One Thousand Scents

Friday, February 12, 2010


Over on my other blog I posted about some typos on the Ormonde Jayne website, but I'm guessing that doesn't interest you all that much, since you would much rather hear about Ormonde Jayne. I've reviewed only one of their scents, but I loved it, and I figured (after mentioning their sample program in that posting) that it was high time I tried the rest of them.

I haven't, yet, because my box of samples arrived today, which means I didn't get it until after work, and since Jim has his weekends off, I won't be able to start spritzing myself until later in the week. And I will. Oh, will I! But until then, I want to talk about the packaging, which is ridiculously gorgeous.

Black and gold, of course, the standard way to express quiet elegance in the perfumery world (and I guess the fashion world in general). The box has a matte finish, but over on the right-hand side--you can sort of see it in the picture--is a glossy blob that resolves itself into a Rococo chandelier, or part of one. When you pull out the drawer that contains the samples, you see that the equally matte gold lid has another glossy blob, and that the two together form the entire chandelier. It is a little surprise, and very lovely.

Another charming surprise: when you pull out the drawer containing the samples, the other drawer holding the leaflet also automatically slides out from the other side. I felt very Homer Simpson ("Bed goes up, bed goes down....") as I kept sliding the little drawers in and out in a pixillated manner.

The samples are eleven two-millilitre glass spray vials, representing the entire line except the newest, Tiare. There's a big collection to choose from: The signature Ormonde Woman and Ormonde Man, two more men's scents (Isfarkand and Zizan), three floral orientals, and four soliflores. Just sniffing the array of vials is a heady experience: the overall smell is rich and lush, heady with Orientalia: it makes you want to dive in.

I suppose I need to emphasize that they are not paying me to say this (they should, but they didn't offer), but what we have here is something very lovely and desirable, and you might want to consider ordering the set for yourself: it's £35, very reasonable, I think, and shipping is free anywhere in the world. Naturally, you will want to read some reviews of the scents firsts (or wait for mine)--if you don't think you'll like even half of them, then it's probably not a good investment. But I'm always willing to throw a few bucks at some samples, because these days (with the obvious exception of my beloved object of obsession, the Serge Lutens collection) I'd rather have a dozen samples of things that I get to play with and discover than a full bottle of something I know I'll never see the bottom of.


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