creating scents

vetiver md and superglue on a bright Friday morning

The other day, I was looking into the formula of Rose de Kandahar (PHI) again. I think I wanted to know again how much musk is in there (this rose being the first of my scents where I actually use a classical musk molecule); so I checked the formula and rediscovered that I use Vetiver MD in there. This is a special quality of natural vetiver that I discovered when visiting the Salon des Matières Premières a while ago in Paris. It is a vetiver that is sort of deprived of much of the rooty earthiness, the dirt and brown aspects. How does it smell? A bit like “Vetiver extraordinaire”, hence a strong vetiverol note, green aspects, citrus. And: It lasts for ever. And: It is a perfect fixation ingredient. Great glue. And you can use it without getting this overtoning dirty earth note that might not fit with your ideas and the delicate background notes. Yet, it is more natural, richer, less boring than vetiverol, that smells like… well: like a couple of vetiver fragrances out there.

Yes, unfortunately: Most perfume lovers would fear that their noses fall off when smelling the real thing. Especially the Java quality of vetiver. Amazing stuff. A dark, almost black oil. Rotten. Not washed. Fur. Timber. Public restroom in Mumbai. Wet leather gloves inside a summer house in August. It smells like the dark version of a old worn out leather jacket, that collected the fumes of the Paris Métro, a  dog peeing over a dead geranium plant sitting in rotten wet earth, and a few other things that make it so interesting. But for sure not an easy ingredient.

Nothing of that in rose de Kandahar, but vetiver MD. And a couple of other fixation molecules and naturals. They do not only fix, of course, but are part of the story that I tell with PHI. Tobacco, patchouli, amber gris, vanilla, tonka, et al.  And a super glue: The magic of okoumal. Here’s what Givaudan says about it …superglue!

Today’s picture shows you a detail from my bench. There, next to the keyboard, I have all the trial vials (30 ml brown flint glass)  that I am working on or that I test these days. In most of them, you find a bit of superglue. It is just magic. You can call these flacons the pipeline. The pipeline is actually too full and the space on my desk is limited.

Anyhow: PHI-une de Kandahar is here again. In Europe, it is in the stores already (many of them). In the US, it will be in the stores shortly. We will all start selling Nov. 25 there. I am very happy that it is finally there.

But when we will be out of it one fine day (again)  and when it will be all gone, then I will be happy, too.

A lot of work: Bottles, packing and answering mails…. like “why we do not ship”. So here’s the ultimate last sentence of this post: Yes, we do not ship to most places in Europe; due to shipment restrictions for perfumes, enforced strictly here in Switzerland, and no, we cannot make an exception, not even for you. And yes, rose de kandahar is limited, and no, we will not make a special version of it, not even for you;

Oh, you are a rich oil princess? never mind. not even for you.