Monday, 11 September 2017

STEPHAN'S SIX - HANS HENDLEY


With a start in photography and music, Hans Hendley was flexing his creative muscle from an early age. Pretty soon he realised that his philosophies and ideals didn’t really fit the strict commercial path and so he moved to New York to begin working with what he described as “small spirited brands”. Always fascinated by perfume, he launched his own range in October 2014. With the recent release of his ninth fragrance, Mown, I thought that it was time to find out a little more about Hans Hendley as I asked him “Stephan’s Six”.

What is the first smell that you can remember?
Probably the smell of trees and wood. Our house was in the middle of the pine forest and was built almost entirely out of wood - cedar, pine and oak. We also had a wood-burning fireplace for heating so there was always that faint smell of wood smoke in the cold months. I suppose those types of smells make me feel comforted, like home and childhood.

What was the first perfume you remember your mum or dad wearing?
I remember my Mom gifting my Dad a bottle of Drakkar Noir in the eighties when it was super popular. It was so strong and loud that I think we all kind of laughed about it because everyone knew when it had been sprayed.

What was the perfume of your twenties?
I actually didn't wear much fragrance in my twenties. During my late teens Acqua Di Gio by Armani was my favourite, but by the time I went to collage it was just so popular that I smelled it on everyone, so I stopped wearing it and never really replaced it with anything. Having lived through the aquatic, 'sport' scent glory days of the nineties, I think I was also pretty fed up with the way fragrances were presented so I just began to ignore everything. It wasn't until years later when a friend introduced me to niche things like Serge Lutens, Frederic Malle etc. that I began to take interest in perfumes again.

What was your biggest perfume mistake?
Wow I don't know how to pick just one! Since I make perfumes, I would have to say that my mistakes are mostly around learning how perfume works technically. I've spilled super strong raw materials on things, I've made some absolutely terrible blends and I’ve tried so many experiments that didn't work out at all.

You can only choose one perfume?
Right now I would choose Bois des Iles by Chanel. It has so many of the qualities I enjoy in a perfume and it's appropriate for just about any season or setting. It's timeless and sophisticated.

What perfume should I try?
I have to do a shameless plug here and say that everyone needs to try my newest perfume called Mown. It's a really unique take on a late summer, harvest season scent with hay, tobacco, dried fruits and moss. I don't think there is anything else like it.

For more information about Hans, his fragrances and stockists you can visit the website at www.hendleyperfumes.com or go to his Instagram page.

[Image of Bois des Iles © Pixel London]
[Image of Hans Hendley © Ace Boothby]

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