Sunday, 8 May 2011


Ormonde Terrace was probably one of the most fragrantly scented streets when Linda J Pilkington used her own home there as a perfume lab and created the Ormonde Jayne perfumes.  Since then she has come a long way changing her humble settings to that of the opulent Harrods Perfume Hall and her own two London boutiques with their striking black lacquered interiors.  However some things haven’t changed - each product is still created by Linda and the bottling and packaging is still by hand but now in her British workshop rather than in her home.

From this passion for perfumery and perfection, Linda was not content to just create her 12 luxurious fragrances, but wanted to ensure her customers discovered and went away with the right Ormonde Jayne fragrance for them. And so Perfume Portraits was created.

Perfume Portraits can take from a quick 5 minutes to a longer more leisurely 45 minutes depending on how many questions and how much time you have.

At the beginning she will ask a few questions such as: what other perfume brands you already love and which ones your hate, do you like soaking in the bath or prefer to shower, do you like scented candles, do you usually carry your perfume around with you, and are you looking for a perfume for a the evening, daytime or for the summer etc. 

Now you may ask how are these questions pertinent?  Well she keeps a profile for you ,so if your loved one decides to pop in to buy you a gift, she can not only recommend the right scent but also the right product.

The next stage is where Linda introduces you to the scents of individual raw ingredients in the form of oils and which can make an Ormonde Jayne perfume. Advising you not to think of them as an actual perfume but to just concentrate on the smell and say whether you liked or didn’t like it.

After smelling about 15 of the 21 oils I’d only said I’d like two so far (vanilla and freesia).  Panicking, and wondering how she was going to find any perfume for me, never mind my perfect perfume, I toyed with the idea of saying I liked the next one.  Alas I couldn’t even smell anything. Luckily I came clean and Linda advised it was Ambroxan which you either could or couldn’t smell.  Relieved my sense of smell hadn’t totally packed in, I was just a bit sad that I wasn’t one of the perfume elite who could smell it.

After going through all the oils, Linda then chose three of her perfumes, spraying two on my arms and one on herself. We talked whilst they settled.  One I instantly loved (Ta’if) but the others were too intense. Although happy with my new favourite perfume and amazed that she found it so easily, I still kept smelling the other fragrance (Tolu) on my arm. Apparently Tolu does take a while to settle.  It definitely did take a while, but after a few hours, I was surprised to find I loved the smell – Super Perfumer Linda had done it again!

But as an impatient, want everything now, now, now kinda girl, the love at first smell Ta’if is the one for me. I loved its instant top notes of pink pepper, saffron and dates and still loved it as it settled down with the heart notes of rose oil, freesia, orange flower absolute and jasmine plus the lingering base notes of broom and amber.

I was delighted to see my new signature perfume was the one and only perfume that comes in the very luxurious  Gold Dust: here you can give your décolleté and shoulders a little light dusting of  real 24 carat gold powder ! Gold Dust is packaged in an elegant black lacquered handmade gold box which contains a very fluffy and feminine champagne coloured hand sewn French satin powder puff with marabou feather trim. 

The retail price of £400 for 15ml is not to be sneezed at (definitely don’t sneeze!) and is exclusive to Harrods.

I’m pleased to say the actual perfumes are much much cheaper at £70 for a 50ml Eau de Parfum.

Ormonde Jayne’s flagship boutique is at 12 The Royal Arcade and her new and larger store at 192 Pavillion Rd just off Sloane Square.  For more information check out the website :

By Karen Grace
Personal Shopper & Image Consultant for Frumpy to Funky 

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