Custom designing perfumes is my greatest love...
the whole process of finding the perfect Scent to match a persons personality is a real delight...and probably the ultimate gift you can give yourself or a Loved One!
It is a pretty involved process, starting with a detailed questionnaire that gives me insight into your basic likes and dislikes, covering everything from colours, moods, conventional fragrances you have previously worn and a chapter on aromatherapy so your perfume can be tailored to your physical and emotional needs, as well as on a purely scentual basis.
It's a very interesting artisitic process...a combination of personality profileing, Healing and Perfumery all rolled into one!
As a perfumer, this is my greatest challenge and greatest delight! Seeing the look of happiness on a persons face when I've got it "just right" is such a pleasure....
I've found I can now often pick the scents that will suit a person simply on meeting them the first time. Natural essential oils and absolutes have personalities of their own, and it's a bit like being an olfactory marriage broker really....you just know which oils and which people will really hit it off together!
I'll often pick 2 or 3 central oils on which to base the scent which in themselves are perfectly suited to the person the scent is being crafted for....
From there the process is a matter of finding accessory notes which will bring out the best in both the chosen base aromatics and the person who will be wearing them.
Sometimes I will start with a particular accord...in this case the young man who the cologne is being designed for wanted something with a leather note similar to his italian leather jacket.
This is a wonderful old fashioned note in perfumery...very masculine and both sexy and comforting at the same time...and a fantastic base that can be varied in so many different ways...in this case we decided to go with a bright citrus note to give it a fresh twist and make it a good cologne to wear every day. He wanted something he could wear to the office that would make him feel good, as well as being an attrative scent to others around him, both men and women! This is a really important aspect to a custom perfume: You need to have an idea of who you want to wear it around....will it be at the office? or at a private intimate dinner? Or do you maybe want something seriously in your face sexy to wear to bed with a lover?
Perfume can be subtle and freindly...or it can be intenslely intimate! And you need to have an idea of the effect you want it to have on others as well as yourself...
The bottles on the left are a varity of versions of a custom designed cologne I've put together for the young man, who is coming to the workshop to try them out on his actual skin, and from there I can fine tweak them with various nuances and notes till we've got it exactly right!
What you can see here is a workbook with notes I've taken on the Scent as it's been developing, some of the ingre
dients I may use to give the working blends a final "tweak" and 6 sample bottles with variations of the actual scent I have made up for the client to try. In the background you can see the round glass bottle with one of our signature velvet leaves that will be used for the finished cologne.
And here he is smelling the effect on his skin. No matter what a scent is like in the bottle, there's no substitute for trying in on the actual skin of the person it is designed for. Your skin will change a scent and bring out different nuances...
In this case, the base needed to be fine tweaked and ramped up a little as the young mans skin brought out the citrus top notes very strongly.
He was delighted with the scent by the way! masculine, elegant, fresh and understated with a beautiful italian leather base that is really timeless.
You can almost see him back in Venice in the 1800's. A young Italian count going out for a nights revelry....
In the next installment, we'll give you some feedback on how those around him reacted to his new cologne!
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