DSH Perfumes: Sienna by Dawn Spencer Hurwitz

Hey there Perfume Posse, Dawn Spencer Hurwitz of DSH Perfumes is a very special Indie Perfumer. You may have noticed I do love the Independents. They have more scope, less restrictions, are free to dream and express their fragrant selves to the limits of their potential. While I’m sure they test their creations on friends and fans there are no boardrooms filled with tweens and twenty somethings whose every word is hung upon and who can make or break a frag before it even reaches the public domain.

DSH Perfumes: Sienna by Dawn Spencer Hurwitz

Sienna DSH Perfumes FragranticaPhoto Stolen Fragrantica

Fragrantica gives these featured accords:
Top: Cinnamon leaf, curry leaf, pink pepper
Heart: Basmati, cinnamon bark, honey, white oak
Base: Civet, labdanum, leather, peru balm, tolu balm

Spicy, green, like a Bouquet Garni about to go into the soup pot. Gourmand but not sweet in the sugar or bakery sense, here we have delicious food from a whole world filled with magical flavours. I am surprised mostly that Bay Leaf is not mentioned in the notes because that is exactly how Sienna opens on my skin. It’s sharp and green and herbaceous with a very fizzy pink pepper and the opening lasts for a while happily before smoothing out.

Sienna DSH Perfumes Curry Leaf Cliff FlickrPhoto Stolen Flickr

Then the cinnamon comes through, tangy, sweet and spicy, and potent. Only slightly sofdtened by the honey and I really don’t get the basmarti sadly because I think it smells so good when it’s cooking. Even after 3 or 4 hours I get this wonderful cinnamon & bay fragrance and at this point the leather makes its appearance, a soft new leather, fresh from the store in a jacket or couch with the softest hint of resins. Really it could be inside a Chinese or Indian spice store. A melange of beautiful fragrances all working together towards a magical scent that is Sienna and no other.

Here is fragrance made for sheer olfactory pleasure, a quiet, introverted pleasure that will waft up to surprise you throughout its excellent wear time. Sienna will also change the air a little behind you creating an unusual sillage that is most enticing. After I sprayed today I left the room to make a cuppa and on my return the room smelled gorgeous, it made me instantly check to see if it was Sienna, it was.

Sienna DSH Perfumes orange-sunset CoCloudsPhoto Stolen CoClouds

Sienna wears very loud for about 20 minutes before it sinks gracefully into my skin and becomes a soft spicy wash. Noticeable if you look for it or are close enough to sniff but soft enough that I think it could be an excellent day to day scent, no one will be skunked by Sienna once it settles. You will be fragrant but not in your face.

DSH Perfumes has EdP from $5/.5ml and Body Lotion

Have you spent any time with DSH Perfumes? Do you have a favourite?
Portia xx

  • Amber says:

    I just received my first order of DSH samples, very exciting! However just found out baby no 4 is on the way and nausea is messing with my sense of smell!! even through that greenish haze I am enjoying Padme Lotus, a gorgeous summer floral- normally anything “aquatic” sends me screaming in the other direction but this is not that kind of aquatic…really gorgeous, def. getting for next spring/summer/fall. (Blood orange, neroli, tagetes, rose, osmanthus, pink lotus, sandalwood, vetiver, violet leaf absolute…)
    I am waiting for a nice pacific northwestern rainy day to test memory and desire no 1, sounds purr-fect for that weather. (Chypre with oakmoss! Orris! Apple blossom! Sumi Ink accord! Oooooh!)
    Also waiting for cooler weather to try La Reine des Fleurs. (Rose, peach, balsamic-vanilla drydown, num, num!)
    Hoping Les Petites might be something I can wear while breastfeeding and not overwhelm bebe.
    Inner Sanctum sounds lovely rosarita,
    Anyone tried Dirty Rose or Minuit? Both sound really intriguing. Okay, gotta go feed the minions, ta ta!

    • Portia says:

      WOW! Sounds like you got an excellent set Amber.
      Maybe wear your frags behind your neck and at lower back while breast feeding, It will be still noticeable for you but mild for baby.
      Having said that I was born in the late 1960s and perfume was definitely worn strong around here.
      Portia x

      • Amber says:

        Hi Portia, thank you! That is an excellent suggestion re where to wear perfumes on the body, I will definitely give it a go. I was born in the 1970’s in Oz and remember perfume wearing of the era, ah, good memories! If I could commission Dawn to make something I would ask her to re create the original Maja, or a tribute to it- my mum wore it and I have the soaps in my clothing drawers. I think she’d make a killing, there’s a lot of fans out there…

  • SamanthaL. says:

    I love Lumiere…it’s gorgeous…very nutmeggy and spicy. I wanted to love Halloween it’s my favorite holiday and time of year period, and thought it would be perfect given the notes. Soooo, I bought a bottle unsniffed……not my best purchase! It’s not bad, just not for me! I keep holding on to it though in the hope it grabs me one day!

    • Portia says:

      Find someone that you see regularly SamanthaL and gift it to them. They will wear it often when you see them and you’ll get to smell it a lot more often that way.
      Portia xx

  • FeralJasmine says:

    I’m increasingly a fangirl of DSH, but haven’t tried this one. My only problem with the line as a whole is that they tend to wear so close to the skin that, on my dry skin, they can disappear. I wish that many of them were a touch louder, so I will certainly try this one. I love Pink Gardenia, a soft and creamy realistic gardenia, love the fascinating Cimabue with its strong cardamom note, love the delightful Euphorisme d’Opium, vintage Opium’s polite little sister who can accompany you to the office without getting all inappropriate and lounging across your cute colleague’s desk.
    I am delighted to see the DSH line get some public love. There are treasures in it.

    • Portia says:

      Hi FeralJasmine,
      I have Cimabue here too. It doesn’t see as much skin as it should. After the move I will get it back out and have a few wears. I love it when I wear it.
      I also have a few of the DSH oils, they are a bit louder and you can apply more lavishly
      Portia xx

  • rosarita says:

    Lovely review, Portia, Dawn is such a prolific perfumer that I haven’t tried nearly as many of her perfumes as I would like, but I love Inner Sanctum. It’s the best incense rose I’ve ever smelled and is a winter staple. It’s chilly here right now, maybe I’ll wear a dab today.

    • Portia says:

      Hi there Rosarita,
      Being prolific is a double edged sword. Yes it means more people will like at least one of your frags but it also feels quite daunting when you try and know a house. If you’ve found something that sings to you in a house though often there are more. It’s something in their bases.
      Portia x

  • Julie L says:

    I’ve not had the opportunity to try any of DSH but I’ve heard they are lovely! And this one sounds right up my alley! Cinnamon, tolu, and honey….MMM!!!

  • dgambas says:

    I’m going to explore Scent of Hope and Cannabis Culture Collection (four fragrances) these days. First sniffs tell me that all of them are gorgeous perfumes (as everything I’ve tried from DSH perfumes). Scent of Hope is much more than a great reconstruction of Jacques Fath’s Iris Gris, a stunning perfume!