Crabtree & Evelyn (1990)

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Sienna by Crabtree & Evelyn

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About Sienna by Crabtree & Evelyn

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Crabtree & Evelyn
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Sienna is a men's fragrance launched in 1990 by Crabtree & Evelyn

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Reviews of Sienna by Crabtree & Evelyn

There are 23 reviews of Sienna by Crabtree & Evelyn.

Contrary to its retro Anglo image, Crabtree & Evelyn was actually born in the late Sixties in Woodstock, Connecticut from a hobby pursued by film distributor Cyrus Harvey and his wife. Harvey, the son of Jewish immigrants from Lithuania and Poland, had started Janus films in 1956, based on his love of French cinema which he discovered during a short stint in Paris at the end of WWII. The Cambridge, Mass. outfit ran the Brattle theater and with his partner Harvey imported and distributed European auteur/arthouse films, introducing American audiences to the likes of Antonioni, Bergman, Fellini, Kurosawa. He sold Janus in 1966 and moved to Connecticut to devote himself to gardening, breeding corgis and other English gentlemen's pursuits, but from the fascination with the hip stores he'd helped establish underneath the cavernous Brattle was born the idea to import soaps rather than movies. The venture, a home business at the beginning, was given an Anglo vibe and soon Crabtree & Evelyn became a brick and mortar store and ultimately a successful chain, marketing beauty products, foods and accessories in a hip country style. When Harvey sold C&E in 1996 there were 160 outlets in the US alone.

This backstory is well reflected in Sienna, perhaps the best cologne C&E ever made (besides the mythical original Sandalwood). To me it very much feels like a wonderful fantasy of an old school, old world men's cologne as it could only be dreamed up by a romantic American. Stilistically, it is firmly placed in the "more-is-better" era of the 80s, a typical green leathery chypre that touches base with many scents of that time and their complex DNA of citrus, galbanum, artemisia, clary sage, clove, floral accords, patchouli, amber, leather, oakmoss and more. It's not surprising that Sienna evokes Tuscany as well as Jermyn Street, it has an iridescence reflecting "italianità“ no less than "Britishness", reminiscent of men's tailoring with it's Anglo-Italian cross-references. The common denominator is, of course, gentility.

Siennas creator is unknown, my original 1990s bottle was made in England, however and that almost makes me wonder whether it might not have been John Stephen of Dukes of Pall Mall and Czech & Speake fame, this secret Elgar of 1980s English perfumery. It's feasible, considering that, while it was not expensive, Sienna is marvelously well constructed and rises above the field by the clever use of beeswax, which provides a gently sweet warm glow buffering the greens and the leather. It really does add an olfatory sienna note to the skin akin to a Tuscan evening sun dipping houses and fields in a golden ochre. And that, in the end, is the image Sienna evokes to me: a Europhile American taking a photograph of an English painter creating a canvas of a Tuscan evening. Sounds postmodern, smells beautiful.

A true classic! Every gentleman should have this scent. I really don't get leather or lemon, but I always thought this was a vanilla-sandalwood frag with spice notes. One of my faves.

The best of the Crabtree & Evelyn line, Sienna, with its spices and leather sits nicely alongside Z-14 and Trumper's Curzon. It--to me--is less about Sienna and all it represents (the Palio, panforte, etc.), and more about Jermyn Street and a gentlemanly English vibe. Despite its spices, this is no oriental--it is a medium-dry leathery chypre-like fragrance with great lasting power and subtle sillage. The lemon gives it some freshness while the oakmoss and patchouli in the base give it depth and warmth. Imagine Giancarlo Giannini on a trip to London, wearing a bespoke suit, strolling down St. James'on his way to some assignation (His tailor? A mistress? His priest? Just looking for an enoteca?)--that is what Sienna evokes for me.

This is/was my favourite scent out of the men's range at C&E. Sad to hear it has been discontinued. I've tried the eau de toilette and soap - both were superb. Very masculine...woody, earthy, leathery, herby and powdery. If I could set a scene to match this fragrance it would be like walking into Penhaligon's at St. James Street, London. Sort of traditional, old world vibe, gentlemen with mustaches and monocles wearing top hats; coach and horses out front...

Wonderful fragrance for men... sadly discontinued.

Sienna by Crabtree & Evelyn is a wonderful, traditional masculine combination of citrus, herbs and soft leather. The lemon is fresh, and the herbs such as rosemary, basil and clary sage give a nice feel and touch to the smooth leather note underneath, all resting on a nice base of oakmoss and patchouli. I use the shaving soap for this (in addition to the Eau de Toilette) and it smells amazing!

It's sad that this one was discontinued recently because it really smelt more expensive than it was. Like a very expensive, clean luxurious soap with herbs, leather and spices. Wonderful stuff. This was made to smell like medieval Italy (the city of Sienna), but actually it smells like really expensive soap... in fact the best! I am a little sad that Crabtree & Evelyn discontinued this one (as they did with so many of their "better" fragrances. Mais c'est la vie!

I found a bottle of eau de carven in my late grandpa's cupboard dated around 50s.
Sienna reminds me of that... Its really amazing, not necessarily to be called old man's stuff.
Though I wonder whats " hint of fire "

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