Ultramarine Blue by Dawn Spencer Hurwitz for DSH Perfumes 2015




Hey All,

A while ago when I got the DSH Chroma Sample Set I grabbed every dabber out and had a quick sniff. It is fun finding the instant likes, loves and loathes. I will admit that Ultramarine Blue jumped into the WTF category. It was so interesting, unusual and confronting. No, I’m not sure why because it really smells like the beachside in summer but with an undercurrent of menace. Anyway I filed it away under Must Revisit and thought you might like to come along on the ride with me today to see if it lives up to its

Ultramarine Blue by DSH Perfumes 2015

Ultramarine Blue by Dawn Spencer Hurwitz


Fragrantica gives these featured accords:
Chamomile, cassis, cumin, ozonic notes, musk, sea notes, orris root, petitgrain, sandalwood, violet woodsorrel

OK, so I decanted the whole vial into a spritz and did the whole 18 blasts on the back of my hand and forearm. WHOA!! No turning back now.

Salty citrus, briny seas, a herbal greenness that feels both freshly chopped and mulched. The cassis is green and biting, like pulling ivy off the wood fence and scrunching it up in the summer after swimming in the pool. There’s nothing easy about Ultramarine Blue. I find it disturbing and challenging. Imagine oversalting cucumber, add a little under the boardwalk bilge-e-ness, tear some rose leaves and dig in a super heated grass mulch pile. Then you can smell exactly what my nose is giving me from Ultramarine Blue.


Doesn’t sound appealing does it? Well, while it’s not exactly my fragrant cup of tea I do love the way it moves through the pieces of the story. Dawn has a deft way with ingredients that means even though it’s not a spritz & go frag it is compelling and keeps drawing my nose back to my hand.

After an hour or so Ultramarine Blue becomes driftwood. it’s absolutely beautiful. Calm, tranquil and an unruffled seaside escapade in the glorious sunshine.

DSH Perfumes has loads of sizes and variants of Ultramarine Blue starting at $6

Want something unusual, interesting, refreshing and ultimately peaceful? I think you might like to try Ultramarine Blue.
Is there an aquatic that you love?
Portia xx

Rubis Rosé by Dawn Spencer Hurwitz for DSH Perfumes 2014




Hey Fumies,

This week is Use My Samples & Decants Week. You’ll be reading a bunch of first time experiences of fragrances that have been here in vials or decants and sat unworn so far. Yes, if it’s a 1ml vial I will pour the whole thing on and wear it for a day. Obviously they have been sniffed before and often dabbed but got put in the Must Further Investigate pile and then left. So hopefully I will get to use at least 7, hopefully more.

Rubis Rosé by DSH Perfumes 2014

Rubis Rosé by Dawn Spencer Hurwitz


Fragrantica gives these featured accords:
Ambergris, black tea, Bulgarian rose, rose, olibanum, rose oil, oakmoss, green tea, guaiac wood, green leaves, myrrh, neroli, orris, pink pepper, raspberry, fruity notes, tea rose

Rubis Rosé opens dry, sweet and fruity. It’s an unusual opening that brings to mind rose petals in black tea with a lemon slice. The fruit isn’t quite lemon though, a bit less antiseptic and friendlier. Maybe more a Rosé wine, a dryer, less fizzy one, lightly chilled.

If you like the tea scent of roses in your garden then this will definitely be a winner. It’s as subtle and close as garden roses but every now and then I get a luscious, rich, fruity, red rose waft that’s just overblown at dawn and I’ve come across it as all dew has dissipated. Considering the extensive note list Rubis Rosé is surprisingly simple at first sniff. It ages greener and dryer, becoming more woody and leafy. The teas become more prominent too. Is this a rose chypre? is a question I have asked myself more than once on the journey.



Personally I have a plethora of rose scents here and the ones I reach for most are the heavier, denser and more swampy or oudh-ish like Midnight Oud by JHaG, original Agent Provocateur, Mohur by Neela Vermeire Creations or Ballets Rouges by Olympic Orchids. If these babies scare the shit out of you then Rubis Rosé could be a perfect rose for you.

Further reading: Colognoisseur and EauMG
DSH Perfumes has samples from $6

How do you like your roses? Radiant or swampy?
Portia xx

DSH Perfumes News


Post by Portia


Hey Crew,

DSH Perfumes Newsletter came through. It’s chock full of exciting pieces of interest and I’ve edited it to my favourite pieces. There are even more great gifting ideas than these on the site and you can join up for newsletters when you make a purchase. It’s important to keep the Independent perfumers alive because that’s where the magic is happening.

I want to make very clear that I adore Dawn but we have no affiliation other than my profound respect for her & her work. This is not a paid ad, I just want to share the exciting news and the fabulous DISCOUNT CODE.



