Thursday, December 30, 2010

Boadicea the Victorious "Pure" and "Vibrant"

image from
The first time I heard of Boadicea was when I watched this movie on TV.  I was enthralled with the historical figure, and it doesn't hurt that I love Alex Kingston.  So when I stumbled up this line, I was excited to try some of them.

But holy smokes!  There are so many - how could I decide?!  To tell you the truth, I don't remember how I decided on Pure and Vibrant (I bought these samples from The Perfumed Court a while back and I'm attempting to test as many un-tested samples as I can before I give in and purchase new ones)

Here's a review from Rebella and another from Jess about some of the BtV line.

Pure - I have to say that I really like this one.  It starts off to my nose with a blast of bergamot and citrus and smells old-fashioned in a seductive way (does it also have aldehydes? not sure and not listed); and then the citrus stays while the earthier notes start taking hold.

Luckyscent states the notes as "Bergamot, Sicilian lemon, green tangerine, Mediterranean cypress, basil leaves, Egyptian cumin, juniper berry, ylang ylang, sandalwood, amber, patchouli, vanilla"

Vibrant - well, it's not vibrant but to my nose a pleasant albeit average leather scent.  The BtV website says something like citrus with leather, musk, resin, 'blowsy' rose and a smoky woodsy finish.  Hmmm.

Here's an interesting article about the BtV fragrances that the First Lady chose.

And finally a wonderful post from Left Coast Nose BtV, Michelle Obama and scent

Please chime in regarding your thoughts on the line - I'm interested to know if any of you readers have tried any.

EDIT:  here's another review I found from Michael

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Holiday perfume sniff fest with family

Had a wonderful holiday weekend!  Christmas morning my son and his girlfriend came by around 10:00 a.m. - we had lots of great brunch food, and exchanged gifts, and watched "It's a Wonderful Life."

Sunday, the Moth and I went to my mom's where four of my five siblings were in attendance, along with the majority of their families.  Chris was there with his 28 year old son; Diane and 6 of her 10 children (her husband was home ill); Marc with his wife and two daughters; Maria with her husband and their two sons.  (My youngest brother David and his wife and three daughters live in CA so they couldn't make it)

I brought all my perfume - and had a sniff fest!  I went upstairs to the spare bedroom and spread out all my bottles of perfume, then took out some of the samples.  I wanted to gauge what people liked from testing the bottles of perfume first.

Diane joined in - she's looking for a new fragrance but couldn't find exactly what she wanted.  I was giving away my bottle of L'Occitane's Miel and Citron and she gladly re-homed it.   She also wanted a sample of  Hermes Un Jardin apres la Mousson

Her 8 year old daughter was hilarious.  She sniffed some of the perfume bottle tops saying something like 'not enough smell' over and over again until she came upon Miller Harris' Fleur Oriental - so I made her a little spray sample of it!

Another of Diane's daughters, age 5, loved L'Artisan's La Chasse Aux Papillons! She put the sample I made in her pocket (and later on, lost it, so we went on a hunt up in the attic to try to find it - and we did!)

My middle brother Marc loves scent.  He really enjoyed Bond No. 9's Chelsea Flowers and most of the Lutens' line that I own.  So I made him up a sample of CF and gave all of my Lutens samples except for the Queen Rose.

One of Marc's two daughters, age 16, was extremely happy to be sniffing perfumes.  She was immediately drawn to Miller Harris' L'Air de Rien!!!  She also really liked Diptyque's L'Ombre dans L'Eau.  As you may know, these are two of my absolute favorites perfumes!! I also gave her my Tokyo Milk samples.

My other sister Maria stopped in for a moment.  She likes "fresh" scents; so I showed her some Annick Goutals and she liked Ninfeo Mio the best (which is one I cannot wear at all - I should have given it to her as that one doesn't set well with me - but she left the room before I could think of it)

But this was the oddest thing - NO ONE liked the three Tauer's that I had them sniff (LdDM, Un Rose Chypree and Un Carillon pour un Ange).  Isn't that weird?

Oh and another thing - my throw-down between Avignon and Cardinal?  I STILL don't know which one I like better!

 Hoping everyone is having a wonderful holiday season!  I'm looking forward to another long weekend as I have this coming Friday off for New Years.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Solstice Party!

