Today we're helping Nicola, who will be getting married in January and wants to find a perfect fragrance so she'll always have a scent memory associated with the day. Because the weather will be cold and the setting (see below) grand, she'd like something rich and romantic, but she'd like to avoid the sorts of typical gourmands (no stewed fruits or chocolate notes, please) that might immediately spring to mind. Her budget is flexible but may not extend into the Amouage range. Here is what we know about Nicola:
She's in her late 20s, and is a Ph.D. student at Durham University in the UK, researching Old Norse translations of medieval female saints' lives.
She loves reading, opera, walks in the local countryside and travel to cities with beautiful architecture.
Because of her studies she speaks and reads several languages, including Icelandic and Latin, and she loves learning more — Welsh is next on her list.
She says her style is tailored and luxurious with an eclectic twist; she loves a cashmere sweater with a pencil skirt and tall hunting boots, matched with a Swedish army coat or a bunch of antique rings.
Nicola loves incense, jasmine, iris, oak moss, pine, rose, lily of the valley, charred wood, and some boozy notes (particularly peated whiskey or gin). Her short list of favorites includes L'Artisan Parfumeur Iris Pallida, Comme des Garçons Avignon, Etat Libre d'Orange Jasmin et Cigarettes, Guerlain Mitsouko (the old formulation), and the first ten minutes of Penhaligon's Juniper Sling (she finds it dies on her after that).
Nicola dislikes things that are overly sweet or gourmand, soliflore tuberose is just too much (please, no Carnal Flower!) and violet tends to smell sour on her.
Nicola has been too busy to really explore a wedding perfume, but here are a few things she has tried lately:
Frederic Malle Dans tes Bras: too sweet, and the patchouli was overwhelming.
Penhaligon's LP No 9: again, too much patchouli and rather cloying.
Comme des Garçons 8 88: she liked the warmth and spiciness.
What say you?