While we are on the subject of women achieving success in the world, one of our favourite female perfumers, Angela Flanders, has got a new shop in an extremely cute space in Artillery Passage, which is a Dickensian-style, history-soaked backwater street near Spitalfields and next door to another of our favourite clothes shops, Precious, owned by Angela’s daughter Kate.
Angela’s main store is in Columbia Road Flower Market and is only open on Sunday’s, so this new store, open every day except Sundays. will be welcomed by fans of her perfumes and scented products who fancy something more convenient. Angela has been making perfume for nearly 30 years, carving a niche as one of the most interesting and successful perfume-makers based wholly in London and (I think) the only one in the East End. You may remember she makes the house-smell for Dennis Severs wonderful home.
When we were invited to the launch of the new store, we were also introduced to Angela’s latest perfume, Aqua Alba, a perfume inspired by meeting Dr Jim Beveridge, Johnnie Walker’s master whisky blender. Jim and Angela got on like a house on fire, as there is much shared ground between blending peaty, malty whisky and the alchemy of perfume making.
Angela invented Aqua Alba as a celebration of the evocative aromas that surround whisky. To me it smells like how you might imagine an idealised Scottish pub interior to smell after you’ve been on a long, damp walk across heathery highlands dressed in Harris tweed. It’s richly smoke-peaty, tobacco-y and warm…no real trace of the smell of whisky, but it’s everything you’d WANT whisky to be if it was a perfume. I really love it and I reckon it would suit a tradition-loving man. it’s a limited edition at £95 here
If you visit the store, ensure you get a sniff of Angela’s award winning Precious One perfume, made for Kate’s store next door. It won the FiFi best new independent fragrance of 2012 -beating other much grander names to the prize. It too is gorgeous, in a more tuberose, jasmine and mossy manner, it’s officially a chypre and is £55 for 30mls, do not miss. I also swear by her moth repellent wardrobe spray.
I can definitely recommend a whisky sour – Angela mixes a good one- served in tiny Victorian antique glasses when testing the Aqua Alba.
Angela Flanders new store is at 4 Artillery Passage, Spitalfields, London E17LJ and also at 96 Columbia Road, Shoreditch. London E2 7QB
Remember Columbia Road’s wonderful Christmas Wednesdays, where shops open 5-9pm start 28th November until Christmas