Blog post by Gwen
Occasionally, I pick up my dog-eared copy of ‘Perfumes: The Guide 2018’ by Turin and Sanchez and look through it, hoping to discover something I’d overlooked before. The last time I did this, the book fell open to a review of Twilly d’Hermès: “Not since Fracas (Piquet, 29148) set the tone for all the big splashy tuberoses – Oscar de la Renta et al – that have come through since, has any perfumer done just to the wild weirdness of this material until now. In the short time since Christine Nagel took over Jean Claude Elléna’s throne at Hermès in 2014, she has generated two grand perfumes, Galop and Twilly….’
I placed a big check mark by Sanchez’s five-star review, stuck a Post-it Note on the page saying, ‘Try Twilly!’ and then forgot about it. A few weeks later, when I saw Twilly at the airport in Paris, I tried it, and a beautiful relationship was born.
Launched in 2017, Twilly d’Hermès was inspired by Hermès’ iconic skinny, silk, Twilly scarf. Named for the 'twill' weave pattern used to make the material drape, the Twilly was introduced in the 1930s and was designed to wrap around the handles of your Hermès bag to protect them from wear and to give your bag a little personality. Of course, people found more creative ways to wear their Twilly’s: as belts, headbands, bracelets, you get the idea. In fact, each bottle of the fragrance comes with a colourful strip of Twilly scarf wrapped around the bowler-hat black cap, which suggests the scent is jaunty, carefree and playful. And so it is.
Twilly d’Hermès is built around three notes: tuberose, ginger and sandalwood, and it’s the way these notes are manipulated and blended that makes it so gotta-have-it! It opens with a nose-tingling tartness from bergamot that gives Twilly a zesty excitement. As it blooms, tuberose moves in. This is not a big, dirty, animalic, sexy tuberose. This is a coquettish tuberose, cleaner, fresher, playful and flirty but still indolic, buttery and seductive. It’s an intriguing new expression of tuberose, which I find irresistible. At about this point in its development, I expect a fruity note to waft its way into the mix; ginger shows up instead. It’s spicy and sharp, adding warmth and vivacity to the tuberose. There’s a woodiness at the base from sandalwood, which is more creamy than milky, and it perfectly pairs with the tuberose. The beauty of Twilly, for me, is how it reveals different aspects over time – sometimes green, sometimes floral, sometimes camphorous. And sometimes, it smells old yet new, familiar yet unusual, but always enticing. Twilly is the scent of a light-hearted fling, not a deep seduction, which makes it ideal for carefree summer days and nights.
Twilly is aimed at young women, but that doesn’t mean any woman can’t or shouldn’t wear it. What woman reading this hasn’t been mischievous, cheeky or saucy at times - amiright? Twilly d’Hermès belongs to all of us.
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