L’Artisan Parfumeur Seville a l’Aube EDP Perfume Review

L'Artisan Seville a l'aube

I have a complicated relationship with L’Artisan Parfumeur Séville à L’aube that I’ll try not to bore you with but I feel it’s worth mentioning. I read “The Perfume Lover” a memoir by Denyse Beaulieu, the woman behind the blog Grain de Musc. I’m not reviewing the book, but the book is about the creation of this perfume. And being a memoir, it’s also about Denyse, her love of perfume and yes, her lovers.

My relationship with Séville à L’aube is complicated by the fact that I read the book before sampling the fragrance. The proto-perfume was described in detail. The inspiration was described in detail. L’Artisan Parfumeur’s website says:

Séville à l’Aube is the passionate story of a romance during the Holy Week, in the most captivating city of Andalusia. Told by a writer to master perfumer Bertrand Duchaufour, it awakened his senses and lead to the creation of this stunning soliflore, a sublime orange blossom, alive with contrasts.”

Before sampling, I already had an idea of what I thought this perfume “should” smell like. My expectations weren’t just high, but they were *my* expectations. I had created this perfume in my mind based on the description. When I tried this perfume in the summer of 2012 on a hot day in NYC, I was disappointed. It smelled like an even sweeter version of By Kilian Sweet Redemption. All I got was vanilla orange cream pop with Saturday morning cartoon breakfast cereal. It was cloying and sweet. And I was mad. This was not *my* Séville à L’aube.

In the fall of 2012, a friend of mine urged me to try this perfume again. “But, it’s so you!”, he said. And he nicely made me a generous decant which I tried on a cool, damp October day. During this wear, I picked up on the lavender and acrid incenses with a sweet orange blossom. During this wear, I realized that this is good. It smelled excellent on me. My friend was right.

The story becomes more complicated. During a move, the decant broke (just a few days after I received it). It saturated a Navajo chinle rug. It seems that the most potent/strongest perfumes are always the ones to break or leak! My tiny space was suffocating me with Séville à L’aube. To be fair, it wasn’t this perfume. Any perfume would have bothered me, but this made me not want to sample it again for a very long time.

Well, in 2014, I’ve decided to give this limited edition orange blossom another try.

Séville à L’aube opens with a spicy fruitiness from pink pepper and a lavender that reminds me of a pink variety of lavender. Séville à L’aube is sweet and acrid. And then it wears like a vanilla orange cream pop custard with a sharp lavender. The fragrance has bitter orange leaves that add a greenness but for the most part, this perfume is sweet. The heart is overflowing with indolic white florals paired with a balsamic yet sweet vanilla. The dry-down is a smoky incense powder, mostly benzoin, with a waxy vanilla.

Here’s the deal, I like my orange blossoms sweet. I always think of orange blossom as a “gourmand” note. I tend to prefer them as sweet as they can get. I know that this perfume is too sweet for many people, but I like my orange blossoms (and lavender) with vanilla.

I don’t think Séville à L’aube is “perfect”. The version-in-my-head had more vetiver (channeling Molinard Habanita) and my version had a drier vanilla. But, this isn’t my version; I’m being picky and unreasonable. The final version is a very Duchaufour-ish perfume that is rich and sweet yet acrid. If I didn’t have my personal expectations, I wouldn’t even be mentioning this! This is one of the issues with launching a perfume with such an intimate book.

Lili St. Cyr

Notes listed include lavender, pink pepper, lemon tree leaves, orange blossom, jasmine, magnolia, beeswax, incense, Benzoin Siam and Luiseiri lavender. Launch date 2012. PERFUMER – Bertrand Duchaufour

Give Séville à L’aube a try if you like sweet orange blossoms or want a “complex” vanilla. Or if you like perfumes like By Kilian Sweet Redemption, Jean Paul Gaultier Fleur de Male, Serge Lutens Fleurs d’Oranger, Tom Ford Neroli Portofino and/or Mugler Mirror Mirror Collection Dis Moi. I think this one is unisex but I guess because of the sweetness it could lean more feminine.

Projection and longevity are above average. This is a beast. One spray is more than enough.

The 3.4 oz bottle retails for $165 at Beautyhabit. Samples are also available for purchase. And it sometimes shows up at discounters like

Victoria’s FInal EauPINIONA really sweet orange blossom and vanilla with sharp lavender. I do think it’s a sexy perfume because I associate white flowers with “sexy”. And vanilla is a note that always gets me compliments, so the two together have to equal something sexy, right?

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*Sample obtained by me. Product pic from Fragrantica. Lili St. Cyr pic from Post contains affiliate links. Thanks!

5 thoughts on “L’Artisan Parfumeur Seville a l’Aube EDP Perfume Review

  1. I read Beaulieu’s book, too, and tried both this and Habanita, and I was sort of disappointed with both. Habanita goes so powdery on me which is disappointing because I love the main notes of vetiver and tobacco.

    1. I love Habanita so much. That was another reason I expected to fall madly in love with Seville a l’Aube too. Habanita goes powdery on me but in a good way if that makes sense. I will say that I have smelled it on others and frankly, it can be rather terrible. Like powdery “baby” instead of like powdery “glam”.

      1. Powdery is so tough! I just retried it last night after reading your post, and it seems to work so much better on my skin when it’s hot. I hadn’t thought about temperature with fragrance.

        1. Yes, it is.

          Some perfumes do so well in the heat that aren’t really “summery”. Like I love Tom Ford Sahara Noir in the heat but the notes seem very “wintery”. And of course, body heat plays a role too.

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