I LOVE figs. The ooey gooey richness of the dried version. The bright yet fleshy richness of the ripe fruit. Yes, the recurring adjective when I think of all forms of fig is their scrumptious richness. Aftelier’s Fig definitely has a richness borrowed from the fruit. Yet, it has an elegance that I haven’t encountered before. A fruity, boozy elegance, if you will. More like forbidden than fresh wholesome fruit, with almost a plummy prune-like quality.
I happened to read on the Aftelier website that Mandy Aftel had named a lily perfume, ‘Orchid’ only because she thought of her favorite oriental lilies as being an olfactory equivalent of the visual impression of Orchids. And then when I smelled Fig, I had to smile at her whimsical naming schemes. To think that this is just a ‘Fig Perfume’ would be underestimating it. Mandy Aftel has painted an impressionist’s Fig. Trish from Scent Hive also seemed to view this perfume as such. And I agree with her, that this impressionistic perfume, does not evoke Monet’s gentle, watery strokes. To me, it seems to contain colors from Rembrandt’s palette.. And instead of limiting the perfume to being an impression of a fig, Mandy extends the fig, nudging it into an unfamiliar realm of brown burnished silk and heady wine-drenched sunshine.
Each time I sniff ‘Fig’ (and also Cepes and Tuberose), I feel both a strange longing and sadness. One of my favorite characters as a child was Anne (of Green Gables) and I especially identified with her love of beautiful things. And how something too beautiful ‘aches’. I think that is one of the reasons I have to write and one of the reasons I blog. It is my
valiant attempt to pin down something beautiful, an exercise in self-delusion maybe, but it makes beauty more bearable by making me think it will last.
[I realized Marina says something very similar in her beautiful review of Aftelier’s Parfum de Maroc]
This warmly rounded perfume hides a few spicy corners that are more pronounced when layered with Shiso. It is one of my favorite layering combinations . Try it! Now!
Disclosure: I won a mini of this in a draw! Images via We Heart It