French fragrance brand AKRO recently launched their latest scent INK (incase you missed it: read about it here) and just last week, they released a limited edition case designed by London street artist Robert Bondar. We got a chance to sit down with the AKRO founders Jack Miskelly and Anaïs Cresp to get better acquainted.
The family fragrance house launched in 2018 with six scents, which, at risk of being too literal – we cannot get enough of. The line is inspired by the visceral memories and sensory experiences evoked by our favourite addictions.
It’s not surprising the collaboration of these three founders’ has made such a special fragrance line. Partners (in biz and love) Jack Miskelly and Anaïs Cresp met working in London bars, together they followed nightlife, then love, and finally fragrance a path very well paved by third AKRO founder, Anais’s dad, master perfumer Oliver Cresp.
Yes, that Oliver Cresp. If you know perfumery, it’s a name that means a lot, and still, if you don’t, there is one of his you will recognize. A legend in the perfume industry, he has created many of the world’s signatures with brands including Dior, Yves Saint Laurent, Dolce & Gabbana (if you haven’t worn Light Blue, Black Opium or Angel – you know someone who does!) – the list goes on, and on and on.
But among the undeniable defining scents of the decades, the recent ones of AKRO; from DARK (a rich and just sweet enough bite of chocolate), to HAZE (a sharp and earthy herbal and personal fave), and the latest INK, a unique and conceptual line that lives up to their inspirations and continues to keep us captivated.
Read on for our interview with Oliver and Anaïs Cresp below.
SIDEWALK HUSTLE: Is there one AKRO fragrance that is most each of you?
Olivier Cresp: HAZE fits with my actual mood, I like its freshness a lot, in spring time cannabis is everywhere in all cities.
Anais Cresp: INK matches my personality and it’s one of my favorites from the 7, the story of INK has special significance to me.
SH: You all have such different backgrounds in the world of fragrance – how have those affected the interpretation and creation of the AKRO fragrances?
OC: We are all very creative people, with many ideas and our different backgrounds generate many stories and situations that can be used to create a fragrance.
SH: Would all of you consider yourselves to have addictive tendencies & furthermore do all of you consider yourselves nostalgic? Is there one of you who is the most of both/either of these?
AC: I believe that some of the most powerful, evocative scents on earth come from our guilty pleasures. Aromas can conjure up memories, and a good perfume can transport us to another place. Somewhere more exciting, somewhere far away – in distance or in time. If we were to pick I am sure it would be me as the stories surrounding the fragrances come from my personal experiences during my time living in London.
OC: Everyone has a vice or daily little rituals, be it social media and using your phone, smoking, eating a specific type of food, or going to the gym at the end of the day and I am no different, I have to have my espresso after lunch and dark chocolate after dinner.
SH: The current fragrances all contain notes that are literal representations (ie. DARK – cocoa notes, AWAKE – Coffee notes) of their concept – are there any concepts that don’t necessarily have specific scents (I’m thinking something like – technology) that you’d like to explore?
OC: No. Because our style is figurative we can only explore figurative ideas. Abstract references like gambling is impossible to catch and different for everybody.
SH: Were there any fragrance ideas vetoed? Why?
AC: Nothing is off the table for Akro. We like to risk and surprise.
SH: AKRO’s fragrances are all about evoking specific times & spaces – could you ever see AKRO creating scents for spaces?
OC: Yes. Watch this space.
SH: Were there any fine fragrances you were addicted to (before AKRO)? Any other scents, non-fine fragrance you cannot get enough of? Anaïs – which of Olivier’s legendary scents is your fave?
OC: When I was a child I was addicted to Dior Eau Sauvage for its freshness and juiciness.
AC: Love the vitality of Juniper sling, Penhaligon’s.
SH: Re. the INK fragrance – do all of you have a first tattoo experience you drew on for this one? If so, and you feel like sharing – what was your first tattoo?
AC: The idea was to get something that I can look at and will make me remember. A sign that will transport me to another place, a memory. My first tattoo which I got done in London is the world map as I love to travel and it reminds me of all the places I have been to.
OC: I haven’t got a tattoo but after creating INK I have been contemplating it more and more – Anais keeps pushing me to get one.
SH: Do any of you have any tattoos for one another? Any for AKRO?
AC: My latest tattoo is the birth hours of my two babies – again, it reminds me of bringing them into the world, which was a massive part of my life.
Very special thanks to Oliver and Anais Cresp for speaking with us.
Anyone else TOO excited to experience an AKRO scented space? You are not alone! We will be watching! But for now, we’ll be enjoying INK, HAZE and all the current AKRO scents. We suggest you do too – pick them up and learn even more about them HERE.