Grasse- chez moi…

roses of GrasseHello Everyone! It has been so long since I last wrote and in that time, as of last Wednesday, I finished my MANE internship and am now planning the next section of this fragrant and sunny adventure.  It is Rose season now in Grasse, with the fields full of the Rose de Mai and last weekend the streets full of people and roses for the 37th annual ExpoRose.   what fun!  I got to replace some of the stolen photos with macros of all this years gorgeous roses on display from all the Rose growers of the region:  (my favourite was from an Italian grower from Mougin with a spectacular huge highly fragrant rose simply called XXL)

Lately, instead of seeing my life as being at a cross roads, I have been using the analogy of a round-about; which to me is much more fitting of how the circumstances actually feel.  I am going round and round on the inside lane, looking carefully and with interest at each road that branches off in various directions.    I might feel a bit dizzy now and then, but this is the freedom of a round-about; it’s not nearly so black and white or abrupt as a stop light or a cross roads. I like that. And???  What road is looking the brightest and most strewn with flowers and shiny things, you ask?  The answer- Direction Grasse.   I want to stay.  Plain and simple.  This is the land of sunshine and jasmine flowers, roses and orange blossoms, mimosa and wisteria- and of course, the run down beautiful dirty old city of Grasse that you either love or hate….  Where I find myself now feeling like I belong.  And of course it’s not just the flowers; it’s also that in this land everyone speaks of perfume and the industry is ever present.  Jean Claude Ellena and Michel Roudnitska (plus many other perfumers) live just around the corner and the region is infused with the Grassois traditions and deep history of perfumery. There is a ‘knowing’ here, an understanding that is impossible to describe and that took me many monthes to even be aware of. A palpable pulse of creativity and tradition that either embraces you or spits you out.  Maybe this is true for every place. The past 15 monthes have been exceptionally brilliant, painfully so at times; but for now, I cannot imagine spending my time anywhere else; I feel embraced by this place. (with claws sometimes, but the sweetest roses have thorns…)  I am going to set up my studio here and work and create from the inspiration that is fueled by my surroundings, both good and bad, but natural.

So there, I’ve said it!  Now let’s see what happens as this story unfolds once again and the adventure continues….


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Jessica Buchanan

Canadian independent perfumer, designer, and entrepreneur.

3 thoughts on “Grasse- chez moi…”

  1. Lucky lucky lucky you and such a well made choise:to stay:-) I think that Grasse either grab hold of your soul forever, or you are just another tourist passing by. Just guess what category I belong to LOL.
    I wish you all the luck in the world and I believe that you are going to be a force to be recognized with, specially if you decide to get back into the natural fold;-)

    Big Hugs!

  2. Your blog is terrific, and inspiring. I have been interested in flowers, natural cosmetics and learning more about the farming, extraction and distillation process. I have recently been tinkering with the idea of spending a month abroad (July) educating myself, and I stumbled upon your site as I was looking for places where I might be able to do work/study. I saw mention of the school you attended and see that they offer summer school course. I am wondering if you might be open to providing further advice via email?

    I admire your strength and openness to taking risks and exploring possibilities. It sounds like you have found happiness!

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