7 October 2020
We’re all guilty of judging a book by its cover, a restaurant by its reviews, or even a fragrance by its name. We form preconceived ideas based on the information that we’re given and, more often than not, find ourselves disagreeing with our first impression. This becomes doubly hard when you’re trying to pick a fragrance from a choice of thirty-three, but that’s exactly what I had to do with Seattle based perfume house Filigree & Shadow. Unknown to me the founder also included a Lucky Strike extra with my final choice and, powerless to resist, I’ve actually fallen under the spell of the musically inspired Aurelia.
25 July 2020
I MADE YOU A MIXTAPE was the cause of the first real smile after my dad’s untimely death. It made me, and continuously makes me, feel again a little bit like the normal me in a time when nothing is normal. The opening is a friendly slap to your face by a very tart and crisp apple, followed by a peppery, bittersweet herbal green — the most uplifting and energizing thing since the invention of coffee, basically. The drydown is an almost ridiculously good musky-ambery skin scent with a touch of leather and crisp air.
31 August 2019
What sparked a lot of joy for me during this otherwise dreaded season, was the discovery of the little Seattle brand Filigree & Shadow. A while back I stumbled over the tweet “Dress for the job you want, not the job you have,” showing a guy in a Grumpy Bear costume. The sight made me laugh on a bleak day, so I checked out the account, surprise, surprise, it was Filigree & Shadow’s twitter handle, an independent artisan label located in Seattle.
25 January 2019
Etheriel huile de parfum, blended by James Elliott of Filigree & Shadow in South Seattle, is certified vegan and features a heady blend of tuberose, olive, jasmine, vanilla and sandalwood. Perfect for tossing into your carry-on, it comes in a TSA-friendly 15-milliliter glass vial.
19 December 2017
Natural fragrances, often heavy on the lavender and patchouli, bear a pretty folksy reputation. But for James Elliott of Filigree it’s less folk and more alternative rock and dream pop of the ’80s and ’90s. The local fragrance craftsman possesses a neurological condition known as synesthesia, allowing him to render music into aroma and vice versa.
23 October 2017
When I first heard and wrote about Filigree Perfumes on a visit to Seattle Niche Perfume and Beauty Boutique House Of Vartan in January of this year, I knew I was discovering a first-class natural perfumer in Seattle hometown-boy James Elliott and his thrilling creations. Unequal is an over-the-top white floral and is proof positive that small Indie natural perfumers can more than hold their own when running with the big dogs. Although here in the Northern Hemisphere the days are drawing in and winter is right around the corner, Unequal is a joyous hymn to the glories of Spring, specifically Jonquils, Lilac, and Lilies.
17 September 2017
Local perfumer James Elliott is the Jean-Baptiste Grenouille of Seattle. Or pretty damn close. (Sans the occasional murder, of course.) Elliott is possessed of a remarkable nose with powers unknown to most mortals. His nose has the almost preternatural skill to understand and express memories, emotions and places through the fragrances he formulates—scents like Sound & Fog, described as “the scented memories of coffee, tobacco, birch, licorice and sea salt,” and Lakmé, meant to invoke ballets and operas with notes of pink peppercorn and vegetal musk.
ÇaFleureBon | ÇaFleureBon Profiles in American Perfumery: James Elliott of Filigree Parfums + Smelling Music Synesthesia
4 December 2016
At my core I’m a misfit that believes the mind has every potential, therefore I’m willing to try almost anything once. And so five years ago I decided to make my own signature fragrance. My logic: How hard can it be to create a perfume? Five years later I had my answer: it’s difficult. Fun! But difficult.