Dawn Spencer Hurwitz Fleuriste ~ fragrance review

green carnation circles

Independent perfumer Dawn Spencer Hurwitz recently announced the launch of Fleuriste,* a carnation-centered “modern floral with just a few nods to the classical style.” Regular readers at Now Smell This very likely know that I have a special fondness for rose fragrances, but I love other florals, too — violet, iris, and yes, carnation. Therefore I was naturally interested in Fleuriste, which includes notes of rose leaves, carnation, neroli, jasmine, rose and ambergris.

Fleuriste begins with a breath of chilled air and crisp greenery, as though you had just opened the door of the refrigerated display case in a florist’s shop. There’s a hint of moisture that lasts for a while, as though the flowers were misted with cool water…

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Gabriella Chieffo Acquasala & Camaheu ~ fragrance reviews

Gabriella Chieffo Acquasala & Camaheu, brand images

I’ve been trying another new niche perfume line this week — Gabriella Chieffo, a collection that comes to us from Lecce, Italy (way down in the “heel” of the “boot”). Chieffo herself is “a mother and environmental engineer” who “makes her debut as a fragrance designer with the intent to recapture the colors and materials of her beloved land.” She also appears to be interested in weaving tales of feminine emotional experience into the fragrances. So far, I’ve tried two of them: Acquasala and Camaheu…

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Juliette Has A Gun Gentlewoman ~ fragrance review

Juliette Has A Gun Gentlewoman

French niche line Juliette Has A Gun recently launched Gentlewoman, a new fragrance inspired by traditional Eau de Cologne, “a masculine fragrance dedicated to women.” It features notes of neroli, orange blossom, almond, bergamot, petitgrain and musky woods, and the brand’s founder, Romano Ricci, has said, “With Gentlewoman, I wanted to give women a dash of dandy. Modern, daring, I envy her freedom, her taste, her look.”

This is a brand that has never quite “clicked” for me, and there’s a lot about this fragrance that doesn’t appeal to me at first glance: the image of a faux-surly teen model reprising the classic photos of Yves Saint Laurent’s “le smoking” suits, the thread-worn praise of the “modern” woman, the mix of citrus and gourmand notes. Weirdly, I ended up liking Gentlewoman…

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Lubin Grisette ~ perfume review

La Grisette

French niche line Lubin recently launched Grisette, a new feminine fragrance with notes of grapefruit, bergamot, rose, iris, incense, cedar, musk, amber and vanilla. Grisette was named for the French Belle Epoque term for young working-class women who took a bohemian approach to love. Lubin frequently makes historical and cultural references in its fragrances, and this one sounded right up my Montmartre alley.

Unfortunately (for me, at least), Grisette evokes the eighties — the 1980s, that is, not the 1880s…

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Diptyque Florabellio ~ fragrance review

Diptyque Florabellio brand image

In my own perfume collection, certain houses receive more attention during certain seasons of the year. Diptyque happens to be a summer favorite of mine: I’ve worn L’Ombre dans L’Eau every summer since 2003, and I’m also very fond of Eau Rose and Eau de Lierre. Diptyque’s latest release, Florabellio, puzzled me on paper, and I wasn’t able to guess how much I’d like it or what season it would best fit. Florabellio was developed by perfumer Fabrice Pellegrin and features notes of salty sea spray, sea fennel, apple blossom, osmanthus, coffee and toasted sesame.

My sample vial of Florabellio has turned out to be a very suitable fragrance for the earliest days of summer. Diptyque describes Florabellio as “foreign yet familiar…blurring the perspectives between land and sea, flower and fruit, softness and bitterness.” Most of that description makes perfect sense to me…

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