As a gift to myself I purchased the Ineke Deluxe Sampler Set. Ineke perfumes is a niche perfumer out of San Francisco. Ineke Rühland is a professional nose creating original fragrances in her independent studio in San Francisco. Canadian born and educated, she moved to Europe in 1988. Fluent in three languages (English, French and Dutch), Ineke completed her formal perfumery studies at ISIPCA in France, the only university-level perfumery school in the world. She honed her techniques with sojourns to Grasse, the city that spawned perfumery in France. Ineke apprenticed at an esteemed fragrance house for three years before moving to San Francisco and eventually launching her own line in the summer of 2006.
The Ineke Deluxe Sample pack contains 5 of her 6 fragrances to date. This lovely pack is only $25 USD, and if you purchase it on line from ineke.com the $25 can be put towards the purchase of a full size bottle of your choice!!
After sniffing and wearing all of the 5 fragrances it’s hard to choose just one that I like. I like them all for different reasons. But I must say my favorite is After My Own Heart. I didn’t think I would like it as much as I do.
I have taken a different approach to writing about these fragrances. I will give you the name of the fragrance, the notes, according to the perfumer and a little vignette to accompany the scent.
And here we go.
After My Own Heart. This is a true lilac scent. The top notes, according to Ineke are Bergamot, Raspberry and Crisp Green Foliage. The middle note is Lilac, and the bottom notes are Sandalwood, Heliotrope and Musk. When I first spray this fragrance, the strong green foliage and raspberry give way to the strong lilac. As it dries down you definitely still get the Lilac but the heliotrope is a standout. I am anosmic to musk. That means my nose is unable to detect the scent. Some people can smell it and some people can’t smell it. I’m one that can’t which means that I will never be “The Nose” of any perfume house. That’s OK, though. I get a headache from too much perfume. This scent reminds me of summer. I’m sitting on the back porch. It’s dusk. The sun is almost ready to set. Everything has a golden cast to it. The air is not too humid and the cat is sitting on your lap purring ever so softly. Crickets are singing and there is a slight breeze which makes the leaves rustle in the trees. The breeze brings the thick scent of Lilac from the bushes in the garden.  Bumblebees  harvest pollen from the herb garden, and the buzz buzz coupled with purr purr and kneeding of the cat on your belly, would normally lull you into a relaxed state, but this time you are reminded to clip his claws. That animal is drawing blood!
Balmy Days and Sundays. A lovely clean and green scent. The Notes are: Top - Freesia, Leafy Greens and Grass. Middle - Honeysuckle, Rose and Mimosa. The Base - Chypre Accent and Musk. Another musk base. I guess I only smell the Chypre. Chypre is a name used to describe a family (or concept) of perfumes, usually with a top note of citrus and woody base notes derived from oak moss and ambergris. Just so you know. Hey I had to look it up so I didn’t know either. What Balmy Days & Sundays smells like to me is Green with a slight hint of rose and strongest hint of Mimosa. Oh my. This is a lovely clean fragrance. This is the scent you wear when you go on a picnic in a pretty white cotton dress with the eyelet detail across the neckline, sleeves and hem. You are wearing those black ballerina flats that make you feel like Audrey Hepburn. Your picnic is under a large maple tree. The sun shines though and tickles your eyes and lands on your cheeks. A small breeze blows and the little seed pods flitter down like mini helicopters and land lightly on your blanket. You kick off your shoes, pour a glass of cool lemonade with a sprig of mint and breathe deep. This is the scent of Balmy Days & Sundays. The scent of carefree afternoons looking like Audrey Hepburn in a pretty white dress under a maple tree. Let's hope the ants stay away from the picnic.
Chemical Bonding. This is your citrus and tea mixed together. The notes are Smooth Citrus Cocktail, Tea and Blackberry. The middle is a Dewy Peony and the base is Vetiver, Amber and Powdery Musk. Vetiver is a grass used in many perfumes. It’s closely related to other fragrant grasses like Lemongrass and Citronella. Chemical Bonding is my Arnold Palmer. It is lemonade and iced tea. It’s “Ladies who Lunch”. It is big hats and even bigger bank accounts. It is lunch at the country club after a game of tennis. It is a cool drink after the 18th hole of golf. It is the hot summer sun and the cool smack of the air conditioning when you walk inside. It is cool and refreshing and lemony. The perfect summer drink, the perfect summer scent.
Derring-Do for men. This is a men’s fragrance but could be worn by a woman. It’s “Metrosexual” for lack of a better word, in my limited vocabulary. Top Notes are a Fresh Citrus, Blend, Rain Notes, and Cyclamen (Part of the primrose family). Middle notes of Magnolia and Fougere Accents (umm I have no idea what that is). Base notes of Guiacac wood, Cedar wood and Musk. The initial spray is really in your face citrus and neutral male scent, but the dry down is strong with Cedar wood and since I have no idea what Guiacac Wood is, I’ll wager a bet that I smell that too. Derring-Do is the first spring rain in a tall forest. Your hair is plastered to your face from the recent shower. The raindrops were soft and sweet on your skin. Now that the rain has stopped the creatures of the forest seem to start talking all at once. A giant game of telephone has started. The squirrel says. "It has rained and my tree house is flooded. The nuts I stored over the winter have been unearthed, it’s time to eat!" The Wren says. "The Squirrel is having a feast at his tree house. His winter nuts are finally ready to eat." The grasshopper says. "The squirrel has exposed his nuts and is having a party at his house." The Chipmunk, who also happens to be the Police of the forest, arrests the squirrel for indecent exposure!
Evening Edged In Gold. This rich heady scent is described as the following. Top Notes. Gold Osmanthus and Plum. Middle Notes of Angel’s trumpet, Saffron and Cinnamon Bark. Lastly, base notes of Midnight Candy, Leather and Woods. This is the rich bread pudding at the end of the night. This is the leather chair in a study. This is the cinnamon coffee to end a perfect day. A strong belt of Cognac, a huge bite of bread pudding with extra cream and relaxing in a comfy leather chair with your favorite book (hopefully not Twilight. Oh god I hope you all aren’t Twilight fans) Ah rich, cinnamon-y and woody leather. Sleek, Seductive and Sparkly…like a Vampire.
Do you need this? Yes. If you want a unique fragrance. If you don't want to smell like every other Marc Jacobs Daisy Clone (psst. I have Marc Jacobs Daisy and I love it too. Don't take it personally, but we smell like everyone else when we wear this). If you can't find a local store that sells the Ineke line then this sampler pack is perfect for you. The fragrances you don't like you can give away to your friends and family all while keeping the one you like and using that $25 credit toward a full bottle. How cool is that?
all images from ineke.com