In the House is a feature on EauMG. I’m collecting my experiences from years of perfume sampling and putting together a quick brand overview. There are so many perfume lines out there that it can be overwhelming. My goal with this is to quickly introduce people to niche and indie lines that may be of interest to them.
Who’s in the house? L’Artisan Parfumeur
The History: L’Artisan Parfumeur is one of the respected elders of niche perfumes. This French perfume house was founded in 1976 by perfumer, Jean Laporte (he later went on to found Maîre Parfumeur et Gantier). Launching the classic Mûre et Musc in 1978, the brand put itself on the niche perfume map. In its 36 year lifetime, L’Artisan has collaborated with many perfumers creating many cult-classic blends that are loved by perfumistas and often imitated by others in the industry 😉
The Perfumers: The brand is smart and have collaborated with gifted perfumers such as Olivia Giacobetti, Bertrand Duchaufour and Jean-Claude Ellena. Other perfumes include: Anne Flipo, Karine Vinchon, Elisabeth Maier, Dora Baghriche-Arnaud, Karine Vinchon Spehner, Celine Ellena, Jean-Francois Laporte and Michel Almairac. As you can see, they have their sight set on “superstar” perfumers. The feature a nice perfumer profile on their website.
My impressions of the brand: L’Artisan is one of those brands that has a little of everything. As the result of a diverse group of perfumers and 35+ years of exploring different concepts and trends, you’re going to find less of a “theme” throughout the line. They have a lot perfumes that I like and a lot that don’t like. Some houses have perfumes that share common “DNA” but I don’t think that is the case with L’Artisan. They sort of say “hey, perfumers, do whatever but don’t get too crazy or break the bank”.
Brand’s strengths: Like I said in the “impressions section”, this brand has a wide range and there aren’t many redundancies within the line. The brand also knows how to pair a great perfumer with their strengths (or at least holding them accountable to their “vision”). This brand has good distribution internationally, making them easier to “try before you buy”.
Brand’s weaknesses: The line is huge, too big in my opinion. Some people find expansive lines like this overwhelming. Like I said, the line is diverse so someone may try one and despise it and never try the others thinking that many of them are the “same”. One of the things I dislike about this brand – they are always discontinuing popular scents. Sometimes they come back, sometimes they don’t. Heck, it may even come back with a new name. It’s very frustrating to feel like you can’t “trust” a brand. They may discontinue any of your favorites any day now…you don’t know. It feels so random. L’Artisan has given me perfume trust issues.
I have tried: All of them except the three newest Explosions d’Emotions (2014) and a few of the discontinued scents.
My favorite/s from the line that I’ve tried: This is very difficult for me. So, I’m thinking “which ones would make you the most upset if they were discontinued?”. And my answer would be Dzing!, Voleur de Roses, Safran Troublant, Bois Farine and Drole de Rose. I own Voleur de Roses and Bois Farine. And I love their Amber Ball.It’s one of the best frivolous purchases that I’ve ever made.
My least favorite from the line: Fleur de Liane. That doesn’t agree with me at all. I have complicated relationships with Batucada, Traversee du Bosphore and Seville a L’Aube. I don’t dislike those last three, but it’s complicated. I’m also not super impressed with the Explosions d’Emotions that I’ve tried but that’s mainly me being grumpy about their price.
You may like some of the perfumes in this brand if you like perfumes like: This isn’t easy to answer since they have a wide range. I would say gourmands that aren’t too foody, sexy florals, or woodsy scents. They also do fruity nicely.
Does the brand offer samples or a discovery set? Around the holidays the brand has discovery sets/minis as limited editions. They also have “The Perfume Box” of samples but it contains only a few. Some of their vendors sell samples (that aren’t manufacturer’s samples).
Available products by this brand: perfumes, candles, reed diffusers, amber balls, sachets and body products.
Price range: Perfumes are $100-$225. Home fragrances range from $60-$85. Amber balls range $90-$550 (size of a basketball). Body Wash is $40.
Where to buy? The brand has boutiques around the globe and can me found at many retailers from small boutiques to high end department stores. Here’s their store locator. The brand is also sold on the company’s site. In the US, it can be found at retailers such as Beautyhabit, Twisted Lily, Aedes and Luckyscent. And yes, even Sephora is carrying a few of their scents now.
I haven’t had such trouble picking out my “must-try” perfumes. It really depends on what you like. I have a list of two versions. The first list is more woodsy and the second list is more floral. Now if you want to “discover” this line, try a mix from both lists. Or choose six that “sound” good to you. But, you must try Dzing!
My Top Six “Must-Try” Picks – Version 1.0
This is my list for those that tend to like woodsier scents and tend to dislike light or floral scents.
Voleur de Rose – A dirty, earthy patchouli rose. It was around before the market was flooded with these.
Dzing! – Old books and musk. Some people get barnyard funk. If you can only try one perfume from L’Artisan, try this.
Mure et Musc Extreme – It’s a more intense version of the blackberry musk that put L’Artisan on the map. Reminds me of late August.
Al Oudh – Spicy skank. When this one works for you, it works.
Bois Farine – Sweet, bready woods. So Ellena-esque.
Fou d’Absinthe – Spicy pine. Don’t think of it as absinthe, think of it as a Southern pine forest.
My Top Six “Must-Try” Picks – Version 2.0
This list is for those that prefer florals over woodsy.
Dzing! – See above, everyone should try this one.
Mure et Musc Extreme – See above. It’s their classic. It’s their “Chanel No. 5”.
Nuit de Tubereuse – Hefty tuberose with some darkness.
La Chasse Aux Papillons – Flirty, fleeting white florals. Worth sampling to see L’Artisan’s sheer side.
Safran Troublant – Spicy rose attar with vanilla. Sugar and spice and everything nice.
Want more In the House?
*Logo from ambergris.fr. Covent Garden boutique from Basenotes. Mure et Musc pic from www.canadianbeauty.com. Amber Ball from Luckyscent. L’Artisan bottles from Fragrantica. Dzing and Safran Troublant from Luckyscent.