DSH Perfumes News

December 2016

DSH Perfumes & The Essense Studio annual THANK YOU SALE.
20% off from now through January 9 2017 with code: thanks2016 

New DSH Perfumes Website is here!

Announcing the launch of a brand new DSH Perfumes site that has been completely overhauled to make it simpler to see everything they do and offer, as well as navigate. Amazing features like a “First Time Shoppers Guide” to get you started, a new customized sampler set, the “Find your Essense” discovery set, where you give details about your preferences and DSH Crew select the best fits for you, and last but not least, a “voile” version of most fragrance designs to send products abroad with international ordering*. Woo Hoo!

HOLIDAY GIFT with purchase till December 30 2016
With every purchase of $100 or more receive a complimentary 10ml spray of DSH most popular fragrance, Special Formula X.


 20161207_170223_resizedDawn & Mary from DSH Perfumes waving Happy Holidays!!

DSH Perfumes Holiday fragrance for 2016

Dark Moon

At the darkest times we need solace; comfort and warmth are paramount. The Dark Moon signals a new beginning…
For this Holiday fragrance, we chose an unusual balance of gourmand and chypre elements


Vanilla Chantilly:

The softest, most delicate vanilla skin scent with a hint of spice and chantilly cream… for when you just want a light and creamy veil of scent.

Axis Mundi:

A meditative incense design filled with resinous notes and a deep, smoky background. Perfectly unisex.
As the title states, the Axis Mundi is the cosmic center of the world; the link between Heaven and Earth.


 NEW DSH Perfumes:

Souvenir de Malmaison;

a new twist on a romantic classic where spicy carnation and rose meet in an ambery, wood fragrance.

A famous rose was plucked then cultivated from Chateau de Malmaison; residence of famous lovers, Napoleon and Josephine Bonaparte. A famous fragrance style of the early 19th Century, Malmaison is the spicy floriental style based on carnation, rose, spices, woods, and musk. .


(pronounced : On ee Ka) is ancient, mythic, and esoteric. It’s an aromatic that scholars merely speculate as to what it is. Some say a mollusc, others say benzoin, and yet others say labdanum. For our Onycha fragrance, we’ve used them all…and then some. A holy aromatic from antiquity used in the sacred incense of Solomon’s Temple.
What came from this inspiration is something smoky, rich, divine, and with a fascinating lilt that gives a clue to it’s oceanic origins.
A woody, creamy, rich, GOLDEN, incense oriental fragrance with subtle oceanic brine and animalic nuances in background.

Go check out the DHS Perfumes new website, it’s gorgeous and sleek.

I hope there’s something here for you. My favourite Christmas scent is Ma Folie de Noel (My Christmas Folly; Holiday no.6) by DSH Perfumes which is still available to buy. What’s yours?
Portia xx

NEW! Chinchilla by Dawn Spencer Hurwitz for DSH Perfumes 2016


Post by Portia


Hey there APJ Fumies,

Recently I got the DSH Perfumes Chroma Collection Sample Set and with it Dawn sent a sneaky extra of her newest baby Chinchilla. Are you ready to have your presumptions about fragrance challenged? Dawn has used honey in the most flagrantly animal composition I’ve smelled in ages.

Chinchilla by DSH Perfumes 2016

Chinchilla by Dawn Spencer Hurwitz

chinchilla-dsh-perfumesDSH Perfumes

Fragrantica gives these featured accords:
Hyrax, ambrette (musk mallow), bergamot, vetiver, oakmoss, carnation, castoreum, rose de mai, cinnamon, civet, beeswax, gardenia, honey, musk, nard himalayan (jatamansi), tonka bean, white pepper

WHOOSH! Sweetest, amberish, animal, urinous, caramelised sugar, thick, glutinous, honeyed. The first few minutes of Chinchilla areas outrageously powerful. If the upper echelons were wearing something this over the top then they are animals making their territory, social X-Rays who need to smell like greed, power and hunger, people who want to put the frenemy off guard by smelling like a carnivorous beast. The first 15-20 minutes are so disconcerting and then suddenly everything blends and softens.

The change is remarkable because what was vaguely disturbing has now become plush and luscious. Still honey/animal sweet but now a little breathy and I can imagine this being the cuddly goodbye of a society mum going out for the night in her dress, fur, make-up, sparkling diamonds and hair French rolled. When she is perfected and ready to leave the house a triple spritz of perfume for her and a squishy hug and lipstick flavoured kiss for the kids. My Mum & Dad were never a super socialite couple but they had their fair share of grand evenings and events, especially around Dad’s Paralympics and Mum’s golf and I remember that last fragrant blonde mink tickle as she hugged and kissed me goodbye and my pyjamas smelling of Mum’s fragrance as I went to sleep.


