me. There is never enough saffron in a perfume and there aren’t enough saffron parfums out there! I’m just a bit worried the soffran might not play the key note in this! February 2, 2013 at 1:01pm Reply

    • Victoria: I’m also curious how it will turn out. February 3, 2013 at 2:29am Reply

      • Daisy: Yes, the saffron has me officially excited! I’m noticing a spring saffron trend; the new one from Carner Barcelona has saffron too. February 4, 2013 at 11:15pm Reply

  • HB: This sounds amazing. I have actually not yet delved into the world of Frederic Malle and have a short list of ones to try first – am adding DVN to it. February 2, 2013 at 1:47pm Reply

    • Victoria: It really does. Plus, Bruno is a talented perfumer, so I have high expectations for this fragrance. February 3, 2013 at 2:29am Reply

  • Tralala: Let’s hope it’s not “literally a menage a trois” because really all I want is a perfume… February 3, 2013 at 8:11pm Reply

  • Joan: Oh wow! I’d love to try this! February 5, 2013 at 4:33pm Reply

  • Rowanhill: I got to have a sniff of this on someone’s wrist. It was pure comfort and delight. Unless it turns flat or horrid on my skin, a full bottle will be purchased as soon as I have time to take a tram to the shop. February 19, 2013 at 4:21am Reply

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