Gem of a Scent

By Jo Phillips

Once in a while within a crowded market, a gem of a person will shine brightly and stand out from a crowd. In the past, this was rarely women but a few have stood up beyond the parapet and shone. Sometimes it is the same with products, especially with the glut of fragrances now available, yet there are some real treasures to be found. It does often take someone special to help polish a stone so it can be seen. A new website unites the idea of trie magnificence. Find out more here in Gem of a Scent

Throughout the 1940s, 50s, and 60s, there was a female perfumer Germaine Cellier who did change the world of scent and redefined what was possible, with daring compositions based on doses of ingredients in percentages never used before.

Germaine Cellier 1909–1976 was a French perfumer known for creating bold, pioneering fragrances. Cellier was also one of the first prominent female perfumers, at a time when the industry was dominated by men.

She held technical expertise that was exhibited in her work and was known for her strength of character which she distilled into each fragrance. Think divinity with the likes of Piguet’s Bandit, Fracas’s weaponized femininity, and the quiet malice lurking in the depths of Balmain’s Jolie Madame.

Not well known outside her own industry her perfumes were dynamic yet very comfortable in their own skin. They never tried to imitate anything else that came before them and so she ended up setting trends of her own.

Internationally renowned perfumer Bernard Chant himself made three scents with the same skeletal structure as Bandit, Cabochard for Gres, Estee Lauder’s Azuree, and ever loved, Aramis. His nod do we assume, to this great woman?

But he is not the only person to add praise to this shining example of perfume brilliance. Perfume lover and expert Brooke Belldon took the story of Germaine Cellier and explored it in her own new website, sainte cellier, citing this woman as her point of inspiration and also reference.

In creating Sainte Cellier, I wanted to make space for perfumes with the same strength of character. One of the things I love most about Cellier’s work is the way people relate to it. The parts of themselves they discover are reflected in it, and the characters, lives, and stories it inspires. It’s a shared understanding that serves as a secret password that grants entry to a space where perfume is interpreted in a way that goes beyond how it smells

Brooke Belldon

Brooke talks of the experience she hopes to bring to the site via the unusual perfumes she sells; scents accompanied by great swaths of slow-moving colours, sweeping emotion, or even impure thoughts.

None of Sainte Cellier’s perfumes are ‘nice’ They are not the ‘beige style cover-all’ perfumes found in a chemist or department store. Brooke herself says they are for dreamers and deep thinkers, deviants, and disagreeable characters.

A digital extension of her love of fragrance, having spent the past decade exploring and collecting perfume. She has collected in the past fragrances from as far back as the 1930s to the most modern scents that have just come out. Showing by this her true dedication to perfumes.

Brands included on her site already are Marlou, Eris, The Zoo and Les Indemmodables also coming soon is Isabelle Larignon with Italy’s Bogue Profumo as well as Rubini and Berceuse from the USA. , also coming soon are

Brands included on her site already are Marlou, Eris, The Zoo and Les Indemmodables, also coming soon is Isabelle Larignon with Italy’s Bogue Profumo as well as Rubini and Berceuse from the USA.

Eris Parfums was launched in 2016, a sensual labour of love by writer and vintage perfume connoisseur Barbara Herman, which was named after the Greek goddess of discord.

She made initial hits with her first three scents  Night Flower, Ma Bête and Belle de Jour and has now added since then, Mx., Mxx., Green Spell and Scorpio Rising.

Marlou’s perfumes explore the hinterlands of skin and ask us to consider if we have forgotten how to live with the intimacies of our own odours. We walk an uneasy path between desire and revulsion.

The Zoo® is a fabulous playground and laboratory for perfumer Christophe Laudamiel. It has allowed him to compose an anthology of scents suffused with his laconic style. There are touches of dreamy Pierre et Gilles, Zaha Hadid’s brutalist curves, and some ruthlessly tailored compositions that all somehow come together through the sheer force of Christophe’s talent.

In Les Indémodables, the grand cru materials have a truly elegant form and a sense of impact that renders the compositions both sculptural and radiant. There is seductive lustre in the way the materials have been assembled, with perfumers Antoine Lie and Florence Fouillet Dubois using classic perfumery tropes and infusing them with sublime ingredients.

The most exciting part of this project borne of love is the depth of each brand that explodes via each and every scent. Complex, deep, intriguing, not top notes that waft to nothing, not overtly sweet vanilla bourne from marketing briefs, but sensual, sexy, statement scents for those that truly love fragrance. It’s fair to even say each of the scents available have a clear stamp, a clear personality, a memory even if it’s a brand-new elixir.

Perfume is a spirit that’s accompanied me through so many moments; accentuating every memory and offering comfort, tranquility and beauty when it’s most needed.

Brooke Belldon

At its very finest perfume is an art-form, one that brings reactions dramas, and passions to life; a great fragrance will always create a reaction. But as the world of niche perfumery gets bigger there is no need for another great headline-making perfume but there is room for independent creations that cater to the true lovers of these bottled emotions.

I love that there are people craving this kind of fragrant drama, and I love that I get to bring it to them! 

Brooke Belldon

In a climate of difficulty, it is often the space where newness comes through where different thinking has space, and this is just what Brooke with her site Sainte Cellier is thankfully doing.

To find out more about Sainte please visit Here

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