What Happens When a Basketball Player Ventures into Candle-Making
I never really cared too much for perfumes. Maison Margiela’s Replica collection surprisingly ended up impressing me, but I recently formed an obsession for a specific line’s eau de parfums and candles after a life-changing half hour conversation with an employee at Barneys. After testing out at least 15 different perfumes from Atelier Bloem, I was led to an entire table of candles, and got lost in the world of Ben Gorham.
Ben Gorham, a Swedish basketball player, is the mastermind behind Byredo and its line of candles and perfumes. The idea behind his fragrances is to connect scent and memory, which is essentially what the entire Replica collection is intended to do. Gorham just does it better. He doesn't want to merely imitate experiences; he wants people to experience the smallest intricacies of his works. His first perfumes were all inspired by childhood experiences, such as the synesthetic green of his father's cologne.
For his newer scents, he adds the idea or expectation of scents into the fragrances. His newest scent Tulipe plays off the idea that people expect that flower to lack a scent, yet his imagination takes us into his fantasy.
Some of my favorite scents by Gorham are Ambre Japonais and Cotton Poplin, the former being a dark, warm scent that reminds me of everything that the fall season should be. The scent that really sold me was Cotton Poplin, though. For me, the scent evokes memories of Sunday morning laundry in Topeka, Kansas, giving me a light-heartedly sentimental yet valuable nostalgic experience.
Other popular scents include Bibliotheque, a leathery scent, and Rose Noir, which is a heavy floral fragrance. For a limited time, Bibliotheque is also available as a cologne. Usually, the products are available in both perfume and candle versions, but I personally prefer the airy subtlety of the candles.
In terms of price, Byredo products are around $80 per candle and $150 per eau de parfum. They're available at Barney's, Neiman Marcus, and its own online store. Given the steep price tag, it would make for a perfect seasonal or birthday gift.
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