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Private Blends

Discussion in 'The Art of Traditional Perfumery' started by IM_AU, Jun 4, 2017.

  1. IM_AU

    IM_AU Oud Fan

    Hi All,
    Been in an Oud hobby for a while now, where the search is always on for something extraordinary and beautiful, I've acquired several masterpieces that I feel myself very fortunate to own. Since all this time I've a very special place for Blends that are pure, harmonious, deep and beautiful that can make oneself shine deep inside.
    There is no secret that I am admirer of AlShareef's blends as his creations matches my personal taste. This year I thought to make my hobby to next level and to get something very special and unique.
    I feel myself very fortunate to own something like this and my purpose of writing this thread is first of all to share my happiness with my forum friends (as I know they all are qualified to appreciate rather than someone who doesn't know the intricacies) plus letting the forum friends know some out of the box solutions.
    Since this project was an expensive affair (4 Toolas in total i.e. 16 quarter Toola bottles) and I did not wanted to have any compromises, I asked 'master of the skills' to take up my project and give me three unmatched products and....... AlShareef took this job from me.
    First Blend: FAARIS
    This blend contains Kashmiri Musk (Many Thanks to Faheem for providing me the opportunity to get some great stuff). Since Kashmiri Musk is already rare I told AlShareef that my first requirement is an uncompromised solution where you should only take best companions for this expensive and rare Kashmiri Musk. Second requirement was to get three best aspects/profiles in my blend, Malaysian, Cambodian and Indian.
    This Blend was made using AlShareef II (Malaysian) + Lyth (Cambodian) + Hudhayl (Indian) + Al Malek Al Malayzi (this is a private released Malaysian) + Touch of Taifi and Vintage Ambergris. Now people who have experience with any of these mentioned fragrances would have no difficulty in imagining the class that this blend is carrying. I think I do not need to say more about the blend as the ingredients that went in the blend can easily tell the quality and experience of the product.
    As for the notes, it will evolve overtime due to Musk presence, but at the moment it is: Woody powder Ambergris, animalic Rose and Smooky wood.

    Second Blend: Al-Ghazaal
    This is very interesting Siberian Musk Blend, it contains the element that really makes this an out of the box solution. In this blend I've provided AlShareef with my own stock that I've collected in past years. This blend is also Musk heavy and some very good quality Musk grains went in the blend.
    1. The blend base is from Manek (Zakir's Indian Oud)
    2. On top of it there is something very unique... and it is Royal Chen Xiang (Burmese Oud from Agar Aura) + Ketenangan (Borneo from Agar Aura)
    3. Then there was mix of Sandal Wood oils, Indian Sandal and Australian double distilled Sandal
    4. Plus there was aged civet, touch of Taifi rose and other finishing ingredients in small quantities.
    Now just like Faaris, people on the forum who had a chance to experience the above mentioned products would not need any explanation about quality and sheer beauty of the ingredients used in the blend.

    It will take time for this blend to evolve fully and reveal it's beauty, but the notes are: a whiff of lightly fermented Apples, Rose petals, creamy spicy woods and Muskiness.

    Third Blend: Maaha
    This is a Rose and Oudh blend that got done for times when I need a lot of freshness, lightness, projection and rosiness around me. The base of this blend is Zakir's Manek (Indian Oud) + Taifi Rose from AlShareef + Bulgarian Rose Otto and Absolute + Sandal.
    This is an extremely refreshing and beautiful fragrance that can impress almost everyone. Notes are: Rose, Floral, Lightly fermented Apples, soft woods.

    Well already wrote a lot and I hope you guys have enjoyed reading it. There is obviously a lot of stock with me now which I hope I can use with bit more liberty :). I've kept FAARIS and AL-GHAZAAL for ageing now since both of these blends are Musk heavy (as you can see in the photo) they will require sometime to properly age.

    Thank You.
    Last edited: Jun 4, 2017
  2. F4R1d0uX

    F4R1d0uX Resident Artisan

    Mashah Allah !
    Congratulations brother very nice collection !
    Mandeel AlMandeel likes this.
  3. AbasFrag

    AbasFrag Oud Burner

    Wow masha'Allah absolutely stunning!!

