Walimah is one of several brand-new, upcoming fragrances from Areej Le Doré and is intended to be a celebration of love and marriage. It was created by Russian Adam in tribute to “the beautiful union of two souls from different corners of the globe” and their wedding late last year, so it’s quite symbolic that the fragrance’s two versions — a parfum and an attar — act as yin and yang. Although they have the same notes and formula, they are surprisingly different on my skin: the spray is feminine, ethereally bridal and, later, sensuously creamy); the attar casts dark, masculine shadows upon its luminous, radiant, white florals, sometimes shrouding them almost entirely. The attar is not only more complex but it is also a shape-shifter. In addition, it is unisex-to-masculine in its character, veering between co-equal unisex elements and an elegantly rugged masculinity that has an occasional animalic growl. I’ve been told that the spray version will eventually age into something closer in scent and character to the attar but, even as they are right now, both versions are striking in their own way.
Today, I wanted to take you into the world of Japanese niche perfumery. Parfum Satori is a brand that has been around since 2000, but it only recently arrived in America and Europe.
Parfum Satori was founded by Satori Osawa, and she is also the nose behind the fragrances. According to her profile on the brand’s website, she is a member of La Société Française de la Parfumerie, and has a background in scent going back to 1988. Her goal is to make fragrances that are representative of Japanese culture, and thereby “oriental” in a very different sense of the word than it is typically used. Fragrantica lists 19 fragrances for the brand. I’ve only tried four, all eau de parfums in the Premium Black and White Collections: the eponymous Satori, Hana Hiraku, Iris Homme, and Wasabon. I’ll take a look at each one in turn.
Vert Boheme is one of four new Tom Ford fragrances called Les Extraits Verts which were released in September as part of the Private Blend Collection. Vert Boheme is a clean, fresh, green and feminine (not unisex) floral eau de parfum that follows a classical 1970s style. It reminded me a lot of a mix of YSL‘s vintage Rive Gauche, Diorissimo, and Chanel‘s Cristalle, given a modern touch through a heavy dose of clean musk. Having said that, I have major issues with its development, structure, and quality, and I don’t find it to be particularly distinctive. Be that as it may, I think Vert Boheme will be a very popular fragrance with women who like extremely fresh, clean, crisp, green florals as well as the vintage style of perfumery.
On his website, Tom Ford describes Vert Boheme as follows:
Sparkling and infallible like a jewel gleaming in the Sun, Private Blend Vert Bohéme is TOM FORD’s interpretation of green at its most free-spirited. Sicilian, Mandarin and Magnolia exude Bohemian femininity, exquisitely enhanced with gustavia, also known as “The Tree of Heaven”, known for its spectacular single blossoms that last for just one day. The fresh vibrancy awakens a divine first bloom, crystal-clear and exposed.
Close your eyes and imagine palatial, perfectly manicured, green gardens, perhaps in Verona’s Giusti Gardens or Rome’s Villa d’Este. An endless vista of green is covered by a powerful but translucent web of embroidered lace made from fresh white petals. Magnolia flowers drip a milky juice that smells like figs. Orange blossom buds have just started to unfurl and waft a delicate scent that is as green as the tuberose and jasmine that encircle the garden like tall statues. Ylang-ylang hovers in the shadows, while creamy white trees stand as sentries in the distance, shedding benzoin and a wisp of delicate, warm powder like their equivalent of pollen. The wind blows little puffs of vanilla over the gardens, but this is not a tale of sweetness. It is a rhapsody of spring, celebrating the marriage of the freshest white flowers with greenness, as a choir of soft woods surrounds them to sing their praises. It is the tale of Lace Garden from Téo Cabanel.
I should disclose at the start that I have a huge soft spot for Téo Cabanel Parfums. Their scents are always solid and high quality for a really reasonable price. I admire that they work hard at putting out the best scents they can, one a year, instead of a deluge every few months. They aren’t driven by greed or commercialism, don’t put out flashy campaigns, or don’t try to be provocative for the sake of appearing “edgy.” Instead, they seem to care only about the actual scent and its quality. Plus, they’re so hugely under-appreciated that they seem like an underdog in the perfume world, which always brings out my protective side. All of this is separate from the fact that this small, relatively unknown perfume house makes one of my favorite modern fragrances (Alahine). When you add in the house’s fascinating history — complete with the notorious style icon, the Duchess of Windsor, as its most ardent fan — and the fact that I’m a history fanatic, then Teo Cabanel becomes a brand that I always root for.