While waiting for all of my fragrant impressions of Pitti Fragranze 2019 to macerate properly in order to choose perfumes which I’ll review in more detail, I decided to give you a short overview of a few newly launched and some already known rose-themed perfumes which were exhibited, right after writing about The Man Who Stole The Show, Jean Claude Ellena – here – Rose&Cuir included.
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…
I made a mistake. I read reviews, discussions, pros and cons, meaningless video acclamations or words of disagreement. That’s why I avoided sampling it until now: Jungle Jezebel from Artist Edition Collection, by Sarah Baker Perfumes, created by Miguel Matos, renown writer for Fragrantica, and a perfumer.
When a visual artist teams up with the “bad boy” of perfumery, there are some boundaries to be pushed!
I write about perfumes. I am a collector of olfactory impressions. Sometimes I fall head over heels in love with a perfume. As I did with Dangerous Rose. Unexpectedly, utterly and irrevocably. With an insatiable hunger for it.
To start with, I was just as self-confident that it will not affect me so strongly when I first approached it.
An introduction was made, perhaps that is why I felt so self-confident. Two introductions, to be exact.
The first one happened at the Esxence – The Scent of Excellence exhibition in Milan, where I attended Olibere Perfumes presentation of the new collection, resulting from the cooperation between Founder Marjorie Olibere and star perfumer Luca Maffei of Atelier Fragranze Milano.
These fine perfumes are inspired by movies Marjorie watched when growing up: Dangerous Rose perfume is inspired by the movie „Dracula“. Vampire movies of our youth. My favorite is “Interview With A Vampire”!
Movies, memories, atmosphere, characters, plots…and fragrances.
There are three new Extraits de Parfum joining Savannah’s Heart: Chemical Love, Leather Attraction and Dangerous Rose.
„OLIBERE is a fragrance atelier that makes for the first time the unique connection between the magic of cinema & poetry of fragrances. Each fragrance comes with its original short movie. Founder Marjorie Olibere makes sure that each fragrance and movie powerfully convey emotions.“
I had the pleasure of hearing Marjorie Olibere present the new collection together with Luca Maffei, showing us raw materials he used!
The second introduction, much closer to the skin, was made when I came home, watched some vampire movies again, tested and wore the perfume over and over again. I became selfish, keeping it for myself. So much that I refused to write about it until now, still sniffing my wrist like an addict.
I thought at first: a Chypre! To be honest, this is what some Chypre perfumes do to me. Now, those who are familiar with perfume families might as well skip this paragraph but in order not to flaunt around “big ‘fume” words for those who are not, let’s start with this brief explanation:
„Chypre“ is mostly acknowledged as the most sophisticated of fragrance families. The name comes from Cyprus (French) – the island, not the cypress tree. There are opinions that Chypre (sheep:raa) date back to Roman times: this island is considered the birthplace of Aphrodite, the goddess of love. These fragrances are usually built around a woody/mossy accord – with bergamot, oakmoss, patchouli and labandum and elements of flowers, fruits or wood are also present, dividing this family into two groups: Chypre Floral and Chypre Fruity, and furthermore Woody Chyphre, Fresh Cyphre, Green Cyphre and Cyphre Leather. Francois Coty launched in 1917. his simply named „Cyphre“ perfume, Guerlain did it with Cyphre de Paris, also simply named Cyphre.
I am very fond of the Cyphre family: to me, these perfumes bring a very feminine and sophisticated feeling, complex and rare and ah! so very Parisienne! The mood. The atmosphere. Luxury. High heels, perfect makeup, shiny hair, and heavenly scented body. They are a fine dress, a glass of champagne, red lipstick, soft lights, Mona Lisa smiles, refined seduction, elegant sex appeal, and sparkling intellect…
Call it a Cyphre, a woody-floral-musk, a nouveau cyphre: this Dangerous Rose is a Dangerous Rose is a Dangerous Rose…by whatever family name you call it!
What is the connection between movies about vampires and this finely crafted Cyphre perfume? The atmosphere! Haunting. I remember watching vampire movies breathlessly, movies about love, seduction, betrayal, loneliness, and hunger for life.
These movies whisper and scream about addiction, the pain of separation, the fading of feelings, the promise of immortality. Haunting, sexy, funny and hypnotic.
The perfume? Both gourmand and carnal, it opens up inviting, seducing you in an almost innocent offering of fresh bergamot, edible spices, and fruitiness – only to transform into dark rose absolute enhanced with oud. Gothic splendor, leaving you totally bewitched with the elegant darkness of its sensuality.
There is also the fact that in the 16th/17th century Europe oakmoss was a very popular scent, used with orris and rose petals to perfume the wigs! Vampires in movies? They are not just creatures of the dark: they are emotional, contemplative, hedonistic, confident and frail in their immortality. Highly seductive.
„In the spring of 1988. I returned to New Orleans and as soon as I smelled the air I knew I was home. It was rich, almost sweet, like the scent of jasmine and roses around our old courtyard. I walked the streets, savouring that long lost perfume“
I really would like you to feel the atmosphere I keep talking about because, in my opinion, it is crucial in describing this perfume:
„Mortal beauty often makes me ache and mortal grandeur can fill me with that longing…but Paris, Paris drew me close to her heart, so I forgot myself entirely. Forgot the damned and questioning preternatural thing that doted on mortal skin and mortal clothing. Paris overwhelmed and lightened and rewarded more richly than any promise“
Dangerous Rose starts out sweet, singing its notes softly, almost like when you listen to choral chanting. A fruity intro with a sprinkle of spices lures you to come closer, to lower your shields and forget your defenses. Very tempting and irresistible. As you become relaxed with this song-of-a-siren top notes nectar conjunction, the dark red, opulent, rose in full bloom rose enters like a queen. A tricky rose it is too, playing with your senses: it moves in majestically but it also hides in so many shadows of oud and civet, not taking over but rather making a perfect setting so that this rose can be appreciated in all its might. Imagine this rose, as I did, closing my eyes: a rose observed by night. Dark, deep red tones with black shadows in deep folds of thick petals, soft and velvety but also very full-bodied petals, almost edible in their opulence. When you fully surrender to it, it leaves a deep impression of muskiness that lingers on, like a silky bed for all those wonderful rose petals! Dangerous Rose seems to last forever in its almost eerie beauty…
„As if the night said to me: „You are the night and the night alone understands you and unfolds you in its arms.“ One with the shadows. Without a nightmare. An inexplicable peace“ (Anne Rice)
I hope you will enjoy this fine perfume as much as I did!