From DSH PerfumesAt the Grand Hotel, where the elite and gorgeously tailored meet for soirees, dancing parties, and other hedonistic (and luxurious) meetings, the elegant always wear their chinchilla.   Dreamily soft, sensuously cozy, and yet so chic; only the finest would do.
Our vintage-inspired Chinchilla is as sexy as the name implies, and imbues the wearer with the scent of warm skin, fur, and a cozy honey-musk animalic.    Go ahead…wrap yourself up in Chinchilla.

Recently I told Scented Hound that I keep imagining some top-flight male exec wearing it to work and leaving a steaming trail of broken hearts in his wake every day. It would definitely shake things up around the office.

Further reading: EauMG and Scented Hound
DSH Perfumes has Chinchilla starting at $6

INTERNATIONAL SHIPPING: Via Dawn: The new site is up AND that it is open to international shipping. 
We now offer voile formulations (same concentrations at the alcohol versions, just in IPM which isn’t flammable so we can ship it). The shipping is a flat rate of $55 **HOWEVER** if you are just getting small things or samples we will refund the rate to what it actually costs. It was the only way we could accommodate the international shipping.

Via rosarita313:  Dawn is having a sale through January 9, the code thanks2016 gets you 20% off the entire website.

Do you like the sound of Chinchilla?
Portia xx

Celadon: A Velvet Green by Dawn Spencer Hurwitz for DSH Perfumes 2007


Post by Portia


Hey Hey APJ,

It’s no secret that my favourite colour is green and for Dawn to have chosen Celadon, a colour I’ve always associated with the inside of our family home through the 1990s, seemed so coincidental that I was immediately drawn to it. Here’s an edited version of the sites take on The Chroma Collection: Created through a synesthetic approach, this series explores distinct “artist colors” (color pigments or paint that an artist would buy for their work) and a rather obscure textile color (that was all the rage with the 17th Century Paris – Versailles crowd). The CHROMA Collection was a top 5 Finalist for the 2015 Sadakichi (Experimental Use of Scent) Award given by the Institute for Art and Olfaction.

Celadon: A Velvet Green by DSH Perfumes 2007

Celadon: A Velvet Green by Dawn Spencer Hurwitz

The Chroma Collection

celadon-a-velvet-green-dsh-perfumesDSH Perfumes

DSH Perfumes gives these featured accords:
Balsam Fir, Clover Leaf, Cucumber, Green Grass, Hay Absolute, Liatrix, Lime Peel, Narcissus Absolute, Orris, Orris Root, Tonka Bean, Violet Leaf Absolute

A soft focus green fragrance that is refreshing, smooth as the pale green pottery it’s named for, delicious as freshly laundered sheets and as comfortable as your favourite hoodie/jumper. A barely there whisper of spring that sings around you as ethereal as air, yet you are quite fragrant. I also smell some very low level ripe humanity down the back end of Celadon and I’m not sure where it comes from, maybe the Liatrix whose scent profile is said to run like tobacco, hay, coumarin and the narcissus absolute?

Dawn has a way with green fragrances, she works from Celadon which feels like the smoothest, lightest touch of green, like cutting hydrangea heads for the house to Giverny In Bloom which basically blasts the back of your head off with florists air-conditioned fridges.

Celadon is prim, elegant and refined. Imagine arriving at CHANEL No 19 after the top notes have burned off but before the oakmoss dry down appears.



From Wikipedia: Celadon is a term for ceramics denoting both wares glazed in the jade green celadon color, also known as greenware (the term specialists tend to use) and a type of transparent glaze, often with small cracks, that was first used on greenware, but later used on other porcelains.

Further reading: Colognoisseur and Fragrant Journey
DSH Perfumes starts at $6

Could you imagine yourself in the softest Eau de Nil green fragrance?
Portia xxx

DSH Perfumes: Fleuriste and Deco Diamonds


Post by Portia


Hey Fumie family,

This was supposed to be a post about DSH Perfumes newest release Chinchilla. It’s a fabulous reimagining of the grand palace hotel style clientele’s fragrances. Sexy, cozy and full. I’ve been wearing my sample on & off over the week and it’s gorgeous, there was exactly enough left to do my review but do you think I can find the bloody sample? NO! GRRR! Hopefully it will turn up and I can finish my review another time……

So, I have had these two babies in mind to review. They are not Dawn’s newest but they are definitely worth a sniff.

