Print is dead! Long live print! Wallpaper*, Steidl, Karl Lagerfeld and Geza Schoen join forces to create perfume that smells of books

12th July, 2012

Fashion magazine, Wallpaper*; publishing house, Steidl; perfumer, Geza Schoen; and designer Karl Lagerfeld have teamed up to create a perfume that smells of freshly printed books. The idea was born at last year’s Wallpaper*Handmade exhibition in Milan, when the magazine wasinspired by a line from Gerhard Steidl in the film How to Make a Book with Steidl, in which he said that his favourite scent was "a freshlyprinted book".

Wallpaper* then asked Steidl to work with Schoen (pictured with Steidl) to create the juice – "It was hard," says Schoen. "The smell ofprinted paper is dry and fatty; they are not notes you oftenwork with."

Meanwhile, Steidl turned to Lagerfeld for advice on apackaging concept. Lagerfeld instantly visualised a realbook with pages and a hidden cut-out compartment tohouse the perfume bottle in the middle. In the front of thebook are short essays on the subject of paper by Lagerfeld,Schoen, German author and artist Günter Grass, andWallpaper* editor-in-chief Tony Chambers. "Beautiful paperis for me the top of luxury," writes Lagerfeld. "I am a paperfreak. It’s a physical passion. I cannot live without paper.Touching perfect paper has something sensuous about it."

The end result, which is featured in the annual Handmadeissue of Wallpaper* (out 12 July), is now going on saleonline and in selected concept stores, bookshops andperfumeries across the world. UK Ł68 / US $98 / EC €85Available at

* yes, the asterisk at the end of Wallpaper* is annoying.

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    • impdaddee | 12th July 2012 15:57

      As a librarian, this amuses me to no end. I love the look, feel, weight, and smell of a nicely bound hardcover book. It's a multisensory experience that an ebook cannot replicate.

      But, do I really want to smell like that which I deal with every day?

    • Mrs. Scents | 12th July 2012 16:56

      I'm not sure that the wonderful smell of a newly printed book could be replicated (nor the feeling you get when you smell the book that's in your hand!), but I would love to see what this fragrance smells like nonetheless!

    • scentsitivity | 12th July 2012 16:57

      I generally love the smell of old books and the smell of library stacks. Some modern books smell nice to me; others less so. Mid to late 19th century British volumes on decent quality paper smell especially heavenly to me.

    • CHSeifert | 12th July 2012 17:18

      I like this idea - love the smell of paper and old books - combine that with driftwood or cedar and you have a woody paper smell, that I will love and buy blind.

    • mumsy | 19th July 2012 20:58

      CB had done something similar with 'In the Library'