Top notes: Bergamot, Passion Fruit, Nutmeg, Pink Pepper, Cardamom
Middle notes: Rose Absolute, Pyrogenated Styrax, Oud
Base notes: Patchouli, Benzoin, Labdanum, Civette, Oakmoss, Musk
After the crowdfunding campaign, the first bottles were shipped. My bottle arrived: it is beautiful!
Elena Cvjetkovic/The Plum Girl
Quotes: Anne Rice, “The Vampire Chronicles”
Sheiduna. Sheitan’s bride? A she-dune? Seduction? Is that how they named you, I asked the perfume. Why?
It is all of this and more, yet with utmost elegance.
Here it was, right under my nose, the new perfume Sheiduna by Puredistance – Master Perfumes. An intriguing one, packed in an elegant bottle, smooth and heavy in my hand, with wow-baam! perfume percentage – where will it take me, I wondered. The niche house of Puredistance always seemed promising to me (feel free to click and learn more).
Press materials provided by Puredistance describe this novelty (created by CécileZarokian, ISIPCA graduate, she was trained for four years in Robertet, at first in Grasse, then in Paris. She was still a trainee when she created her first fragrance, Amouage Epic Woman. The name is invented by Jan Ewoud Vos, Puredistance founder), like this:
“SHEIDUNA is a rich and intense Perfume inspired by the panoramic views and feel of golden sand dunes in the desert during sunset – soft, female curves changing from deep gold to warm, orangey-red – embodying a promise of sensual comfort and silent seduction. Wearing SHEIDUNA, one waft’s sensuality and intense color waves of Persian rugs touch the senses. The perfect marriage between Sensuality and Style.
Ingredients: lemon, tangerine, blackcurrant, aldehydes, Bulgarian rose essence, geranium, clove, vetyver, patchouly, amber woody, incense, benzoin, myrrh, tonka bean, vanilla pods, and musks.”
There you are, ingredients and all: yet, beware. This perfume doesn’t have the classical pyramid structure, nor will you be able to sum it up at once. You might love it or hate it, or hate it at first and then realize a couple of hours later that you want it as your signature perfume. It’s tricky, it’s strong and it’s pricey.
You’ve got to meet her in silence. She might seem orientally mystic but cold and distant, yet you can sense there is so much more under that self-contained first impression. When I took the second breath images and scents swirled around my head, extracting bits and pieces connected to my olfactory memories…desert! I wondered which one was it…was it Israel? No. Sahara? Not this time, but close enough. Suddenly I was again in the dusty bus, on my way to the Valley of Kings, taking a right turn, passing the path made of ancient stones and climbing the stairs of the magnificent temple of Hatshepsut.
My first impression of Sheiduna was oops, there we go powerful oriental again. Nah. But then came tangerines (I must have summoned them in the previous post “Tangerine Trees and Marmelade Skies) and lemon, gently unveiling Bulgarian rose. Subtle, seductive rose. It lasts and it lasts, leaving me with soft amber, near skin seductive fragrance. Soft as desert sands in the late afternoon, where all the scents of this world are gone and you can actually smell the sunbathed sand, the rocks, the sky, the Sun, your own skin and wind. I don’t know why but I thought this is how she might have smelled, the woman who became the King.
The story about Hatshepsut is fascinating. What is also fascinating is that the ancient Egyptians were adept at chemistry, their formulas are the basis for the production of modern perfumes and cosmetics. Experts from L’Oreal and the Center for Research of the Museums of France tested materials from ancient perfume bottles and jars kept in Louvre: the percentages of ingredients used are roughly the same used in eye makeup today. And perfumes? They were masters of the art.
Born in the 15th century BC, Hatshepsut, daughter of Tuthmose I and Aahmes, was the favorite of their three children. When her two brothers died, she was in a unique position to gain the throne upon the death of her father. To have a female pharaoh was unprecedented, and probably most definitely unheard of as well. She did not become a queen. She was crowned the King of all Egypt, pharaoh, wore male clothes and a beard and accomplished what no woman had before her. She ruled the most powerful, advanced civilization in the world for twenty years. Bringing peace and prosperity, trading with, among other things – myrrh…which you can find in this perfume. When she died, her successors tried to eradicate every trace of her, including the most sacred form of her very presence on this world and the one to come – her name carved into stones of temples, amid names of other pharaohs. Her temple stands up to this day, she looks upon you as you enter it, and she lives. Her name is not forgotten.
I can imagine her watching down those stairs of Djeser-Djeseru, wearing her perfume scented robes, waiting for the sun to set behind the orange-colored horizon. Eager to retreat to her chambers, to be – just a woman. A seductive, noble and classy queen, sophisticated and elegant – hot and cold, sensual and down to earth – you might love her or hate her but she rules her world. Thanks, Sheiduna. Where will it take you?
The Plum Girl
Photo: The Plum Girl
Testing Location: Parfumerija Lana