Smells like a day to shop

February 27, 1991|By Woody Hochswender | Woody Hochswender,N.Y. Time News Service

Most New Yorkers' experience with "environmental fragrance" or "aromatherapy" probably is limited to taxis with bottles of florid scent on the --board. Usually these are the same taxis that have "no smoking" written in 18 places in the cab.

But stand by. At a luncheon of the Fashion Group International, an organization of female fashion and cosmetic executives, the topic was "The Coming Age of Aroma-chology," or the effect of fragrance on behavior. Studies were cited, including one showing increased productivity at a Japanese construction company that introduced fragrance into the workplace and an experiment to increase sales at department stores by releasing a fragrance that is supposed to make shoppers more alert.

Of course, when scent is the topic, there's commerce in the air. The new "aroma technology" is expected to translate into enormous sales of cosmetics. Should it be taken seriously, however, until something is developed for use in subway entrances?


The new trend at fashion shows: standing up.

For the revived Perry Ellis Portfolio collection last week, buyers and editors stood in the showroom while models walked about.

For Anne Klein's new collection, A Line, it was the same story. The audience watched a video directed by the former designer David Cameron, then stood for a live presentation of the clothes.

It's cheaper, of course: the fashion house doesn't have to rent chairs. But it also represents a throwback to the 60's fashion "happening."

For the Andre Courreges party, the fashion throng in the lobby of the Paramount Hotel in New York had to look up to the balcony for a kinetic fashion presentation. It would have been deja vu all over again, in Yogi Berra's famous phrase, except that the bodies of today made the clothes seem so modern.

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