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Characteristics of the Violet Flower
The violet, a perennial plant belonging to the purplish family, is particularly known for its fragrant variety. With a thick stump and an elongated stolon, this 5 to 15 cm plant features oval stipules with fringed borders and rounded, toothed leaves near the root. Most violets boast a dark purple color, though some rare varieties are white. Violets typically bloom in the spring and can be found in woods, meadows, and hedges.
Although the violet's scent is pleasant, it is also elusive, as it has a tendency to numb the olfactory nerves. In perfumery, it is not the flowers that are distilled but the leaves, which produce a synthetic raw material—an absolute with a powdery, green, waxy, and earthy scent. The well-known violet flower note, softer in comparison, is based on a synthetic molecule. Perfume creators often use a blend of other materials like ionones to achieve the violet flower note, resulting in a smooth, sweet, floral, and warm scent reminiscent of violet candy. Soliflore violets are predominantly feminine, fruity, and powdery. It takes a ton of flowers to extract just 30g of violet flower essence.
In the language of flowers, violets symbolize simplicity and modesty. The powdery scent of violet conveys a sense of discretion and passionate expression. Yves Saint Laurent's Paris is a classic example of a violet-based perfume, featuring a woody and floral note combined with sandalwood, iris, May rose, and bergamot. The violet adds freshness and delicacy to the fragrance, which epitomizes cheerfulness, elegance, glamour, and romanticism.
Other notable violet flower-containing perfumes include Les Caprices de Lolita by Lolita Lempicka, an oriental fragrance with a fruity top note, a fine middle note, and a base note of white musks with a powdery violet touch. Insolence by Guerlain is another example, with striking notes of iris, rose, violet, and orange blossom. Sensual, chic, and opulent, the violet's presence is both dominant and explosive in this fragrance.
Here are some other renowned violet-based fragrances:
- Guerlain's L'Heure Bleue (1912): A sophisticated and elegant blend of powdery violet, iris, and sandalwood, perfect for special occasions.
- Caron's Narcisse Noir (1911): An oriental fragrance combining jasmine, violet, and amber for a sensual and mysterious evening scent.
- Jicky by Guerlain (1889): One of the first modern perfumes featuring a prominent violet note, this complex and sophisticated scent is perfect for women who want to make a statement.
- Mitsouko by Guerlain (1919): A delicate and feminine oriental floral fragrance with a blend of lily of the valley, violet, and sandalwood, ideal for everyday wear.
- Shalimar by Guerlain (1925): A luxurious and seductive oriental fragrance that combines jasmine, rose, and sandalwood, perfect for special occasions.
- L'Air du Temps by Nina Ricci (1948): A classic and elegant floral fragrance blending rose, lily of the valley, and violet, suitable for women of all ages.
- Miss Dior by Christian Dior (1947): A feminine and romantic floral fragrance featuring a mix of rose, jasmine, and violet, perfect for everyday wear.
- Chanel No. 5 by Chanel (1921): A sophisticated and elegant classic fragrance composed of jasmine, rose, and ylang-ylang, perfect for special occasions.
- Joy by Jean Patou (1929): A luxurious and seductive oriental floral fragrance blending jasmine, orange blossom, and ylang-ylang, ideal for special events.
- Opium by Yves Saint Laurent (1977): A powerful and seductive oriental fragrance combining spices, jasmine, and sandalwood, perfect for evening wear.
- Poison by Christian Dior (1985): A sexy and daring oriental fragrance that blends jasmine, rose, and patchouli, perfect for women who want to make a statement.
- J'adore by Dior (1999): A glamorous and feminine floral fruity fragrance with a mix of jasmine, tuberose, and orange blossom, perfect for special occasions.
- Light Blue by Dolce & Gabbana (2001): A fresh and feminine aquatic floral fragrance blending bergamot, jasmine, and musk, ideal for everyday wear.
- Black Opium by Yves Saint Laurent (2014): A sexy and addictive oriental gourmand fragrance with a mix of coffee, jasmine, and vanilla, perfect for evening wear.
- La Vie Est Belle by Lancôme (2012): A luxurious and feminine floral gourmand fragrance combining iris, praline, and patchouli, ideal for special occasions.
- Miss Dior Blooming Bouquet by Christian Dior (2014): A delicate and feminine floral fragrance featuring a blend of rose, peony, and lily of the valley, perfect for everyday wear.
- Daisy Eau So Fresh by Marc Jacobs (2012): A fresh and feminine floral fruity fragrance with a mix of daisy, grapefruit, and lily of the valley, ideal for everyday wear.
- Chloe Eau de Parfum by Chloe (2008): A sophisticated and elegant floral woody fragrance combining lily of the valley, freesia, and sandalwood, perfect for women of all ages.
- Giorgio Armani Si by Giorgio Armani (2013): A fresh and feminine floral fruity fragrance with a blend of bergamot, mandarin orange, and jasmine, perfect for everyday wear.
- Calvin Klein Euphoria by Calvin Klein (2005): A sexy and seductive oriental floral fragrance that mixes bergamot, cassis, and orchid, perfect for evening wear.
The charm and allure of the violet flower continue to captivate perfume creators and fragrance enthusiasts alike. With its subtle, powdery scent and its versatile pairing possibilities, the violet has become an enduring symbol of elegance, romance, and sophistication in the world of perfumery.