Ineke is a highly trained Perfumer, who is the driving force behind perfume brand, Ineke. Famous for the perfume “stories”, Ineke kindly gave us a deeper insight in to the company and her journey so far.
I trained as a perfumer while working for a fragrance supplier in Paris in the 1990’s. Later when I moved to San Francisco with my American husband, I discovered that there was no fragrance industry there, and if I wanted to continue with perfumery, I would have to start my own line. That’s exactly what I did.
Inspirations come from many different directions, often at the same time. More abstract ideas come from art, design, literature and other types of products. I get specific scent ideas from the many rare and unusual scented botanicals that I grow in my small San Francisco garden, from heady flowers like gardenia and angel’s trumpet to aromatic plants like absinthe and angelica. I sometimes say that I have the Noah’s Arc of gardens, just one or two of each, but that’s all you need for inspiration.
I always looks for an original combination of notes that also smells attractive. No discordant notes for me, or creativity for creativity’s sake. It’s also important to me that what I’m creating doesn’t exist already in the market. There’s such a sameness in the mainstream fragrance market, and that’s really something I try to stay away from.
Olfaction is such a primordial, ancient sense, and humans are slowly losing touch with it. It’s so important for emotions and memories – the fabric of life, really – and for sensory pleasure. I think perfume can reconnect us with this sense.
Do you have a favourite perfume from your collection?
My personal favorite is Evening Edged in Gold, which has this really yummy combination of cinnamon, sandalwood and vanilla that draws you in. My best-selling fragrance though is Field Notes from Paris, a more edgy woody oriental that works equally well for men and women. I’m proud of its success.
I think the signature relates to the raw materials that I tend to use over and over again. My fragrances are clear, harmonious and accessible. They’ll make you smell special but like an attractive human being.
Getting my fragrances in front of people’s noses has been the biggest challenge. Retailers tend to go for those big designer-licensed brands that spend millions on advertising. There are so few good retail opportunities for niche lines that I’m very grateful when a stockist like Alyaka recognizes the unique charms of niche fragrances.
It’s always a great day when someone tells me one of my fragrances has profoundly touched them. It’s all about personal connection. If I can make someone feel invincibly attractive or reminisce fondly about their halcyon days, that’s enough for me.
Ineke fragrances are dedicated to the art of perfumery while also reflecting poetic storytelling about contemporary life.