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Article: An Olfactory Ode to National Fragrance Week 2022

Bottle of STORIES Parfums with piles of the perfume ingredients

An Olfactory Ode to National Fragrance Week 2022

Open a bottle of your favourite perfume, raise your nose and join us as we toast a week-long celebration of scent in National Fragrance Week 2022.

An annual perfumery highlight, NFW is organised by The Fragrance Foundation UK, of which STORIES Parfums is a proud member. This non-profit body sets standards of excellence for the fragrance industry and has a fantastic line up of specialist events for National Fragrance Week 2022, from 21-27 March. Read more about you can get involved here.

This year's event celebrates seven facets of fragrance, one each day of this week. Let me walk you through each element from STORIES' perspective.

Day One: History

Scent was always something that connected me to who I am and all that matters to me.

Ireland has a rich heritage of storytelling and living here has shaped the stories of my life - and in turn, my Eau de Parfums. I am proud to have launched Northern Ireland's first ever fragrance house and see STORIES as embodying the entrepreneurial spirit and creativity of Ireland - an island of artists, musicians, and new ideas.

The scents of childhood, home and my environment inspired my sensory journey and helped to intuitively create my fragrance collection, from the use of time honoured traditional methods and ancient craftmanship to an appreciation of our planet and drive to sustain it.

It feels as though we have come a long way in such a short time since STORIES Parfums launched in 2018 - a few highlights from our journey to date...

  • Driving through Grasse on the French Riviera, where I began my olfactory journey, learning with the most incredible perfumer
  • Holding the first bottle of STORIES Parfums Eau de Parfum in my hand
  • Seeing the fragrances displayed on counters in some of my favourite local, global and UK stores, inc  Harvey Nichols, Fenwicks, Fortnum & Mason and Brown Thomas
  • Winning multiple awards for STORIES fragrances, skincare and sustainability
  • Increasing our sustainability measures, most importantly through fabulous new packaging
  • Watching my talented team grow

The very best part has been hearing how STORIES Parfums has enriched so many of your lives - and helped you connect to your own story.

Day Two:  Ingredients

We use only the very finest, earth-based ingredients in our fragrances and Hand & Body care - and believe in complete transparency when it comes to our processes, components and methods.

Our products are created using a combination of responsibly sourced ingredients, with excellent agricultural practices. STORIES Eau de Parfums and Hand & Body products are produced using the best manufacturing practices that comply with international and environmental regulations and laws. 

Each of our body products is packed with nutritious ingredients - from antioxidant-rich marula seed and argan kernel oils to soothing aloe vera and shea butter, for smooth, well nourished and hydrated skin. 

Everything has a purpose.

Just like us, fragrances are individuals, each with their own personalities and traits. Some uplift, soothe and inspire, while others bring comfort, pleasure and joy. We're naturally drawn to particular scents - and if you have a collection, chances are that they feature similar notes.

Unravelling the lineage of the fragrant family tree can help us appreciate the evocative power of perfume on a whole new level, discovering more of the scents we like and exploring uncharted scented avenues. Read more about notes, fragrance families and the fragrance wheel in our Beginner's Guide, We Are Family.

Day Three: Careers

Scent has always connected me to who I am and what matters to me. My journey into the world of perfumery led me to Grasse in the South of France, where I worked with an incredible perfumer who enabled me to develop new fragrances through my own intuition, using time honoured traditional methods.

Here I discovered the unique connection between our sense of smell, emotion and memories, which led to deep healing from painful childhood memories of my own. I left Grasse with two new fragrances and a passion to tell my story of joy, healing and hope through my creations.

This is the reason STORIES Parfums was born.

Day Four: How To

As a completely inclusive brand, we believe that fragrance should be accessible to everyone. Through our Beginner's Guide to Fragrance, we aim to inspire and educate those who want to know more, exploring the meaning and impact of fragrance on our lives - from the emotion it evokes to understanding notes and fragrance families. 

