India inspires a new wave of perfumers

Neela Vermeire and 777’s sophisticated olfactory renditions of the country’s exotic allure

For those looking for delicious new scents, there are two brands to watch out for. While many a “nose” has created a fragrance inspired by India, Neela Vermeire has built a complete brand around that country’s exotic appeal, working with perfumer Bertrand Duchaufour to create “a romance of India in three fragrant chapters”. First is Trayee (pictured on left), a complex perfume with spicy notes that celebrates the Vedic era. Then there’s Mohur, a heady floral inspired by the Mughal period. And finally comes Bombay Bling (all £175 for 60ml), encapsulating the buzz of modern-day India’s big cities, beaches and Bollywood glitter through a joyful combination of fruit and spices, flowers and tobacco.

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Meanwhile, Parisian nose Stéphane Humbert Lucas launched his brand 777 in 2013 and it features a sophisticated take on traditional Middle Eastern ingredients. His latest scent, Qom Chilom (£235 for 60ml, pictured on right), is named after a holy city in Iran, but the perfume itself is inspired by India and pays homage to the jewelled 17th-century Peacock Throne from the Red Fort in Delhi. The bottle is decorated with a peacock feather that looks like a wisp of smoke, referencing both the throne and the chilom, the pipe that originated in India, often using water infused with cherry elixirs. Cherry is a major ingredient in the scent, but there’s also oud, heliotrope and patchouli.

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