I love Voleur de Roses! Some rose fragrances are just too much...cloying, "funeral home" strong. This one is just right, and the patchouli adds the depth and sexy appeal. I'm saving up for a FB of this!
Voleur de Roses is a nice soft rose with patchouli. At first spray one might say that it comes on strong, since the rose is dominant here with a background of patchouli. Patchouli can sometimes be overpowering and cloying, not here. To my nose it is not a strong rose/patchouli like other fragrance I own. The dry down is very nice, warm and quite floral.
Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. The opening accord of dry, yeasty rose and patchouli is exquisite. Then, after I've worn it for five or ten minutes, the patchouli and rose mutate into…cannabis smoke. That’s right: it doesn't smell like a head shop - it smells like my brother-in-law's bong!
When the drydown arrives, two or three hours later, it's a lovely arrangement of woods, but what Voleur de Roses does in the middle is beyond my tolerance. I won't appear in public smelling like I've just smoked a whole pound of weed.
I am hard pressed to think of another perfume that is so instantly attractive to my nose. It is a relatively simple scent based on three notes - rose, patchouli, and plum - but the interplay between these three notes is fascinating. The opening is that of plums on the turn, a sweet smell of fruit slowly rotting in the sun. This is a genius note, because since it is so quickly joined by a wet young rose and damp, earthy patchouli, you aren't quite sure whether the fruity decay belongs to the rose or to the freshly upturned earth, so the rotting plums effectively form a bridge between the rose and patchouli. It actually kind of reminds me of Diorella a bit - not the scent itself, but the way that the note of rotting fruit is set against the earthy background notes to create dissonance and interest. The feel of the perfume is wet, lush, and what I can only describe as "botanical".
I don't find this as dark or as brooding as other reviewers. The patchouli dominates the rose, yes, but it is not a sinister, raw, or aggressive sort of patchouli. In fact, that brings me to what I see as a big drawback to this scent: the whole thing comes off as quite delicate and transparent, like a Japanese silk screen print. With notes as "tasty" as these, you want the scent to be deep, bloody, resonant and almost pounding in their intensity. But this never provides that rich type of boldness I crave. Another issue is longevity / sillage. Normally, I don't care about this at all, placing most if not all of the importance on the quality of the fragrance itself and whether I respond to it or not. But I have to say that I would like to at least be able to smell the fragrance on me one hour after applying.....
I had the opportunity to buy this at a very good price from a fellow basenoter, but after dithering for a few days, I decided not to pull the trigger, due to these issues. I tested about three vials of the fragrance over the course of two days, each time dumping the entire vial on my skin: each time, the same thing happened - after one hour, the fragrance had grown almost too faint to smell, and after two hours, all trace of it was gone. It's a great pity, because the smell itself is just amazing. It really is. One of the most gorgeous perfumes I've tested in the last six months. But even at the excellent price at which this was offered, it is still too costly to use purely as a cologne splash, which is the only way I could ever get this to stay perceptibly on my skin. Two big thumbs up for the smell itself though.
I like roses. But here the rose note is dark and sad.VdR reminds me of cologne and after shave. I would not recommend it to women. Nice the rosewood note in the heart, anyway.