Début by DelRae Roth and Michel Roudnitska, Parfums DelRae;
Cinabre by Maria Candida Gentile, Maria Candida Gentile; After My Own Heart by Ineke Rühland, Ineke.
The May 2013 collection weaves a number of themes into a rich story that could be told only now. It features scents from three female visionaries during the month that we celebrate the strength and vision of the world’s women and mothers. It showcases three flowers synonymous with the month of May, each increasingly complex and reflective of nature’s own growing complexity as her flowers awaken one by one. Finally, it brings the most uplifting resolution to what has been, in many parts of the Northern Hemisphere, a cruelly dawdling winter. While the April 2013 collection was about the promise of nature’s rebirth, Fleurs de Mai is about its fullest realization.
Ineke Rühland’s After My Own Heart creates an olfactory echo of the lilac festivals held around the world in the month of May. While essentially a linear soliflore—meaning that its aim is to capture the scent of a single type of flower—it takes gentle turns from green to purple sweetness, then from purple sweetness to creamy woods, never straying from its photorealistic nature. Of all three scents in Fleurs de Mai, this is the one that brings people’s memories to the surface. Anyone who has experienced a lilac bush in all of its May splendor will smell After My Own Heart and find themselves both transported and grateful.
Lily of the valley is traditionally given on May Day in France as a gesture of friendship and luck. The flower itself is a study in contrasts: at once lushly white and sparkling green, with a sweetness both cool and creamy. Début, from Parfums DelRae, is DelRae Roth’s elegant creation that takes the study in contrasts deeper by pairing this feminine flower with the masculine scent of vetiver. The result is a masterpiece that shows many faces throughout its development, all of them graceful. Début is compelling in the literal sense: Its outstanding longevity compels the wearer to bring the wrist to the nose over and over and over again.
Given its list of notes, Cinabre, by Italian perfumer Maria Candida Gentile, should not hold as many delightful surprises as it does. But such is the alchemy of perfume. It is a shape-shifting rose—incorporating May rose absolute—that announces itself with an attention-grabbing blast of warm, gingery peppercorn. The opening truly conjures the color of the perfume’s name: the deep, brick-red of cinnabar. Moments later, a medley of roses rushes to the foreground to soften those wonderfully razor-sharp edges until Cinabre is powdery pink air. Just when you think it's done, vanilla and myrrh rise up to round out the composition, leaving behind a deep, smokey sweetness that creates a wholly satisfying contrast to everything that happened before.
We hope you fall in love with these thoughtful beauties as recklessly as we did. And remember: If you’re a subscriber, you have an $18 credit to put toward the purchase of a full bottle of After My Own Heart, Début, or Cinabre. In other words, reckless love is perfectly warranted.