When Mandy Aftel announced her latest fragrance, Aftelier Amber Tapestry, she billed it as a “comfort scent.” I heard “amber” and “comfort,” and I anticipated a real snickerdoodle of a perfume — a thick, golden, spicy, chewy scent cookie. (Not that this is bad! Set me in front of a pile of snickerdoodles and watch me go.) Yes, Amber Tapestry is warm and resinous with a touch of cinnamon, but cookies don’t pack jasmine, and lots of it. This could be a floral perfume lover’s new favorite oriental fragrance.
Amber Tapestry’s notes include yellow mandarin, jasmine grandiflorum, jasmine sambac, pear, heliotropin, labdanum, ambreine, cinnamon, coumarin, maltol, benzoin, ambergris and castoreum. Just to head off concerns, the pear isn’t discernable as fruit salad, and the cinnamon, while faintly noticeable, doesn’t give Amber Tapestry a gourmand vibe.
Amber Tapestry’s foundation is sweet warmth with a bare hint of dirtiness grounding it, like tasting a few coffee grounds at the bottom of a smooth latte, or sussing out the animal when smelling a leather glove. It’s smooth and baby-skin-soft, with the slightly chewy texture benzoin gives.
Woven into this foundation are thick swaths of jasmine. Sometimes jasmine is tingly and diffusive, but here it smells almost grass green, as if Amber Tapestry’s body absorbed the jasmine’s vaporous bits to leaven it. As a whole, the fragrance holds together in a pleasant alto range with a bit of the resonance of castoreum’s baritone. Unlike many amber-centric perfumes, Amber Tapestry has enough floral "space" in it to wear well in spring, too.
Amber Tapestry Eau de Parfum lasts about two hours on me before I feel the need to boost it with another spritz. Yesterday at work, I carried the sample vial in my pocket and sprayed it on a few times during the day. It was lovely and grounding, but not obtrusive. And, yes, it was comforting.
What kinds of fragrances comfort you?
Aftelier Amber Tapestry Eau de Parfum is $180 for 30 ml, and Amber Tapestry Parfum is $50 for 2 ml and $180 for 8 ml. For information on where to buy it, see Aftelier under Perfume Houses.