Total Reviews: 4
Not a straight rose by any means, this has associations of powder compacts, chemical dust, and a sourish greenness around the edges. Doesn’t sound very appetizing, and yet, as always, it’s in the integration of elements that the skill lies.
There’s only a brief glimpse of the juicy and rich rose materials at the start before they start to morph under the influence of the other players. Most notable to my nose is heliotrope which brings a Nahema-like quality to this creation (alas without the propulsive dynamism characteristic of that perfume), offering powdery, marzipan-like accents, turning the rose away from nature and towards the dressing table. Another major player is a curious pesticide-laden peach note, which imparts little by way of fruitiness, instead drawing one’s attention to the structure and artifice of this offering. It doesn’t seem out of place, probably because it is bedded down on a soft vanilla, just a hint of clove and soothing balsamic elements.
This is a rose that is at once a real rose and a representation of the thing crafted in cardboard and velvet and lord knows what else. It’s an effective juxtaposition – a perfume that seems to be drawing attention to the process of combination that resulted in its creation while still giving pleasure.
Some hours in, in the deep drydown, Rose Étoile de Hollande settles almost completely into Nahema’s lap.
This scent is named for one of the finest roses anyone could grow, a red hybrid tea climber antique which repeats well in Mediterranean climates, but is not so easy to grow in the CONUS. (But it can be done, with careful siting, and is worth it.)
The scent is worthy of its namesake. And better than I was expecting.The opening hour is dominated by greenery, bergamot, peach and geranium. Mid section is mainly rose, as you would expect, and the rose here is better than most. Not overly fruit-juicy, as too many are. There is a touch of patch, but just as a blending note. More prominent in the dry down is vanilla, but again, it is not too sweet nor too gourmand.
This scent had two distinct stages for me: a green, chypre style rose to start. Terrrific. And a restrained, vanilla backed dry down. Very nice.
Rose Etoile de Hollande went about 6 hours for me. With moderate projection, fading to mild.
disclaimer: I am a lifelong rose grower, but I dislike most rose fragrances.
Another masterpiece from Mona di Orio. With her last scent she bridges the difference in style between her Signature and Les Nombres d'Or collections. The opening of Rose Etoille is very similar to the familiar opening of most of the Signature scents: I am smelling something but I am not sure what it is and I am definitely not sure if I like it. As with her old collection, you need to be patient for the first one or two hours and let the magic do its work.
And MAGIC it is! A soft, slightly powdery, slightly lipstick-like rose emerges. I do have a soft spot for lipstick-like rose scents, enjoying FM Lipstick Rose, HdP Moulin Rouge and L'Artisan Drole de Rose. Drole de Rose is the closest to Rose Etoille of the trio. Oh, but Rose Etoille adds a subtle new dimension to the concept. It feels as if it were constantly changing and staying unmoving at the same time. It envelops and delights, softly whispering her presence. It is mesmerizingly, almost heart-wrenchingly beautiful. Just like her Oud, Mona's Rose feels also very personal and very much alive. It is not a product, completed by the artist and then become impersonal after being put on the market. The great master is very much present in it as if she were still delighting herself in the finished composition while I am wearing it.
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Rose and powder combine to make a nice fragrance. Luckily the powder doesn't overwhelm. There is nothing sharp to contrast. I wish the Aldehyde were more pronounced.