|Photo: Sweet Escape- model Karlie Kloss in Givenchy Haute Couture shot by Nick Knight for W Magazine, October 2012|
Incense perfumes are usually meditative and promote a reflective solitude. Eau de Madeleine isn't that austere, though the opening has an ethereal dreamy quality that wraps me up and relaxes me from the very first spritz. There's darkness in this Au Pays de la Fleur d'Oranger that I have yet to encounter in most of their perfumes (another exception is their brilliant Neroli Oud which also goes there), and it's the dim light of a well-shaded room decorated to create a respite and a retreat, creating an inner peace.
The combination of incense, delicate rose and other blooms over a musky vanillic base, is hearty enough to support the unique character of Eau de Madeleine. Projection and sillage are equally robust, and longevity is an all-day affair. This is a beautiful perfume that has worked for me in a warmer weather and is just as alluring and effective between the sweaters and scarves of the season. I wish Au Pays de la Fleur d'Oranger would get the attention it deserves as a classic French brand that creates thoroughly modern perfumes.
Eau de Madeleine by Au Pays de la Fleur d'Oranger ($140, 100ml eau de parfum) is available from Indigo Perfumery. They seem to be the only one to stock it, and they also sell samples, so no blind buys necessary.