To Dream, indie perfumer Laurie Erikson's (of Sonoma Scent Studio) latest release clearly poses as a violet fragrance and yet it is so much more that it can stand for many things: a woody floral for those who don't want too much of either declination; a balanced composition that explores minimal powdery elements alongside a soft, fuzzy smoothness and sweetened woods over the familiar ambience of viola odorata; a non makeup scent for men who want to venture into the realm. To Dream is quite enchanting, inducing daydreaming indeed, and at the same time supremely easy to pull of for both sexes, projecting on a pleasant hum at all times, no sharp points, but rather colourful accents, like an oil painting by a late 19th century artist.
To Dream features soft violet and rose with a base of heliotrope, tonka, amber, vanilla, frankincense essential oil (very lightly done), oakwood absolute, orris, cedar, sandalwood, and hints of cocoa, suede and moss. Even though Laurie had been working on violets before for her Lieu de Rêves (Place of Dreams), reviewed on these pages, the two compositions, sharing the violet-rose-heliotrope heart, soon depart. Lieu de Rêves has a childlike innocence and the hazy contours of flou stills of Louis Malle's Pretty Baby; a nascent sensuality which beckons you closer Bambi-eyed. To Dream is a bit more sophisticated and more unisex, with woodier aspects from French oakwood absolute which comes from wine barrels made of Quercus robur wood; Quercus is the Latin name for oak, i.e. these are oaky barrels, the kind that hold aging-simpatico dry, red wine).
Notes for Sonoma Scent Studio To Dream:
Violet, rose, heliotrope, cedar, amber, frankincense, oakwood absolute, vetiver, tonka, orris, vanilla, musk, sandalwood, oakmoss, subtle suede, cocoa, and aldehydes.
To Dream is available as parfum extrait spray 34ml for 80$ on the Sonoma Scent Studio site and IndieScents.
Related reading on Perfume Shrine: Sonoma Scent Studio fragrances, Violets in perfumery