ALSO….. Dawn wrote me: I’ve also been working on a new website overhaul for months and it’s now ramping up as I want to have it complete by the end of October if at all possible.)  So my Autumn launches are coming a bit late while I work on the site stuff, too.  With the new site, though, international order will be possible for almost all of the scents ( in voile format). Woo hoo! Anyway, Chinchilla, Axis Mundi, and Souvenir de Malmaison are all coming…..

DSH Perfumes: Fleuriste 2015

fleuriste-dsh_perfumesDSH Perfumes

Fragrantica gives these featured accords:
Bergamot, carnation, jasmine, green leaves, spicy notes, ambergris

Sharp green broken leaves with a spicy clove-heavy carnation opens Fleuriste. The broken leaves are mixed with fresh cut twiggy ends of branches, it’s that particular green smell of cutting camellias for the house, bitter and dry like the first sip of cold, unsugared black tea. If you like your fragrances super green, if CHANEL No 19 feels like a soft pussy and Futur by Robert Piguet smells too pretty then this could be the green for you.

Fleuriste is a dry, dark green that only slowly softens and expands during its late heart and through the dry down. Never losing it’s crisp cool spiciness but softening and yielding to the warmth of your skin it becomes more approachable and even at the last gasp cozy.  Fleuriste is a joy to wear and so far removed from anything available in stores, dawn constantly reminds me why we need independent perfumers, this is where the fun is in fragrance nowadays.

DSH Perfumes: Deco Diamonds 2014

deco-diamonds-dsh-perfumesDSH Perfumes

Fragrantica gives these featured accords:
Hyrax, aldehydes, ambergris, Australian sandalwood, oakmoss, civet, galbanum, gardenia, jasmine, honeysuckle, neroli, lily-of-the-valley, peach, jasmine sambac, tuberose

Aldehydes and galbanum create a plush and creamy opening that smells rich, warm and thick. The white flowers sparkle around the perimeter softly until the completely engulf the green. I am reminded of vintage VC&A First parfum in Deco Diamonds thrilling intensity. Underneath the glamorous shimmering is a resting big cat, the Cartier panther.

Through the heart Deco Diamonds becomes sheer and radiant, still fully fragrant but there is air between the notes, they become filled with luminous light that lifts the whole scent. I can’t pick notes at this point, it’s a creamy white floral but diffuse, like smelling the dry down of some of the big 1980s blockbuster chypre perfumes the next morning on a scarf. A whisper of luxurious living, magic.

DSH Perfumes has both these beauties from $6

Which one sounds like something you might like to try?
Portia xx

Portia’s Fragrant Week 24 – 30 July 2016


Post by Portia


Hi there Frag Fiends,

Some of mates have been doing weekly wrap up shots of their fragrances. I loved the idea but kept forgetting to do it. Last week I put a box in my office and every time I spritzed something it went into the box. It was fun to watch the bottles and boxes pile up in there.

Portia’s Fragrant Week 24 – 30 July 2016

Portia's Fragrant Week 24 - 30 July 2016


Yes, this is 7 days of fragrant wear for me. I think/hope I got them all. There were a couple of samples that I finished and threw away while not thinking, oops. (Bloody forgot Aesthete by Le Galion and Infini by Caron)

So from top to bottom 4 rows, left to right.

Miss Dior vintage parfum by DIOR: Pretty floral, furry dry down. Why did they have to change it? GRRR

Mohur by Neela Vermeire Creations: One of my all time faves. India meets Europe in a temple rose garden.

Exultat by Maria Candida Gentile: Incense and woods, one of the most comfortable incense bombs ever.

Epice Marine by Hermès: The modern aquatic, lifted by spices and that sheer oily JCE signature.

Aqua Allegoria Lys Soleia by Guerlain: Lily and cool white flowers with a touch of coconut cream. Tropical yet elegant.

Midnight Oud by Juliette Has A Gun: Rose & oudh, smells great, lasts for the whole day, won’t break the bank.

Coco vintage parfum by CHANEL: Coco, is Coco, is Coco. Heavenly oriental, so spicy and full.

Fantasia de Fleurs by Creed: Sweet, jammy roses and marmalade. YUM!

Giverny In Bloom by DSH Perfumes: Put your head in a florists fridge while wearing a heavily galbanum fragrance and you will smell Giverny In Bloom.

LouLou by Cacharel: BOOM! LouLou is like wearing a technicolour shirt that glitters and shimmers. Careful of she’ll wear you out.

Tweed by Taylor of London: MEMORIES!!! Mum. Back then it was Tweed by Lentheric.

Truth or dare by Madonna: Yes. This is my current favourite big white floral. So good and practically free.

Amazone vintage by Hermès: Oakmoss and a little bit of other stuff. Furry and genteel.

What did you wear last week?
Portia x