The first Slumberhouse fragrance I feel like discussing is Sova (2012). The first interesting thing to note about Sova is that a full note listing appears to have been given. I had read that Josh does not like giving out note listings, so I am not sure what prompted the change this time. My speculation is that because of the very unusual raw materials used, he wanted to share exactly what he was putting into this one. I would also speculate that this fragrance took considerable time and experimentation to create.
If you go through the given notes, 6 of them are highly unusual. Those would be: hops; poplar bud; genet; araucaria; melilot; cassie. I have never smelled these in fragrance before, and also had to do a search to find out what they even were. Hops of course is commonly found in beer, but when trying to understand the valerian rust reference I found out that hops and valerian are herbs commonly mixed together to promote relaxation and aid in sleeping. Poplar Bud scent profile is “a very complex and tenacious but soft aroma of apricots and prunes, and the fruity-floral osmanthus. Background notes include precious wood and leather.” Genet (broom): Sweet, honey/hay-like aroma, with herbal tea and tobacco notes. Araucaria is a type of evergreen coniferous tree mostly found in France. Melilot also know as sweet clover naturally contains the chemical coumarin which has the smell of hay, cut grass, and vanilla. Cassie is a flower that smells green, slightly sweet, with hints of powdery resinous undertones
The review is turning out be more of a botany lesson, but I think it helps in the understanding of this fragrance. So what does Sova smell like? First I will use some descriptors: tea, tobacco, hay, honey, dried grass, vanilla, resins, cocoa powder, hints of wood and leather. For me, this reminds me of the smell of a specialty tea shop. One that sells fine herbal tea blends. A black tea that has been blended with honey, vanilla bean, and other dried herbs.
Certain comparisons could be made with Tom Ford Tobacco Vanille, L’Artisan Tea for Two, or Guerlain Tonka Imperial. Those fragrances are sometimes considered gourmand. With Sova I struggle to quite categorize it. You can certainly call it a gourmand fragrance, but I think it leans more heavily on the tea, tobacco, hay, dried herbs, and leathery facets; rather than the sweetness. I do not care for most sweet fragrances, but this one doesn’t give me a toothache.
I enjoy the smell of this fragrance quite a lot. I especially appreciate the time that Sova undoubtedly took to create. Sourcing and experimenting with these ingredients must have been a long and tedious process. My only real critique is that I have been enjoying some of the other Slumberhouse scents even more.
Feel free to leave any comments or questions that you have.