IN BLOOM

VOGUE Australia - - Contents - ART DI­REC­TION DIJANA SA­VOR PHO­TO­GRAPH ED­WARD URRUTIA

Alessan­dro Michele lends his Mi­das touch to fra­grance with Gucci Bloom.

Since his colour-coura­geous, lady-like sil­hou­ettes ex­ploded at Gucci, Alessan­dro Michele has held the fash­ion world in the palm of his hand. Now he lends his Mi­das touch to fra­grance, which he de­scribes not as a love, but an ‘ob­ses­sion’. On the re­lease of Gucci Bloom, Michele muses on pinch­ing fla­cons from his grand­mother’s dresser and why fra­grance might just be the ul­ti­mate col­lectable. As told to Remy Rip­pon.

Igrew up steal­ing the per­fume of my mother and grand­mother. They had the most beau­ti­ful bot­tles ev­ery­where and they didn’t throw them away. They were ob­sessed with per­fume. I had a lot of dif­fer­ent per­fumes. Now, I have big shelves – full, full, full of per­fume. It’s like ther­apy. There is some­thing very mag­i­cal in­side a per­fume. It’s re­ally like every sin­gle bot­tle be­longs for a rea­son. One is full of flow­ers. In one you can feel a rainy day. One is win­ter. One is sum­mer. One is spring. One for when I’m sad. One for when I’m happy. I mean, every sin­gle per­fume has a mean­ing for me, even if I’m not wear­ing it. The re­la­tion be­tween me and per­fume is kind of an ob­ses­sion – like every sin­gle ob­ject I col­lect.

“The de­sign of the bot­tle came about be­fore we de­cided to put this per­fume in­side. I was in love with the shade of pink and the idea of ce­ramic. I was look­ing for some­thing beau­ti­ful that you can keep in your bed­room. It’s the idea that you can keep a beau­ti­ful per­fume like an ob­ject. I love ob­jects, so I try al­ways to put a bit of soul in­side of the ob­ject, like a col­lec­tor. So the ob­ject means some­thing.

“The most im­por­tant thing also was to re­ally feel the green in­side, the gar­den. I didn’t want to smell some­thing that is just a per­fume. We needed to feel the gar­den. I tried, with Al­berto [Mo­ril­las, the per­fumer], to put some­thing that is not just beau­ti­ful in­side the scent. I think that’s the con­tra­dic­tion be­tween the idea of the per­fume that is re­ally chic and re­ally tra­di­tional, in the way of a beau­ti­ful flower, and green. And the con­tra­dic­tion is that it’s Gucci.

“It could be risky in this mar­ket, be­cause for a big brand like Gucci this is the kind of scent that is a lit­tle bit more niche. But I think that is the right time to show some­thing that is very ver­sa­tile. I think that the idea I have of fash­ion is very per­sonal – it’s strange that it is be­long­ing to a lot of peo­ple.

“When it comes to my work, I don’t feel the pres­sure. I think that au­then­tic­ity is key, be­cause I don’t try to do some­thing that is not my cul­ture, not my way to live. I think that be­ing a cre­ative per­son is some­thing that re­flects what you are every day. You can’t in­vent some­thing that is not you, not your en­vi­ron­ment, not your way to be. It’s about a dream that be­longs to you. Per­fume and scents are one of the most rel­e­vant ex­pres­sions of the things that don’t ex­ist … It’s the mem­ory of things that you can’t re­ally touch or see, but you can re­ally feel it.”

“I didn’t want to smell some­thing that is just a per­fume. We needed to feel the gar­den. I tried to put some­thing that is not just beau­ti­ful in­side the scent”

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