Although I'm still ill w/sinus infection and bronchitis, the Moth and I are traveling across town to visit my dearest friend D as she's having her annual Solstice party tonight (although it's not the Solstice, yet - but it IS the weekend!).  I did ask her if it was okay for me to attend; I am taking antibiotics so I don't think I'm infectious.  There will be much fun and food and conversation!

I love this holiday.  When my son was younger, I would always gift him a Solstice gift on the special night.

I cannot wait for the bonfire where we write our wishes/thanks/dreams on a piece of paper and throw it in the fire to the heavens.

The Moth is making his delightful pecan pie to bring to the party.  I'm bringing smelly things - incense and perfume and candles.

I'll be doing the Avignon v. Cardinal throw down this evening - wondering what other folks will say about them, too!?  Should be fun.

Oh, and I actually fussed with my hair today!  Wow, those electrical gadgets DO work.

(photo of some our holiday decoration in 2007; note the bottle of L'Aromarine)

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Top Perfume blogs from Online Schools?

(edited 6/28/12 - someone from online schools told me I needed to delete the link)

A few of us are noted on here - does anyone have any information about this site?


Friday, December 3, 2010

what nearly a year of blogging about perfume did to me

I have been learning so much;with research and samples and my pal FF and all the other blogs and venues I read (thank you!)  and it's a continual and wonderful voyage.

But mostly *GASP* I'm drooling over perfumes with ALDEHYDES in them.  Yes, you read correctly.  Can you believe I'm saying that!?

Your little Bloody Frida is growing (up)! ;)

EDIT:  I am not saying that one has to enjoy aldehydes to be 'growing/grown up'  What I am saying is that I am going to sit with aldehydes for a while and not have my usual knee-jerk reaction to them; I still may end up not liking the big A after all or in all juice.  We shall see!

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Diptyque "Eau Duelle"

Have I mentioned that I'm slightly grey/pink colorblind? (I don't know the scientific term for this - well maybe I did at some point, but because it is very slight I never remember)

This is telling especially if you take a step in an odd direction and think about my sense of smell.

I think I'm also grey/pink scentblind.

What I mean by that is that I have a difficult time picking out nuances in some perfumes.

For instance, Eau Duelle. states these notes: Cardamom, Asian cyprus, elemi, juniper, saffron, calamus, black tea, black African olibanum, amber, Firnat Vanilla, Bourbon Vanilla, white musk

All I get is a bit of juniper and then fluffy vanilla.  And I tested it for two days!


Sunday, November 28, 2010

a lovely bath and help me find a ginger perfume

Start with a quiet sunny Sunday.
Add a little L'Aromarine Orange Santal to the bathwater.
Sink into delicious water (but don't drink it).
Enjoy the soak.
Wash hair with Giovanni shampoo. Condition with Bath and Body Work's Orange Ginger.
Scrub off with  Johnson and Parker Ginger and Green Tea shower gel
Need to find a non-scented body lotion, though olive oil works pretty well.

Ahh, life is good!

EDIT:  So I was thinking - can any of you recommend a ginger scented perfume!?

watching a foreign film and testing "Querelle"

Because of  Michael's post the other day, I tried to find a scent that would work with all the food on Thanksgiving.  I put on Serge Luten's Borneo 1834 and was quite pleased.  Usually the foodie/sweetie Lutens' drive me bonkers - but for that day, it was perfect. PLUS and this is a BIG plus, the patchouli note smells EXACTLY like my fav patchouli oil from Spiritual Sky. I wore that oil for years and years.

So now onto some testing.  Decided that Parfumerie Generale's Querelle would be a good one to sample on Saturday given that I was planning to watch "The Story of Adele H" during the afternoon. I know, the movie "Querelle" was done by a German guy (Fassbinder) but it was written by a French guy (Jenet)and "Adele" is French, so you can see how I somehow matched them up.

BTW, Fassbinder.  Sigh.  I went to see "Berlin Alexanderplatz" and walked out after three hours - I figured that if I wouldn't want to hang out with those characters for 8 hours in real life, why should I put myself through the torture of watching on the screen for that long?  Other films of his I have enjoyed, even though most of his characters are annoying.

Now admittedly I never read Genet's novel, but saw the film version twice.  Once in my early 20s when I thought it was soo cool and amazing and and...!, and again a few years ago, when I thought "what the heck was I thinking?"  But I have a soft spot for poor deceased Brad Davis. And any movie w/Jeanne Moreau is a must-watch.

The fragrance is, well first read what Perfume Smellin' Things had to say about it.

