It has often been said that the scents of the great Jean Claude Ellena are like watercolours. The ingredients are blended with such masterful grace that you cannot see where one begins and another ends. Indeed it seems almost pointless to analyse his fragrances note by note, since the final symphony is the masterpiece, rather than each orchestral unit.
My esteemed fellow blogger The Perfumed Dandy has likened JC Ellena scents to Pointillism rather than watercolours and this metaphor makes a great deal of sense. Once upon a time I stood very close to Seurat’s stunning “Bathing at Asnière”, and close up, trying to analyse his skill was indeed pointless, if you’ll pardon the pun. Close up it was a blurred mess of greys and pastels: blob over blob, making no sense at all. It was only as I stood back and looked from the back of the room that you can see how skilful the artist is.
And that my dear readers, is how I see Hermes Kelly Caleche. It’s the overall picture, not the individual notes. Yes there are lots of ingredients, including Violet, Rose and Mimosa, all of which can be clearly detected, but it is impossible to talk about Kelly Caleche without mentioning the gentle use of Leather. Could Leather ever be so delicate when done with floral notes? In this case yes. Despite Leather being largely considered a heavyweight, or associated with strong notes such as Tobacco or Spice, here it is surrounded by watery flower petals, as delicate as butterfly wings.
The lasting impression that Kelly Caleche gives me is of a shop that sells nothing but very expensive leather riding boots. If you need to look at the price tag, you can’t afford it. The leather is highly polished and glossy, no Cuir de Russie horsiness here. Behind the coiffed assistant (who is always French in my scenario), there is a vase of Mimosa and Roses. Someone is eating a Parma Violet (probably me). The leather fills the room and joins the flowers in one gorgeous glorious fragrance.
And that is what Kelly Caleche says to me. Stand back and admire.