Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Penhaligon's- Sartorial

I bought the Blond a bottle of Penhaligon's Sartorial a couple of years ago. I got it for him as a surprise little pick-me-up before an important business meeting, since he already tested it once and I remembered it smelled like a million dollars on him.  There's something irresistible and charming in a very classic-seeming men's fougere on all its violet leaf and lavender galore. It's even more attractive once you begin to pay attention and realize that the fragrance has an incredible depth beyond the clean and green first impression. I figured it was just what the husband needed on  that occasion.

Then I started borrowing the bottle here and there. Men's cologne? Whatever. What Bertrand Duchaufour created for Penhaligon's here is an elegant and layered modern floral animalic fragrance. Sartorial was inspired by the bespoke tailors of Savile Row, their backrooms where heavy old sewing machines work noisily, the old wooden floors are waxed to perfection only to be littered with shards of wool, pieces of chalk and thread, before a young intern sweeps it all away. The steam from the irons rises through the air, as is the neroli and lavender cologne worn by many of the employees and visitors. Late afternoon light drifts in and you can see the dust particles dancing in the air before they land on the well-worn leather chair in the corner. You can hear muffled laughter from the front of the store during the few seconds the machines are silent.

I love the darker and slightly heavier notes that emerge from behind the flowers, leaves, and herbs. My chemistry amplifies anything remotely honeyed, and beeswax/honey notes become one with my skin. There's a measured sweetness there behind ample wood, and it's both a little wild and highly cultured. Sartorial is such a pleasure to wear, not to mention that it lasts for about 10 hours, something that most fougeres can never achieve, and gives me the thrill of wearing something slightly subversively.

Notes: Aldehydes, ozonic effect, metallic effect, violet leaf, neroli, cardamom, black pepper, fresh ginger, beeswax, cyclamen, linden blossom, lavender, leather, gurjum wood, patchouli, myrrh, cedar wood, tonka bean, oakmoss, white musk, honey effect, old wood effect, vanilla, amber.

Penhaligon's- Sartorial ($125, 100ml EDT) is available from Luckyscent, Penhaligon's boutiques, and Parfum1.com.

Photo of Sean Connery getting fitted for a bespoke suit via blog.triotailoring.com/


  1. Oh my! Connery, Sean Connery. :) I would love to smell that scent on him! I think Bond would approve. Sylvia

  2. Wow amazing post - you really took me back to old Savile Row! x

  3. I bought this perfume two years ago on a trip to Chicago. You can't find Penhaligon's where I live, in Quebec, so I was curious and checked the line. The name of this perfume, Sartorial, caught my eye and I have never fell in love with a scent like this in my entire life. I really never thought of it as a men's perfume. I couldn't wait for autumn to come to use it again! I always put perfume on my chest, and when I wear Sartorial, I can't stop lifting the top of my shirt and take a sniff of my lovely scented....bosom.


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