Geranium 30 is Le Labo’s newest collaboration with Opening Ceremony and fashion’s favorite florist Thierry Boutemy, though perhaps they should have added the word decaying to the front of the name. This bud is not sweet. But in the perfume world, where sweet is a descriptor best saved for celebrity fragrances that include notes like “red-velvet cupcake accord,” this isn’t necessarily a bad thing.
Boutemy is best known for the sweet and slightly zany floral arrangements seen in Sofia Coppola’s Marie Antoinette, and that same quirky flower sensibility is seen in Geranium 30. Opening Ceremony and Boutemy created photographs showing floral designs in various states of disrepair — whether smashed, broken, or decaying — and these inspired the limited-edition scent, which channels floral dishabille.
Fabrice Penot of Le Labo famously doesn’t like to talk about the top notes in his scents, telling the Opening Ceremony blog that “explanation kills art” and people should just “put it on, let go, and experience.” The scent of Geranium 30 is best described as a floral non-floral. It’s not like that of mums or grandmotherly and has the slight indolic smell of funeral flowers after three days. There’s also an interesting briny note to the fragrance, which made me think, “Pickle juice.” Several colleagues agreed. So, close your eyes, spray on Geranium 30, and see where it takes you. Perhaps it’s to flowers and pickle-back shots, which, altogether, are not unpleasant things.