I'm not sure what it is about Humiecki & Graf, but both their name and the name of lots of their fragrances sound very slavic and depressing; perhaps melancholy would be a better word. There seems to be a fair bit of negative blog press about them, although a few people also think that this is about as niche as it gets, so I thought I would give Geste a go. The notes list is short and sweet - soft amber, musk, violet petals and fir resin. I am not usually a huge violet fan, as I find this quite a difficult note to appreciate and pull off, but lately I've been considering trying out a few more violet-based perfumes.
Geste opens with a big burst of spirity aldehydes, and with what I perceive as a brief zing of lemon and petitgrain, although these aren't listed. A candied violet accord emerges as the aldehydes linger, albeit slightly more subdued, smelling a bit to me like floor polish. The violets take on a doughy smell after a while and the fragrance becomes a bit more thoughtful and even a touch melancholy to me. It ever so slightly reminds me of L'Heure Bleue, but not for long, as the sweet amber and musks start to take control. In the heart the doughy violet, musks and amber do a bit of a jig together, but ultimately, this fragrance is mostly about musk, with violet in the supporting role. These are laundry musks to me, a bit fuzzy and even slightly metallic, catching the back of my nostrils. This might be amplified by the fir resin, although this note is not that evident on my skin, at least, I don't think so. The dry down continues pretty much on the same theme and at this point, depending on my mood, the musks can start to become a bit cloying. I would have liked it if the musk was a bit dirtier and the amber slightly dryer, but having said that, this might not have worked with the violet.
Overall I do think this is quite an intellectual fragrance. It's more complicated than one would think from the short list of notes, but ultimately I think it is not really me. My favourite part is when the aldehydes fade to a doughy, violet, slightly dreamy phase, before the musks kick in. Its not bottle-worthy for me, but I am keen to sample more from this line - I think it is possibly slightly unfairly overlooked.