I personally don't find it as "ugly-beautiful" as Marina posted.  But to my noise it is exquisitely made, and extremely long-lasting (12 hours on my skin). 

"Inspired by Jean Genet’s brutal and erotic tale of hidden desires and violence, Querelle is a scent of supreme elegance and forceful sensuality. The top notes of citruses, black caraway and cinnamon are darkly-spicy and earthy. The heart of the scent is a brooding, passionate blend of myrrh and incense. The note of vetiver, which runs like a green-earthy, raw leitmotif throughout the composition, becomes most prominent in the base, where, combined with incense, oakmoss and ambergris, it smells dark and beautiful, and a little wicked, like a malevolent root dug up in an enchanted forest. Strange, refined and incredibly compelling, Querelle is unlike any other scent we have ever encountered, and might just be the most interesting Parfumerie Generale creation to date." (from

I'm glad I sampled this, and although very gorgeous, I don't think I'll purchase a bottle as it isn't as "ugly beautiful" to me as I wish it could have been; it needs to be a little bit dirtier somehow.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

I know I know!

I'm due for another post!  I won't bother you all with the mundane and not so mundane busy-ness of my life lately, but I will say that I hope to have a real perfume post up this weekend.

Thinking either a Avignon v. Cardinal throwdown or a review of a bunch of CB I Hate Perfumes.

And then there is the very not-enough-dirty and lovely Querelle!

Well I have four days off - so hopefully I get to some serious sniffing.

Happy Thanksgiving for those who celebrate it (and don't get me started on the huge anti-socialist debate about Thanksgiving....bah!)

Friday, October 29, 2010

"Bal A Versailles" by Jean Desprez

From Frangrantica: " Bal a Versailles by Jean Desprez is a oriental fragrance for women. Bal a Versailles was launched in 1962. Top notes are rosemary, orange blossom, mandarin orange, cassia, jasmine, rose, neroli, bergamot, bulgarian rose and lemon; middle notes are sandalwood, patchouli, lilac, orris root, vetiver, ylang-ylang and lily-of-the-valley; base notes are tolu balsam, amber, musk, benzoin, civet, vanilla, cedar and resins"

I believe that my "Aunt" Mary used to wear this.  She was a friend of the family that would come visit with perfume gushing, and armloads of Avon lipstick samples for us girls.

Because of the time frame, this scent not only reminds me of her, but of the place my father used to work - the Cleveland Playhouse Club.  He was a cook and later chef there and on some weekends he would bring some of us kids along (probably to check orders, or to show us off - we're were quite well-behaved and cute).  I think at some point there was red-flocked wallpaper on the walls.

I purchased my sample of vintage BaV from the Perfumed Court.  I adore it - it's over the top, powdery yet tart, slightly glam and a bit shrill and annoying, but  for certain days it will be just perfect.  Just like "Aunt" Mary!

photo courtesy of Special Collections, Cleveland State University Library (1960?)

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Five by TokyoMilk

The five are tested are Sparrow (Neroli & Citrus, Crisp Greens, Gardenia & Rosewood), Poe's Tobacco  (Tobac, Tea Leaves, Amberwood & Autumn Apple), Gin and Rosewater ( Citrus Zest, Rosewood, Mimosa & Mandarin) , Lapsang Su Chang (Winter Moss, Asuka Rose, Sandalwood, Black Currant), and French Kiss (Mandarin, Tuberose, Gardenia & Vetiver) (notes and photo from their website) 

What initially drew me to purchase some samples is that their bottles are so darned adorable!! 

GandR faded on my skin within 15 minutes. The rest of them some blossoming over a course of an hour.

I must say LSC had the most intriguing scent at the get-go. But FK started getting a little 'dirty' there for awhile...yay! PT deepened a bit. Sparrow sweetened a bit.

For the price ($28.00 for 1 ounce) it's not bad.  I would suggest these for older teens who are not quite ready for more heady or intense perfume, but who are interested in something outside the box.  They're 'light' and not extremely complex, but at the same time not typical and somewhat intriguing.  But also any one of any age could do well to spritz some on as they are something to cheer one up on a dreary day and they're not overwhelming or expensive.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Bond No. 9 "Washington Square"

Because I filled out that VIP card when I bought that bottle of Chelsea Flowers earlier this year, I got a free very generous sample of Washington Square.  I wore it Sunday and then Monday at work (today I'm actually wearing Miller Harris Fleur Oriental).  A colleague W. here at work spritzed some on, too and raved about WS.

