Bois de Violette by Serge Lutens
Cedarwood, Violet Leaves, Flowers.
So many Lutens have that effervescent quality in their openings and Bois de Violette is no exception. Some of them come off as a hairspray accord on my skin, but happily BdV isn't one of them.
Woody violet? Yes it is, but you must remember that this is the world according to Serge and his interpretations aren't along the same lines as convention. Bois de Violette is sweet overall, but stops short of becoming too much of a good thing. I can image some will find this scent molto dolce, yet I believe it's properly tuned and more in line with a feminine fragrance.
There's also a leathery quality to Bois de Violette. I get the impression of a subtle iris-labdanum combo in the works. Yes, I'm aware it's not listed, but I still smell it and it is more pronounced than the wood accord from the very beginning.
After 5 minutes, I am persuaded that a more appropriate name for this very nice fragrance would have been Cuir de Violette. The wood quality is minimal on my skin and I am not complaining. I am a fan of wood and leather and I have been caught off guard. Still, I find Bois de Violette a very respectable scent and unfortunately one that leans too far feminine for me to wear comfortably.
As you might expect, this particular Lutens creation is simplistic and nowhere near as complex as others in his line. The violet note has hints of green and manages to stay centered for the life of the scent. Once the slightly fizzy aspect in the opening accord subsides, a leather incrementally gains momentum and seems to shadow the violet. It never overtakes it, but it does make its presence felt.
This is the totality of Bois de Violette in my wearings. Uncomplicated, yet substantial and a scent I can picture on a corporate woman who means business. Sillage is respectable and longevity is 5 hours or better on me. The violet note is long lasting and sans the sharpness usually attributed to it. I think the Serge did a nice job, so Bois de Violette gets a thumbs up for aroma, but not for price point. As always, a sample wear is recommended.