Blog post by Gwen
The one question I’m most often asked about trying and buying perfumes is: where do I start? You can start with notes you like or think you like; you can start with a brand you know; you can start with asking what friends like, but at the end of the day, I answer the question like this: just start. Just jump in anywhere to learn what you like. And always keep an open mind. Don’t assume all flankers are money grabs; reformulations are bad, and brands you might not share an aesthetic with couldn’t create a perfume you would like.
Case in point: Let it Rock by Vivienne Westwood.
Vivienne Westwood was an English fashion designer who introduced 70’s biker/punk rock fashion into the mainstream when she began making and selling her clothes in the boutique that she and her partner, punk rock music promoter Malcolm McLaren ran on the King’s Road, called SEX. When he asked her to make clothes for his clients, the Sex Pistols, things took off. She opened more shops in London and, over time, expanded all over Britain and the world. She also began selling a wide range of merchandise, including perfumes.
The whole punk rock aesthetic never appealed to me, but a good perfume always does. Browsing at a perfume counter one day, I saw a tester of Let it Rock. I had to take a chance, try something new, and open myself up to new possibilities. What if it smelled like nasty/biker punk…stuff? No, I had to take my own advice and try it on my skin. I loved it.
Let it Rock was created by one of my favourite perfumers: Marie Salamagne, the nose behind such beauties as 22 Settembre 2007 ore 8 Vaporetto per il Lido Venezia, Alaia and By the Fireplace, among others.
Named for the King’s Road shop Westwood and McClaren opened in 1971. Let it Rock, starts with citrusy, bitter, bergamot and juicy, sweet mandarin, giving way to a peppery note of freesia. Beautifully fresh and floral, there is a whiff of anise-like tarragon from the freesia that is just heart-grabbing. As it develops, the freesia blooms and leads to a wild heart of sweet, narcotic, animalic jasmine, its floral aspect highlighted by a touch of lush rose. Skin heat brings amber up from the base. It’s sticky sweet, warm and resinous and it’s joined by a soft note of earthy, woody patchouli that’s been dirtied up just a bit with coumarin. The beauty of Let it Rock is how it goes from bright and light to deep and dark.
The drydown is a little sweet, warm, dirty, and surprisingly beautiful and sophisticated. There’s no leather jacket, spikes, or studded belts. This is more velvet than ripped jeans.
Life is all about chances, choices and change and when it comes to fragrance, my advice is to open yourself up to scents you might overlook because who wants to risk missing out on something wonderful?
Check out Let it Rock in our Shop.