    Congratulations bro I bet you have something unique!!:Inlove::Thumbsup:
    Mandeel AlMandeel likes this.
  4. Oudamberlove

    Oudamberlove Member

    The sheer quantity is impressive :thumbsup:

    It takes time for the separate ingredients to totally blend together and display the unified scent. So in that regard, aging is key.
    You can at least experience them at different stages of this process since you have several bottles :Inlove:

    I made a very simple mix of a little Ward Al Ta'ifi with some Oud Zachariyya. In just 2 weeks there was a big difference in how they came together:Geek:
    Mandeel AlMandeel likes this.
  5. Oh, I am so impressed! I was just about drooling reading the descriptions. The first one Faaris, sounds particularly appealing to me. Just wonderful...
    Mandeel AlMandeel likes this.
  6. Habz786

    Habz786 Resident Artisan & Forum Co-Founder

    Congratulations on creating these blends it seems lots of thought and expertise have gone into making them. ASO do create magical blends and from all the blends i have smelt theirs are above the rest. They all sound interesting but Faaris sounds the most appealing to me, time will tell as they age and the musk settles. Which one do you prefer currently and why?
  7. IM_AU

    IM_AU Oud Fan

    JazakaALLAH Khair and Thank You for your responses

    @Habz786 Yes this was indeed a time taking process where a proper thought process went in to create something like this and credit goes to AlShareef for creating these pieces of art.
    I knew that a lot of people will get excited reading about the description of FAARIS - by the way FAARIS, which is an Arabic word, means a strong rider. The name is a reflection of product, we wanted to have a strong, deep and rich fragrance with complex personality, that was the idea behind creation of this fragrance. Now this is something very interesting that I should share, remember in one of the thread AlShareef mentioned that he prefer to use dried grains in the blend because dried grains gives the best estimation of how product will emerge after ageing. Based on his experience he used different ratios of each ingredient in the blend where after ageing each ingredient should shine and seamlessly harmonise with other ingredients to give this product an amazing experience. At the moment I am not properly testing this product as I am giving time to Mahaa blend to understand and adjust with the perfume, I usually give bit of a time to understand the fragrance before jump to another one. At this stage in FAARIS I can feel rawness of the product, I like heavier fragrances and FAARIS is on heavier side and I am expecting this product to become a great masterpiece when Musk brings up all the goodness of the classic ingredients together. The Kashmiri Musk was of a good quality, Oils that are used are of a premium quality, bonded together with vintage Ambergris and touch of Taif'i rose plus created by the hands of master of trade... it's no-brainer why this blend was an immediate eye catcher.

    Ghazaal Blend on the other hand is bit over shadowed by the FAARIS, but I am expecting a lot from this blend. Ghazaal means Four leg Antelope, the name is given based on the sheer quality and quantity of Siberian grains that went into the mix. It feels raw at this stage as it is freshly blended and will evolve over time. I feel this blend more in line with Saqr as of now. Remember this products contains a fantastic base of Manek (heavy), RCX (Strong) and Ketenangan (Clean) all these bonded with very good quality of Sandal wood oils (there is obviously a reason why both Indian and Australian double distilled oils were used) and then other small quantities of high quality ingredients to give a finish. I am expecting that the quantity of Musk used will turn this blend into something like rich, little heavy, musky, vibrant, bit animalic and woodier... but time will inshaALLAH tell us. I am attaching a photo for you to see the quantity Musk that is used in the blend.

