Graffiti my Soul: Boudicca strike, er, spray a blue note

Zowie Broach and Brian Kirkby of clandestine British cult brand Boudicca – named for the Iceni tribal queen – have announced a September launch of their very first fragrance, Wode. If early details are any indication, this avant-garde perfume will serve as an extension of the label’s artistic, if not commercial, pursuits. With built-in niche appeal already guaranteed, Wode is destined make a splash unlike any other we have seen since 2005’s Odeur 53 from Comme des Garçons, which notoriously eschewed traditional notes for an ultra-modern, metallic “bouquet”.

Boudicca named their iconoclastic fragrance after the ancient woad plant, whose blue dyes were used by tribes for ritualistic marking by the Brittani tribes. Fittingly, Wode’s ingenuity and novelty lies in its unusual mode of application, and as you may suspect, its color! Designed to mimic graffiti, the spicy Wode scent is sprayed from a can, tinting the wearer with a disturbingly inky blue paint. The splatter and shock factor, of course, is temporary. Wode’s visual aspect fades, so those of you envisioning blue stains on your clothing, fear not! You can watch a demonstration of this arty application process here, on Boudicca’s platform13 site. Judging from this provocative clip, Wode’s accompanying campaign looks to be as conceptually ambitious as the product itself.

Wode will enjoy a surreptitious launch in September (with the couture crowd to be given a preview), but reportedly you will not be able to buy it through the typical vendors!

Speculation on how Boudicca plan to market and distribute Wode continues, but its debut will no doubt see Boudicca defy expectations and ideals yet again. Speaking to Hint Magazine, Boudicca’s Kirkby confirmed that Wode “will not follow the conventional route of a fragrance. And anyway it would be a huge cliché for us to do a fragrance as we all know it’s a well-trodden path. We see it more as art.”

And until Martin Margiela releases his perfume in 2009, Kirkby should rest assured that Wode will dominate the fringe fragrance market.

— Colleen Nika

[Photographer: Justin Smith]