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Jorum Studio Paradisi


JORUM JOURNAL is a monthly glimpse behind the scenes at independent Scottish perfumers Jorum Studio. Find out what’s inspiring us, what’s motivating us, what we’re celebrating – the thoughts and stories behind our unique fragrances.

MAY at Jorum Studio saw us delve deep into the inspiration and creative process behind our much-loved earthy green bergamot and grapefruit perfume Paradisi. We hope you've enjoyed our blog giving a deeper insight into the best-selling fragrance. If you haven't yet, you can find them below: 

Paradisi: A Visual Journey
Scent Soundtracks: Paradisi
Anatomy of a Scent: Paradisi



Glasgow School of Art alumnus Akvile Su is a jeweller who epitomises the spirit of contemporary craft in Scotland and beyond, with her gender-neutral pieces created from recycled silver offering a forward-thinking approach to materiality and form. We chat about her creative process, about her recent exhibition in New York and the sensory experience of making and wearing jewellery.

Akvile Su Jewellery image by Aleksandra Modrzejewska
 Model Robert Moses wearing Akvilė Su photographed by Aleksandra Modrzejewska
You have quite a varied arts background – what drew you to jewellery as a medium?
As a kid and during my teen years I used to go to art summer camps. During one of those camps we had an opportunity to visit a father-daughter jewellery artist duo. It was so inspiring – like nothing I'd seen before. I was fascinated by their studio, retail space and meticulously crafted precious objects. All the tools, interesting furniture of their workshop, many design sketches, beautifully displayed merchandise. It felt like stepping into this magical secret world. That's when I realised that I'm drawn to the idea of creating wearable art.
One of the jewellers held a workshop with us kids, where I worked with brass for the first time. It felt empowering to work with metal, getting this tough material to bend into shape. My desire to learn and master ancient metalworking techniques was born.
At Jorum Studio we create genderless perfume because we believe that people should wear what they love. Your pieces are also genderless – how did the concept of gender come to feature in your concept?
Growing up in Lithuania, where gender roles are set in stone, I always felt that the traditional binary system was flawed. I was restricted by what was allowed or expected of me as a woman. Over the years I've started questioning these roles and expectations more and more, then a major shift happened during my time studying in Scotland. I had an opportunity to meet wonderful friends and course mates who taught me about the spectrum of gender identities and gender as a social construct.
Learning about this concept revealed to me how ridiculous it is to divide objects into gendered categories. Jewellery is still extremely gendered, so it became my mission to challenge it with my work. 
Akvile Su Hollow Ring
Akvilė Su Hollow Ring photographed by Stark Studio
What or who are your biggest inspirations?
I'm inspired by fashion, the visual arts, and jewellery history. Architectural forms also play big part in my process. I'm sort of like a sponge, soaking up all these different references that I combine in the end.
What is currently the most important thing to you about your own work?
Currently the focus is on updating signature designs with textured finishes and keep introducing new work regularly. Especially signet rings, they are my new obsession!
You recently exhibited in New York at the Museum of Art and Design – congratulations! Can you tell us a little about the exhibition in your words? How did the exhibition go for you?
Thank you, MAD About Jewelry was the most exciting show I have ever participated in! Being held in the centre of New York, the energy and liveliness of the city and its people was truly inspiring. I spent five days in the exhibition showcasing my work, talking to the visitors and fellow artists. It was a priceless opportunity to showcase on an international scale and I am delighted that my jewellery is now being worn on the streets of New York.
The best part was showcasing alongside fellow jeweller Iker Ortiz, who I looked up to when I was still a student at Glasgow School of Art. It was such a full circle moment for me. 
Akvile Su Jewellery in MAD About Jewellery Exhibition New York
Scent and jewellery are similar in that they are often the final thing a person will put on themselves – and people often say they do not feel ‘complete’ without them. Do you think there is an important sensory element to jewellery that goes beyond how it looks?
First thing that comes to mind is the weight of the jewellery you wear. My clients and friends often mention how light or naked they feel if they forget to put on their favourite rings or a bracelet. Everyday jewellery is sort of like an armour you wear – the sound it makes can help you feel assertive. Hearing your earrings dangle in the breezy wind can feel soft and comforting.
Do you have a favourite scent that’s associated with your jewellery or making process?
I love the smell of charcoal block when it gets in contact with fire. Also if I accidentally burn the wooden handles of my tweezers it smells like cozy winter fire (much like Jorum Studio's Firewater) which I enjoy – but don't try it at home!
How about a favourite scent from the streets of Edinburgh and New York?
My favourite smell in Edinburgh is gorse, the soft scent of coconut reminds me that spring is here. As for New York, I'm a big fan of wet concrete and earthy petrichor scent when rain hits the ground.
Akvile Su Jewellery
Jeweller Akvile Su
Akvile (right) and client Glen wearing the Hollow Ring.


