Armin Heinemann and the Hippies
Uncommented fragrance No. 151
I first entered Ibiza in the early 1970s as a child and I am still grateful to my mother for this to this day, as she was obviously so infected by the hippie lifestyle, which was so little noticeable in our everyday lives except for a few bell-bottoms and white blouses, that by 71 it must have been a holiday on the white island. That was formative. Later, therefore, I went there even more often from the 80s (with my girlfriend at that time and today's wife) and later with our children, even though Ibiza did not become a preferred destination. The spirit that the islands of Ibiza and Formentera still radiate in a magical way, at least in autumn, when the hosts of celebrators have moved on like migratory birds, is something I carry in my heart. This is an attitude to life that for most people remains only connected to a utopia, but for this very reason it can have a great effect.
One of the most famous hippies on the island was Armin Heinemann, whose cult boutique Paula's was one of the main attractions of the hippie community (as communities were then called) in the Seventies. Printed over and over all the walls with the legendary flower patterns, it was opened there when you thought it was advisable, and the fashion from the store was something that would be called a cult today.
Around 2000 the shop closed, Armin Heinemann went into a possibly well-deserved retirement, tried to live on as a legend and waited. Then, about three years ago, Loewe's creative director Jonathan Anderson had the idea of bringing the Paula's collections back to life. The fascinating thing for me is that hippie fashion has already experienced so many revivals that there must be something about it: spirit, spiritual, essential, something that deep down inside most people makes something shine. Maybe it's also due to Armin Heinemann, who is back there, bringing his "vibrations" into the collection and continues to live on his legendary finca without electricity and water and with a natural shower. Occasionally a camera team from German television visits him and presents him like an exotic animal from the zoo. I hope and suspect that the Sympathling makes it pay well. He would have deserved it.
And now the fragrance for the sensitively expensive Paula's collection from Loewe, which does not fit the lifestyle and budget of the average hippie in the 70s. The cute shreds easily cost a few hundred and are featured in Vogue & Co. by top models.
Is the fragrance worth the cinnabar around the old new brand? Surely it can't be, unless you've just mixed a bottle of patchouli oil with a few grams of grass and bottled it and laughed to death that some fashionistas out there would have paid a few hundred for it too, but this is something completely different, a rather bright, fresh fragrance that goes very naturally with its rainbow bottle.
The ingredients, along with all the Hare Krishna melancholy, made me decide to give this blindbuy to my wife. Just like that. I'll tell her how she liked it on occasion.
Let's take an unpippably correct approach and check the ingredients.
Galbanum: Yes, it smells good and I am glad about that.
Coconut water: Fits actually quite well and it concerns here not these sweet Bounty variants, but really almost coconut WATER! Very fresh, very neutral, not very sweet, like from the coconut of Lake Toba on Sumatra, where I was a student* with my wife in the early 90s and where time stood still and the hippies there didn't realize that the year was 1990 and not 1970.
Then it fruits a little bit, but I always like tangerine, which is supposed to be in there, and who knows if there isn't a bit of fruit ester or whatever in there. It still doesn't smell bad.
Speaking of Indonesia, I have to mention that there is also Indonesian patchouli up there, but even though you might have expected it, it hardly smells like it here. What a pity!
Of the rest, I smell frangipani, which is so beautiful to wear in your hair when it is long, and all in all, the fragrance has a lot of hippie flair, even if I would have expected more The whole thing is of course somehow a hype for old and new hippies, but what does it matter when the fragrance has become so nice and pretty. Surely, some people will hate it, but I can't do that because I probably stood in Armin's boutique with my mother as a child and who knows if this batik t-shirt, which I loved to wear this summer 71, didn't come from there.
My mother couldn't remember. Neither could I. I was four.