Rose d'Amour (Rose of Love) is a rose composition inspired by Chanel No5 and its original dwarfing overdose of aldehydes.
What I like about this perfume is that perfumer Camille Latron managed to convey the modernist, daring and revolutionary sides of aldehydes, the manner in which they must have exploded onto the scene in 1921...
It is as if Rose d'Amour allowed us to open an imaginary window onto a long-forgotten and by essence impossible to capture sensation, that of experiencing the olfactory emotions our grand-mothers or great-grand mothers must have felt upon opening a bottle of No5 in 1921. In this modernist, even constructivist accent echoing the hypnotic rhythmic sounds and violence of factory wheels, I am reminded of Modern Times by Charlie Chaplin and of both its fascination for and defiance of the modern machine.
The aldehydes in Rose d'Amour are wonderfully off-beat, raw and unadulterated - I want to say "smoking" - yet after a while they seem to slide into a sensation of peppery femininity almost as if with regrets, as if this woman who is represented by the forcefulness of the aldehydes only reluctantly gave way to love and softer feelings. The peppery facet here recalls another classic perfume-house signature, that of Caron. It is as if this perfume were dedicated to a woman who could only wear the original 1920s No5, the 1910s Narcisse Noir and 1950s Poivre by Caron.
A green facet emerges, which is citrus-y, aromatic (ginger) and rests on raspy almost paper-cut-sharp green galbanum, another olfactory symbol of feminine emancipation since Vent Vert by Balmain composed by nose Germaine Cellier in 1945 who certainly did her share to free women from their corsets, olfactorily speaking but also simply paid homage to the new women revealed by WWII and the wind of freedom and hope that blew on everyone (for the more wistful counterpart to Vent Vert see Coeur-Joie by the same nose). The whole scent feels uncompromising.
What is lovely about Rose d'Amour is how much it is able to evoke the magnificence of vintage perfumes - oakmoss included - while smelling as fresh as the dew and making us remember the women who dared to wear these types of scents on the day of their introductions when they were edgy before they became classic.
I like to imagine an early-day perfumista waiting in front of the door of a perfumery on the morning of a fragrance launch and getting to smelling a highly unusual scent for the first time.
Rose d'Amour projects a very strong femininity with almost no sweet notes in it. It could even be characterized as a bit hard.
But is love such a soft game?
Opening notes: ginger, galbanum, aldehydes, pink berries
Sustained notes: rose essence, absolute of rose, iris, jasmine, natural narcissus
Lingering notes: Moss, nutmeg, pepper, vetyver