While we hate to feed into the fetishization of raw materials, it’s impossible to deny that the scent of orris root is one of perfumery’s most fascinating. Harvested from the roots of iris flowers (Iris Pallida to be exact) after they’ve grown for three years, with a further three years required for the roots to dry, orris root is one of perfumery’s most expensive ingredients with prices ranging from from €12,000 to €50,000 per kilo.
Orris based fragrances are so compelling because orris is such a shapeshifter. It can give the impression of everything from silvery ghost carrots to Ancien Regime powdered luxury, and it’s used in perfumery from everything to the most romantic violet bouquets to creamy sandalwoods.
Bukhara is an intelligent spin on orris because it bridges two parallels. Its initial sprays play into orris root’s earthy richness and vegetable undertones; however, as the scent develops it takes on a misty, silken quality. And while Bukhara is an unmistakable orris fragrance, there’s a host of background players exaggerating the lines and keeping interest.
Composed by Ralf Schwieger, one of the industry’s most intelligent noses. Schwieger has a really interesting body of work. He's made blockbuster hits such as Lipstick Rose for Frederic Malle, Hermes’s Eau des Merveilles and Womanity for Thierry Mugler. But he's also made underground, cult hits with independent brands like Charenton Macerations.
Bukhara is a Finalist for the Fragrance Foundation's 2021 Award for Perfume Extraordinaire.
Captured by Candlelight hits at just the right side of appetising.
Balance and restraint are the key to making any perfume with gourmand elements work. The last thing anyone wants to smell like is a cupcake. Well, maybe some people do. No judgement. (We’re totally judging).
Captured by Candlelight is a perfume inspired by perfumer (and writer) Sarah McCartney’s story of the same name. There’s a scene in the story where a huge, flaming Christmas pudding is being wheeled into a candlelit, oak-panelled dining room. She’s told that part of the story with smells.
We love its considered construction of notes - the gummy, stewed fruits, flaming treacle, oak panels and freshly extinguished candles. You really smell the story when you wear it.
A fiery blend of spices and animalic notes. Inspired by composer Gustav Mahler.
Black Pepper Madagascar, Oud, Civet, Jasmine Absolute, Myrrh
Perfumer: Yann Vasnier
250g / 8.5oz candle with 60 hour burn time.
A fragrant mash-up of the ancient and modern. Istanbul tips its hat to the big ambery perfumes of the early 20th century, but revamps them to fit into a 21st century modern lifestyle. Warm, viscous resins in a gentle whirl of lighthearted aromatics. Your jumper’s going to smell so good.