Jorum Journal reading list book covers


From Bauhaus to Our House by Tom Wolfe
An insightful opinion piece on the state of modern architecture and general 

Nearly Eternal by Norbert Schooner and Steve Nakamura
Some of the best and most striking food photography we've seen – straddling the line between reality and fiction. Pure sensory delight.

The Book of Symbols – TASCHEN
A wondrous collection of archetypal symbols from throughout history and the world.

close up of Bergamot fruit


We touched upon the humble bergamot oil in our recent Anatomy of a Scent: Paradisi. There are a few types of bergamot extract – however we won’t get into them all, as we'd be here all day!

The Citrus Bergamia plant is thought to be a hybrid of the bitter orange tree and the lemon tree. Interestingly, bergamot trees are grafted onto bitter orange tree rootstocks. Most of the world's bergamot harvest, cultivation and extraction happens in Calabria, Italy – a perfect location for growing the plant with beautiful warm days and cooling coastal winds from the Ionic sea.

The bergamot fruit resembles a large orange with a tough green/yellow peel. The fruit is usually harvested by hand so as to avoid bruising the peel and losing some precious oil. Bergamot essential oil is obtained from the peel of the fruit when it is nearly ripe, and may possess a dark green to pale yellow hue.

Bergamot extracts are produced by cold expression. Cold pressed (or whole) oil contains a level of furocoumarins that can become phototoxic and sensitising. This whole extract is drastically limited in its use within a fragrance or cosmetic product. Furocoumarin-free (or reduced) extracts can be used in perfume much more freely. This material is produced by further processing via distillation under vacuum, reducing the pesky furocoumarins as a result! The profile is marginally altered in the process and in our opinion the quality of the aroma is slightly reduced – thankfully however, the richness can be reintroduced with some skill and the end result is almost identical.

The aromatic profile of bergamot is nothing short of exhilarating. Characteristic citrus notes of orange, lemon, lime; more floral tones of petitgrain, neroli, orange flower and even subtle hints of dewy jasmine and fleeting osmanthus-like stone fruit aspects push-and-pull into focus. As the profile develops there is a detectable oakmoss soapiness with a weak woody back note. The initial sweet, citrus fruity character becomes almost wine and tobacco-like on development. Good grades of bergamot oil should show an oily herbaceous character too. Bergamot is an all-rounder that can be used in any perfumery application and is one of the most useful, prolific and versatile materials. 

At Jorum Studio we tend to use the furocoumarin-reduced extract exclusively, and in many applications within our niche fragrance collection. Tiny traces in leather and woody structures to add lift and naturalness to the opening impression (as can be experienced with Medullary-ray), more significant quantities to freshen floral profiles (as found in Trimerous) and naturally, large primary amounts in citrus formulas such as Paradisi. Our neo-Chypre Elegy also contains large amounts, where the saturation and synergy provides both freshness and improved performance due to bergamot oil's unique fixative capabilities. 

Bergamot oil always transports us to happy childhood memories. Our master perfumer Euan's grandfather loved bergamot – he would wear traditional colognes dominated by bergamot, he would plant bergamot trees and bergamot mint (mentha citrata, not to be confused with the citrus fruit), would treat his grandchildren to hard-boiled sweeties with bergamot extract in the summer (and aniseed or ginger ones in the winter) and he only cared for Earl Grey tea in the morning. For Euan, bergamot has been a constant companion for as long as he can remember. 



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