I remember now.
Perfume is an art. It creates pictures. It tells stories and stirs memories and emotions. Or, at least, it should.
Big corporations, focus groups, politics, marketing and mass marketing and most of all IFRA regulations have almost taken it away from us and made us forget what it feels like to wear real perfume. But now, wearing Gypsy by perfumer Charna Ethier, I remember. And I don't want to let go.
Technically speaking, Gypsy is a dark amber with a touch of green fougere. If I were an abstract painter trying to capture Gypsy I'd paint my canvas black-based brown, maroon and brick red, let the colors bleed into each other and then incorporate some forest green veins. But Gypsy is only abstract if I let it be. It's a warm, breathing thing, human and personal and makes me think of the way other countries seemed to me as a child.
I go back to times before I had a clear map of the world in my head and was only discovering the wonder of foreign languages- people speaking in magical tones. My parents had guests from different corners of the world- long lost relatives and old friends coming from as far as South Africa and East Europe. They stayed up late, drank mysterious and strong smelling liqueurs that had beautiful labels on their dark bottles, wore strong perfumes and brought gifts that smelled of mystery.
Gypsy has all that and more. I consider it wearable by both men and women, though my husband's chemistry brings out something a little too sharp, while on me it's as soft and luxurious as I could have ever hoped. According to Charna Ethier "Most of the botanicals used in comprising Gypsy Eau de Parfum are posted on IFRA's list of banned/restricted ingredients". The main notes are-
Top: galangal, lavender, lemon, petitgrain, and cardamom.
Heart: pink lotus absolute, Bulgarian lavender and green violet leaf.
Base: tonka, oakmoss, vetiver, patchouli, costus, and vanilla
But it's all about the blend- spicy, sensual, dark and sweet. It feels romantic and mysterious. It's incredibly long-lasting (easily more than 12 hours). A full bottle is now on my ever-growing wish list, a sentiment that seems to be shared by Ida from Ca Fleur Bon.
Gypsy is part of the Outlaw Perfume Project. The sample was provided by Providence Perfume Co. (providenceperfume.com).
Today's question: What was the last perfume that made you feel a strong emotion? When was that?
Art: Gitana II by Fabian Perez