As part of the extensive series of events held around the Pitti Fragranze 2018 trade expo, there was the opportunity to ‘make a fragrance’ with one of the heritage Italian farmacies – San Simone. On a balmy Saturday evening I made my way through the city to the Antia Spezieria Erboristeria San Simone.
The session lasted approximately 90 minutes so it was more of an overview than an in depth session on how to make a fragrance. The predominatly female group paid attention to the charasmatic San Simone pharmacist Fernanda Rosso as she talked us through the structure of a fragrance. The top middle and bottom notes and the qualities of each layer of the fragrance. We were given a selection of essential oils to use in our fragance. The range of options was wider then I had anticipated. Note of the decade oud was amoung the choices with various florals and even an aquatic note.
- Sweet Wood
- Orange Blossom
- White Flowers
- Dark Flowers
- Fresh Forest
- Green Notes
We were given a small bottle filled with 15 ml of perfumers alcohol. We were told that there should be a total of 52 drops of essential oil in that. Those 52 drops were then divided into 12 drops for the top notes, 15 for the middle and 25 for the base notes.We were advised to use no more two oils were layer of the fragrance pyrimid but were given free reign otherwise. We spent some time familiariasing ourselveswith the notes no blotters before we decided on a forumula.
I am not a patchouli fan and I did not want to do an oud fragrance. Sandalwood and Amber were the aromas I was most drawn too, and I incorporated them in a two to one ratio. I am a fan of colognes and citrus scents but having been immersed in fragrance for the past two days I decided to go for something different. Iris, can be powdery or earthy and I enjoy it both ways so I plumped for a generous dose of it. It worked best with the essential oil blend ‘dark flowers’. I don’t know what it contained, but I suspect some violet (leaf). For the top note, the green blend was perfect but citrus didn’t work so unusally for me I plumped for Blackberry.
This is a different kind of fragrance for me but I really really like it. An amber scent is defined as an oriental but this in my opinion is not. It is a woody with the iris really coming forward in the second hour and the sandalwood remaining prominent throughout the drydown.
If you are in Florence head to the Antica Speziera Erboristeria San Simone on Via Ghibellina 190/R, 50122 Firenze, Italia.
Read more about my time in Florence here and here. Catch up with more fragrance reviews here and here.