First world perfume writer problems. About a year ago I heard of a new brand from one of my favorite perfumers had debuted. This shows the value of writing things down; because I didn’t. I read eagerly that perfumer Sonia Constant had branched out into her own brand, Ella K. I told myself I needed to contact them for some samples. The date on this review is evidence it slipped my mind. It wasn’t until the Holidays that one of my European connections asked me if I wanted a sample set of Ella K. After a face palm I typed back to send them to me.
Mme Constant along with her partner Olivier Gagliardi founded Ella K Parfums at the end of 2017 opening a boutique in Paris. Mme Constant was inspired by the women travelers of the early part of the 20th century. She cites Karen Blixen, Ella Maillart, and Alexandra David-Neel on the website as some of the people she used to create her fictional heroine, Ella K. The perfumes will chronicle her travels.
The seven perfumes I have send Ella across Asia and Africa except for one in which she pauses in Florence, Italy for a romantic adventure. That’s the one which caught my attention. It is called Baiser de Florence.
The backstory describes Ella and a paramour enjoying the wonders of Florence. After visiting the Uffizi Gallery they push their way into one of the churches. A stolen kiss within the cathedral is the moment captured in Baiser de Florence.
Mme Constant captures that moment of standing in an old church after coming from outside. The smells are the incense and the polished wood over the cold stone. That is where Baiser de Florence opens. Silvery incense and polished cedar are first. The incense has that preferred metallic edge I enjoy. The cedar is dulled as if it has been waxed over and over. It is a more diffuse effect for what usually comes off as a clean woodiness. There is a chill to their combined scents which is the stone surrounding you. Mme Constant slowly adds myrrh to the incense making things warmer. The scent of the iris cosmetics reminds you that Ella is standing next to you. This is a shimmering iris powder effect which finds an ideal set of partners in the resins of incense and myrrh. As you lean in for a kiss the scent of musky skin adds an underpinning to a kiss so sweet a figurative drop of vanilla represents it in the perfume.
Baiser de Florence has 12-14 hour longevity and average sillage.
I am late to discovering this new endeavor of Mme Constant, yet I always am happy to discover new perfume. My impression of Ella K, as a whole, is Mme Constant is enjoying the travels of her heroine. For me to follow on her journeys it begins with a kiss in Florence courtesy of Baiser de Florence.
Disclosure: This review is based on samples I purchased.