Tsarina, part of the London exclusive "Four Corners of the Earth" line by niche perfumery Ormonde Jayne, is advertised as "baroque" as would be expected from a fragrance evoking the furs and jewels of imperial Russia. Much as the sensibilities of democracy and social struggle have imprinted themselves into our collective consciousness, understandably making us abhor the practices of that long-gone era, the opulence of the winter palaces and the decorations on the regal vesture make the eye rest on them in awe and admiration (but lest we forget, people suffered so that the few had those privileges!). The contemporary reality of the scent by Ormonde Jayne, co-created by perfumer Geza Schoen and art director Linda Pilkington, is beyond the dense and thick, breathing with a beautiful luminosity and genuine distinction beyond the class systems.
|Grand Duchess Anastasia Nikolaevna of Russia (pinned on Pinterest from coeurdelhistoire.tumblr.com)|
The inspiration for the new perfume collection 'The Four Corners of the Earth' came from the indigenous flora of different parts of the world Linda Pilkington have visited on her travels. Globetrotting can serve many things and when it's for the benefit of us all, who can blame Linda for wanting to package these olfactory impressions into elixirs to be put onto skin?
Tsarina captures opulence and passion. It demands furs, leather, brocade, heavy silks in sweeping dresses and fabulous jewels to go with her haughty heritage. If you like the opulent feeling that some great florientals of the past exude in spades, such as Caron Narcisse Noir, or Boucheron Femme (the original), my gut feeling tells me that you'd probably love Tsarina, just like I have, and suffer through its exclusive status as a London-only ware. (The rest of the exclusive line includes the India-inspired Nawab of Oudh, the cedar-austere Montabaco inspired by Latin American and the featherweight charm of Chinese-inflected Qi)
|*sigh* I had to post this despite my will, since the costumes are so magnificent...|
Decadent luxury is transliterated into scent with Tsarina, a powerhouse floral oriental perfume reverberating with heaps of natural jasmine sambac (quite the non-Russia-referencing blossom!), unfurling its petals from the bottle like tentacles of glamour. The bright fruity touches give a saturated texture. The soft, vanillic and close to the skin intimacy of leathery labdanum, fusing into an amber-smellingblend (more soft suede than balsam or butch leather one would associate in reference to the usual Cuir de Russie scent themes), underscores this composition—and do I detect a drop of civet, too?
Like the vitraux at the Saint Isaac's Cathedral in Russia, Tsarina is beautifully radiant, powerfully evocative of imperial splendor.
Notes for Ormonde Jayne Tsarina:
top : mandarin, bergamot, coriander, cassis
heart : hedione, freesia, jasmine, sambac, iris, suede
base : sandalwood, cedar, vanilla bean base, labdanum, musk
Tsarina is available exclusively at the Ormonde Jayne boutiques in London, UK.
Related reading on Perfume Shrine: Nawab of Oudh by Ormonde Jayne fragrance review (4 Corners of the Earth line), Ormonde Jayne news and fragrance reviews.