I’ve been distracted this week with the repair work going on at the studio and the week sped by all too quickly. I’m just now getting back to the new scents, though we still have a few more days of painting to go. Cameo and Tobacco Amber testers are starting to go out. I’m playing with the sandalwood and musk levels in Cameo to assess staying power. On the tabac, I’m trying it without one ionone and with one woodsy ingredient from the original that I’d removed but may include after all.
I’ll also be starting the reformulation of Fireside Intense this weekend; I just wrote the formula that I’ll try first with the new moss. After that I’ll do the reformulation for Encens Tranquille.
I need to get back to gardenia. In his paper “Fragrance Creation: Gardenia in Perfumery” in Perfumer and Flavorist Vol 33 April 2008, Arcadi Boix Camps states, “Gardenia comprises one of the most complicated chemical structures I have studied — by far more complicated than magnolia or frangipani.” He goes on to discuss his efforts over the years to develop several gardenia bases. He says, “I do not believe there is a single chemical smelling of gardenia or magnolia in the way there are chemicals that smell of jasmine. To use gardenia is to reproduce the flower with the technology and art as I have tried to do.” In addition to there being no single aroma chemical that smells of gardenia, there has been no natural extract product of gardenia, so perfumers have developed their own interpretations of the flower.
One of the challenges with any floral accord for perfume is that the real flower is a little fragrance factory that can keep pumping out the most volatile chemicals, whereas in perfume those most volatile items dissipate quickly and can’t be replaced (unless you spritz again). Sometimes some of those fleeting topnotes are quite important to the scent of the flower and the perfumer has to figure out how else to give the floral impression after those topnotes fade. Often there’s nothing quite like nature, but perfumers can put different twists on the flower to create something that’s not an exact match to nature but beautiful in its own way.