The first thing Johanna Venables, founder and perfumer of NOT Perfumes, tells you about her creations is a warning. When you do NOT, keep in mind that:
“The Extracts are very concentrated and forbidden to wear on the skin due to the inclusion of possibly dangerous or irritating materials. Instead, it’s suggested they are used on a handkerchief, in a pomander or an aroma locket.
Some customers are tempted to wear them on the skin and report doing so, but they are very naughty people and do it entirely at their own risk.”
I set out to explore an artisan perfume brand – Hendley Perfumes, starting with a discovery kit with samples of Amora (2016), Blond (2018), Bourbon (2015), Fume (2015), Mown (2017), Narcis (2019 Laboratory Series release), Untitled (2019), Bloodline (created for American Perfumer in 2019, limited edition, sold out), and a 9ml travel spray of Rosenthal (2015). Little did I know how smitten they all shall leave me…
This happens often. I pull out a perfumes sample pack, start testing one by one, taking notes for “drafts&quick sniffs“, and usually the one from which I expect the most, or the one I’m uncertain of mentioning at all -is the last one to be worn and tested extensively on my skin.
It’s like when you’re on a roller coaster ride. You know that moment where you go quickly over a peak in the ride, and you feel that weird sensation in your stomach? Then you plunge. At that moment, you’re weightless, free of anything pushing or pulling you, it’s exciting and challenging at the same time.
Eyes closed, I dream about traveling to places near and distant, familiar ones greeting me with a smile, unknown ones calling my name.
You are surely familiar with that feeling when somebody just mentions a song (or says just one word), and you instantly hear this song in your head, playing on repeat, sticking around for hours, if not days while you catch yourself humming it?