Voluspa Japonica Aroma Room/Body Spray in Champaca Bloom & Fern

Voluspa Champaca Bloom & Fern Room Spray

The champaca tree (Michelia champaca) is native to India and Southeast Asia and it produces heavily scented flowers in profusion. When a large champaca tree is covered with flowers, whole neighborhoods can enjoy the blossoms’ strange, intoxicating (and naturally fruity-floral) scent — reminiscent of jasmine, quince, banana and magnolia (a relative of the champaca). Champaca trees are often planted on temple grounds and champaca blossoms are placed on Buddhist and Hindu altars as offerings. The scent of champaca can also be found in perfumes: Ormonde Jayne’s Champaca, Christian Dior’s J’Adore and Comme des Garçons’ Series 8: Guerrilla 1 all contain champaca.

Voluspa’s Japonica series of scented products got its packaging design inspiration from Japanese flower motifs (often seen on handmade papers and on textiles). The Japonica scented sprays come in six scents and are Eau de Parfum strength; they can be used as room sprays or to scent the body.

Champaca Bloom & Fern includes notes of champaca blossom, fern leaf, muguet and gardenia, and when I first smelled it, it brought to mind French perfumes of the 1940s/1950s era — dare I mention the names “Dior” and “Balmain” when writing about an $18 aroma spray?

The scent of Champaca Bloom & Fern reminds me of the smell of greenhouses — a damp, mossy and earthy aroma mixed with the perfumes of blossoming tropical plants. Champaca Bloom & Fern opens with a vibrant aroma of crushed fern leaves and moist, fragrant loam, mixed with the complex scent of champaca flowers. (The creamy notes of muguet and gardenia are more apparent when the scent is put on skin.)

The lasting power of this scent on skin and in the air is very good, comparable to Diptyque’s room sprays. I would classify Champaca Bloom & Fern as feminine when worn on skin, but when sprayed into the air, the scent’s notes of fresh fern, damp earth and feisty champaca blossoms make it unisex.

Voluspa’s Japonica sprays come in 125 ml bottles for $18; other scents in the series are: Baltic Amber, Burmese Rosewood, Capri Fig Frangipani and French Cade & Lavender. The Japonica series includes candles and hand lotion and hand soap.

For buying information, see the listing for Voluspa under Perfume Houses.

Next weekend: a review of Santiago Huckleberry from the same line.

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FragranceNetParfums Raffy

7 Comments

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  1. Anonymous says:

    This sounds terrific, like spring in a bottle! I'm going to track a bottle down right away. I'm interested in the Champaca tree, too. I wonder if it would survive in the Pacific NW? Sounds like a long shot.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Angela: give global warming a few more years and we'll be able to grow lots more things in the NW. You CAN grown a small champaca tree up here in a greenhouse. I have had two orange trees, a kumquat and a lime tree do fine inside my house in winter…just give them a coolish sunny room…and let them “live” outside in summer. K

  3. Anonymous says:

    Champaca, Dior, Balmain? And $18? Is this cosmic compensation for my years of substantial financial offerings to the perfume gods? Am going out to pick up this reward tomorrow w/out fail.
    But I'm also in awe of all those trees you've had inside your house in the winter! Unless I moved DH's piano out of the house, I'm not sure I could make that work (the sunniest room is his piano room, but it wouldn't have enough room as it is). However, let's just say that DH's piano won't be allowed to go. Ever.
    And I hesitate to ask, but…has he returned?

  4. Anonymous says:

    Elle: All those trees not only bloomed inside but had fruit on them…the kumquats were delicious. My pride and joy was a Buddha's Hand citrus. (I must admit all these trees were cared for by my partner…but I DID request, a la Louis V, the trees be “present”…surely I get credit for that?) I was thinking of you this week as I swerved off the road when I saw a mallard duck mourning his run-over mate…smack dab in the road amidst traffic. I parked illegally, raced to the spot to move the body and make the living mallard go away to a safer spot. After I trudged thru mud, cars and bicyclists, I reached the mournful scene to find the damned mallard lady laying down and MUNCHING ON GRASS CLIPPINGS…in the busy street. Both ducks “screamed” at me and walked away — thankfully not into traffic. Ducks are either the dumbest animal ever or are so full of hormones this time of year they don't fear anything.) My robin has not returned…and now it is too late to expect him. Other birds are nesting here…but of a different type: jays and flickers — gregarious, but in a bad way! I know they curse us in bird-speak for daring to walk in the yard near their nests. Good luck to your heron this season, K

  5. Anonymous says:

    Absolutely cracking up over your rescue of the less than grateful mallards. But even if they kvetched, I'm very impressed you went to their rescue. Great karma. I think I heard somewhere that mallards have an unusually high sex drive for birds – maybe that explains the lack of survival instinct there. :-) Around here it's the squirrels right now which are causing me to come close to wrecking my car on a regular basis.

    Have only seen Buddha's Hand citrus actually growing in Pakistan. Extremely cool that you have had one – I know the fruit is the main attraction, but I remember the flowers having a lovely scent as well.

    Taking a quiet moment here for your robin.

  6. Anonymous says:

    I could almost pass out. That description sounds . . . holy. Champaca, fern, earth? Must. Have.

  7. Anonymous says:

    I hope you enjoy it, K

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