We wholeheartedly recommend trying a sample before you buy a new perfume. The oils and chemicals in our skin react so differently to the ingredients and molecules in a scent, which is why the same one can smell unique on each of us.

We are delighted that you can once again experience STORIES in person on counter, at independents and our favourite luxury retailers, from Brown Thomas and Fenwick to Fortnum & Mason and Harvey Nichols. If you can't make it to a counter, we also offer complimentary samples via our website.

Despite recent lockdowns, we have endeavoured to remain connected with our customers through virtual fragrance discovery sessions, hosting workshops, podcasts and online events on how to experience, choose and layer fragrance. Like many of you, we found that perfume played a more important role than ever in our lives during this time. 

Ultimately you should trust your gut when you inhale a new scent. How does the fragrance make you feel? What is it saying to you? How does that message fit into your life’s narrative?

Day Five: Aromatherapy/Wellbeing

Pausing to breathe in the fragrance of our perfume, lotion or everyday aromas can help centre us, lift our spirits and instil a sense of calm or joy.

It was a conscious decision to pour a wealth of skincare expertise and superb botanical ingredients into our body care collection. We purposely chose to put nourishment and wellbeing first - and fragrance second - that's how much skin matters to us.

A few moments of self love each day can go a long way to transforming our skin and instilling a deeper sense of wellbeing. Whatever products or method we choose to apply, it's good to notice how it makes us feel to care for ourselves and our skin in a more mindful way.

The very reason I wanted to create my collection was to give people the space to stop and connect with fragrance in an emotional way.  Fragrance has the power to connect us to our true selves - connecting us to our past, present and even hopes and dreams for our future.  STORIES Parfums is an olfactory ode to the memories that have shaped MY life - but this is just MY story - I feel like I have begun the story in homage to my own story - but with any good story it needs a beginning and an end. Now my fragrances are a gift to you to write your own story.

Day Six: Creation/Perfumers

While designing my Eau de Parfums at the perfumer's organ, I learned to use notes through intuition - and that we can have preconceptions about adoring or disliking a scent even, even before lifting it to our nose. I learnt to inhale notes and connect to my feelings and emotions, rather than choosing from a name. 

True perfume lovers savour the experience of selecting a scent and getting to know it intimately before committing. So when choosing a new scent, trust both your emotions and your nose... try not to be swayed by certain ingredients or what you think you should or shouldn't like. This is the very reason we number STORIES fragrances rather than naming them.

I have a unique way of teaching people how to connect to their own story through their sense of smell, without any preconceptions or barriers. I do not get influenced by a trend or what is needed to fill the market.  I neither write briefs nor have an imagined outcome when I begin to blend a new fragrance.  It really is a naturally evolving story in an aromatic form. 

Day Seven: Sustainability

Pioneering sustainability in perfumery has been an important part of our brand purpose since day one - we will always endeavour to do more and do better. Every detail of our story is considered - with connection at its heart - to our past, our customers, our environment and the future we hope to preserve.  This is the reason we strive to be ethical in every element of our business, constantly looking for new ways to do so.

Transparency matters to us. We are passionate about the products we make, love to share the provenance of our ingredients - and take pride in using only the highest quality materials.

We believe that sustainability and luxury can coexist in perfect harmony and a true sense of connectivity underlines our commitment to ensuring that we are as sustainable as possible.

  • we manufacture with the lightest carbon footprint
  • all of our paper labels are raw
  • we now use Zamak caps for our glass bottles
  • all of our glass bottles are refillable and can be repurposed
  • we don't wrap our boxes in cellophane
  • we offer a 10% discount on next purchase on returned bottles with cap.  

While sustainability has always been a priority at STORIES Parfums, we are constantly striving to further reduce our environmental impact.

Whether you choose to celebrate by wearing your favourite fragrance everyday or getting involved in the fantastic event line up, I hope that you experience wonderful new narratives this National Fragrance Week 2022

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