    WhatsApp Image 2017-06-05 at 9.48.47 AM.jpeg

    It is hard to tell the favourite now, and this is where you see the expertise of the perfumer, all three blends I've got are completely different. Although made at the same time but it seems like each blend was made using a blank canvas where every aspect of perfumery was reset to create a different experience for the wearer.
    Last edited: Jun 5, 2017
  8. Al Shareef Oudh

    Al Shareef Oudh Resident Artisan

    @IM_AU nearly a year since these beauties were crafted, how is your relationship with them ?
  9. IM_AU

    IM_AU Oud Fan

    This thread still exist :)... wow Thanks for reminding @Al Shareef Oudh... Yes it's been a long time since this thread was created and then got buried with new exciting stuff.
    I've been out of Oudh hobby due to my own personal engagements but I think one of the main reason I am not actively looking for new stuff is because I think I found sort of apex of my hobby in shape of these blends. The expense I did a year a go was well worth it, these blends are maturing well as of now. I have kept them in a dark place and due to mostly cold weather here in Melbourne the process of maceration is bit slow but I am patiently waiting. Development of fragrance is taking shape but still a long way to go. In summary Al-Ghazaal has become Very Bright and instant appeal, FAARIS on the other hand is something on its own, certainly a gem for exquisite fragrance hunter.
    I actually got requests for samples which I wasn't able to make it as I think it wasn't right to split the bottles which are in perfect proportion also I am not confident to do it properly... but I did sent the sample to one of my good friend, may be if he likes he can share his experience.
    Thank You Al Shareef for following up, really appreciate it.
  10. Al Shareef Oudh

    Al Shareef Oudh Resident Artisan

    The experience of holding a blend from inception and accompanying it through the different phases develops a very intimate relationship between the beholder and the fragrance. It is much more than simply studying a scent, it is the difference of visiting a city and living in a city that you call home.

    look forward to more insights from your journey.
    riviera274 and Habz786 like this.
  11. IM_AU

    IM_AU Oud Fan

    It's nearing two years since the musk is macerating in the bottles... I've not been actively buying for quite sometime now, however saw that many friends on the forum have actually started working with Musk in the blends. I thought to share my experience in this regard about the process and what to expect.
    I've opened the bottle of Ghazaal after few months and it looks like the fragrance just jumped out of the bottle... it significantly got stronger in terms of projection... this is the first thing I noticed
    The little top layer of Musk is now turned into a white cloudy substance... rest of the Musk is still grainy and I think it will still take couple of years for the complete maceration to complete.... specially considering amount of Musk in the bottle. I am attaching below photo (it's hard to capture the cloudy substance) for reference... look at the blue circle in both photos

    ghazaal 1.PNG

    ghazaal 2.PNG

    The final destination for these blend is to have musk macerated like this (this is a different bottle I've)... the white substance is musk which is fully macerated

    ghazaal 3.PNG

    Now what to expect with these maceration and affect on the fragrance? I am listing my experience just for educational purposes.

    • Musk role in the blend is like a fixative/combiner/enhancer for the blend... so if the blend is balanced then Musk will harmonize it and make all ingredients sing a unique complete song... if you know what I mean.
    • Based on the quantity of Musk I think blend will become more heavier in terms of texture
    • Will it add any distinct animalic smell to the blend? I don't think at this stage
    • There is now one thing very obvious... there is nothing like sandalwood, oud and rose that you can pick up straight... it has now become a complete package in terms of experience and I guess Musk and time both played a role in this
    • Based on what I can see, Musk is not going to make your blend black... if you look at the last photo of fully macerated bottle, musk is converted into a fat like cloudy substance therefore I see no chance of musk making the oil black. I am mentioning this because most of the Musk oils that I have seen are shown as black to emphasize the muskiness or musk strength. May be there is a formula where the perfumer can process musk in such a way that turns the oil black? I am not sure about this at all

    Maceration is a lengthy wait... therefore will require patience.

    Well...on the other hand Faaris is now displaying spices like cardamon, nutmeg etc... plus the smokiness that every oud lover crave for. It's getting there but as the bottle is half full of Musk therefore it will take longer. As I said in my another post... I am still of the opinion that faaris can be used (after complete maceration) as a Master bottle to beautify variety of different oud profiles or blends.

    Thanks for reading.

    Souhayl, Tarik and F4R1d0uX like this.
  12. Qayyum Shaikh

    Qayyum Shaikh Whats this Oud About?

    I wish i could sniff these beauties !!!
    Bilal likes this.

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