|Cast Out of the Garden|
JoAnne Bassett's Amazing in EdP, is put together around one of my favorite notes, oakmoss, which has been deleted from commercial perfumes for some time now. It's been a great loss to the integrity and beauty of the genre of chypres and therefore many classics. Still, it's confusing because there is conflicting information about it, some say it can cause irritation in some individuals and some say it soothes irritations because it is antiseptic. The tree resins it contains cause the reactivity, when it occurs. I happen to have some oakmoss essential oil myself, and find it has beauty and complexity enough to stand on its own. It does many good things in perfume composition, and one of them is the green, live, dark earth scent it fixes to the other materials beside it. It is listed first in the notes of this perfume, implying that it is the predominant ingredient.
Check the site for samples and more information.
on her site. Mata Hari famously gave men no choice, their will was a burden they set down before her. One of the main qualities of this type of fascination is a hypnotic level of focus and concentration. The kind of focus is felt with how this perfume is immediately striking and holds together tightly for all the complexity of so many notes. Many were used to make the accords for "fantasy" notes of lilac, orchid and leather. It has that vintage yet moderne quality of the times, interpreting the 1910s via the 1930s; both eras of serious elegance.
Here's the list from the perfumer's site, as an exercise in full labeling and information for those who are afraid of these outlaw fragrances: bergamot, lemon, neroli, orange blossom absolute, mandarin, tarragon, sweet & blood orange, davana, tagettes, galbanum, carrot seed, black pepper, cassie flower absolute, mimosa absolute, jonquil absolute, orris butter, rose de mai absolute, damascena rose otto, sambac jasmine absolute, tuberose absolute, ylang ylang, champaca absolute, osmanthus absolute, nutmeg, cinnamon leaf, cinnamon bark, clove bud, honey absolute, angelica root absolute, ambrette seed co2, benzoin, cistus, costus root, oakmoss absolute, peru balsam, australian sandalwood, styrax absolute, tonka bean absolute, vanilla absolute, cumin, patchouli, java vetiver, buddahwood, texas cedarwood, cassis absolute, myrrh gum, tabac absolute, and cade.
Mata Hari will be available on the DSH site as a very limited edition of ten beautifully curvy flacons and 35 minis, signed and numbered by Dawn Spencer Hurwitz.
Anya's Garden is the organizer of this Outlaw perfumes concept, which I think is brilliant because of her own and the other perfumers' intimate and long relationship to their materials. She does indeed garden and often uses the materials she gathers there, while closely studying perfume materials from all over the world. She has worked with natural aroma materials for many years. I can't even imagine how it must be to have some kind of authority figure appear and make pronouncements that have the potential to limit your access to the elements of your art form and recommend that you change the way you work. On a fundamental level this is a restriction of natural perfumer's sources of inspiration. This project demonstrates what we all would be giving up if IFRA restrictions or prohibitions were to hinder independent perfumers. As discussed in my last post below, labeling and full information to the consumer from responsible perfumers could provide tailored protection as may be required. In any case, the independent natural perfumers are making their fragrances by hand in small fresh quantities that are not likely to end up in the hands of people unaware of what has gone into the perfume.
Base notes: Indonesian patchouli, Himalayan amber oil, Turkish styrax, Greek labdanum, Peruvian tonka bean, Salvadorean balsam tolu, Balsam of Peru, Chinese benzoin, Madagascan vanilla.
Please visit the other sites for further takes on these and the rest of the perfumes in the Outlaw project:
Gaia at The Non Blonde, Donna at the Examiner.com, Felicia at Fragrance Belles Lettres, Carol at Waft by Carol, Ida, Mark and Monica at Ca Fleure Bon, me of course, here at Indieperfumes, Beth at Perfume Smellin Things and Pat at Olfactarama
Above, detail from Fra Angelico's Annunciation, the expulsion from the Garden of Eden is depicted in the background, two details from the Pre-Raphaelite painters Rosetti and Millais, of their woodland backgrounds, Ophelia and La Belle Dame Sans Merci, publicity photo Greta Garbo as Mata Hari, and the perfume flacon from the DSH site linked above, rose photo from Anya's Garden site, linked above.