SOTD: Ormonde Jayne Seraphim (for 20ltd)

Perfume-hobbyists like me often become obsessed with a house or a perfumer. In fact, we frequently become fanatical about SEVERAL and try to buy everything that they've created. I feel this sort of fanfare for only three perfumers/houses: Ormonde Jayne, Jean Claude Elena and Patricia Nicolai. So, when I heard that there was a limited edition perfume made by Ormonde Jayne for 20ltd, I had to try it. Seraphim has not let me down!

Eventually, I bought some through someone. If you are on the trail of this beauty, send me a message and I'll email you my source. At the time, she was even potentially willing to sell me the bottle, which is a huge score since 20LTD agreed to let the owners of the bottles have unlimited refills.

According to their website, only 50 of the elegant bottles were made, and each bottle sold for $730 US dollars. I sort of have a hard time believing that, since I know a handful of people who own it (do I know where 10% of the bottles are? it's possible). I don't know them all personally, of course. Nathan Branch owns a bottle of Ormonde Jayne Seraphim, for example. I don't know him personally, but I love his blog and his photography. And notice that one commenter there also owns a bottle. Two people on MUA have commented that they own one too, plus the gal that was kind enough to sell me some of her stock.

But I digress. Onto my short, SOTD assessment:

1) Purchasing a decant of this one is cheating, but... who could afford to buy an unsniffed bottle at a cost of $730? And even if you could afford it, could you find it? Even in the nicest decant container, the juice is just too beautiful to be in such a simple bottle. It really deserves to be put on a pedestal in the classic OJ parfum bottle.

2) She's an elegant floral, but she's a touch fruity. I wash shocked that my initial impression was: rose and fruit. Which is strange, because there's no fruit in the notes (does bergamot count as fruit? I digress). Looking at the notes, I realize that it's the combination of the rose and violets that are creating this impression, with an almost wine-like accord which is soft and not bitter. I think that this wine-like accord is what's creating the impression of fruit for me.

3) She sparkles like gold flakes. Paired with the rose and wine aspects, there's an effect (apparently created by the ylang ylang) that could be visually represented by flakes of gold falling through liquid and catching the light: this note is certainly 'gold' in smell and very shiny.

SOTD Perfume Review: Ormonde Jayne Seraphim for 20LTD
Perfume House: Ormonde Jayne
Creator / Nose: Not really given; Linda Pilkington of OJ works frequently with Geza Schoen, but I don't know if he was involved.
Year: 2008
Classification: Floral
Perfume Notes: Rose, Rosewood, Violets, Iris, Coumarin, Ylang Ylang, Bergamot, Vanilla.
What you mostly smell: Rose, Violets, a slight wine effect, Ylang Ylang, not-too-sweet vanilla, wood and coumarin (which here smells a bit like safron to me, but maybe my nose is being tricked)
Lasting Power: Very good. It's parfum strength and wears close to the skin for your own personal enjoyment. I love my perfumes this way but sillage lovers may need to spray this expensive beauty rather than dab.
Similar to: I can't really think of anything similar to this. In some ways, it's clearly a cousin of Ormonde Jayne Ta'if. Because of the rose+violets effect, it makes me appreciate Parfums de Nicolai Violette in Love even more, though clearly ViL is very fruity with the addition of lime and rasberrys. They aren't really similar, but it's the closest "cheap thrill" that I can think of. Maybe if I layered ViL with Ta'if? Hm. That's worth trying for a fun layering experiment, but I don't think that it will turn out at all the same. Seraphim is incredibly unique. I think that this is the highest quality ylang ylang I've ever smelled.
Overall impression: A unique masterpiece!


Hi there! I'm a new OJ fan - and discovered Seraphim (and thus your blog) while browsing the web trying to find samples of the Four Corners of the Earth scents. I wanted to know if you are still willing to share your source for where you got the juice :) :) and if you've smelled any of the Four Corners line?

Thank you kindly!


Hi Emily! Thanks for your post!

I have some Ormonde Jayne Tsarina in the mail, making it's way across the pond to me as we speak. I'll take pictures and post when I get it next week. I ordered a travel bottle, so it won't be as pretty as the new bottles, but I am super excited about the juice.

I'll see if I can find the contact info for my source of Seraphim, and I'll report back.

Happy Monday!

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