It actually is quite nice.  From Basenotes"Washington Square - named for Washington Square Park, and featuring notes of bergamot, geranium, tarragon, purple rose, honey, vintage amber, leather accord, vetiver and musk."

The rose, bergamot and tarragon are splendid, and thankfully there isn't (to my nose) much honey.

During the drydown, Washington Square get a little soapy for an instant, but then the leather comes up, pleasantly (i.e., not in your face).   On my skin the fragrance gives up the ghost by afternoon as I have to re-apply.

I love the actual Washington Square in NYC, and have to say that I give a small thumbs up to the scent.

Coming up next post:  Tokyo Milk reviews!

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Andy Tauer - "Vetiver Dance"

This is what Vetiver Dance means to me (notes of grapefruit, clary sage, black pepper, lily of the valley, vetiver, cedarwood, ambergris, cistus, tonka bean)

"Here He Comes" by Eno (just music, no video to speak of):

Vetiver has always been a melancholy scent for me.  Beautiful albeit too wistful for every day.    So I'm sorry Andy, there is no happy dance here for me, but gorgeous none the less. And yet, this is a scent I want to own in a full bottle.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Ormonde Jayne - Tolu

Awhile back, my perfume pal FF gave me a generous sample of Ormonde Jayne's Tolu.  Her husband had been in London and brought her back one of those fabulous sets of samples, and she gifted me Tolu as after a sniff-fest at her home, I liked this one the best.

Given that my life has been in total upheaval lately, I haven't been paying too much attention to new samples and perfumes.  I have worn Tolu a few times, but didn't note what I really enjoy about it, until now.

From their website:

A Peruvian tree resin.

Perfume treasure, this opulent velvety formulation with pure Tolu resin takes you on a sensual Oriental journey. Laced with golden frankincense and amber, the scent's core is enveloped with a heady mix of orange blossom and clary sage, while intense citrus notes consolidate the harmony.

Top:Juniper berry, orange blossom and clary sage
Heart:Orchid, Moroccan rose and muguet
Base:Tolu, tonka bean, golden frankincense and amber

The beauty of this fragrance, to my nose, is that it isn't a super heavy fragrance.  I love 'woody orientals" yet the orchid and rose (I THINK I can decipher those scents!) pop out in such a gorgeous way to keep it from being typical.

photo from

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

DL&Co "Angels Trumpet"

Oh dear - I'm  *gasp* becoming a girly girl!

No not really - ha!  But I am really enjoying Angels Trumpet.  I believe that Carol at WAFT by Carol gave me this sample, and I want to thank you very much.

From their website:  "FRAGRANCE: angels trumpet absolute, french tuberose, woodland mushroom.
This is an unusual and rich scent which offsets the heady scent of Angel’s Trumpet Absolute and French Tuberose against an earthy and delicate scent of Woodland Mushrooms. This sweet and earthy blend, Angel’s Trumpet, has been a best-selling signature scent since it was introduced because of its unusual balance, richness, and exotic notes.

The sweet and the earthy are perfectly mixed to my nose.  This fragrance is not too shrill at all (something I often have a difficult time with florals).  Good sillage, but doesn't last that long on my skin.  Yet all in all, I recommend it!

Gorgeous - just gorgeous!  And I just received compliments from co-workers.

Note:  I actually grew a Brugmansia/Angels Trumpet plant a few summers ago.  But I didn't take care of it over the winter and it, the Angels Trumpet of Death, indeed died.

photo from

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Tocca "Stella"

I had to man a booth for my work yesterday at the county fair.  I was being paired up with someone I didn't know - so I had to think carefully what perfume to wear.

Looking through my samples, plus seeing a notification about a new Tocca scent, made me choose Stella which I picked up at a Sephora store as a sample awhile ago.

From Tocca's website" As impetuous and moody as a rebellious young Italian beauty, Stella attracts your senses with blood orange and spicy lily. A flirtatious combination of white freesia, wild diamond orchids, sheer musk and sandalwood create a fresh, sensual fragrance."\

Oh.  Okay.

It's a bit annoying to me at first - too 'girly' floral or something.  It is all in your face 'oooh I am cute and 'impetuous'!" And she IS cute though not quite impetuous.  But a good choice to be at that fair for 4 hours with someone I didn't know.

On the way back home, I sniffed my wrist and I was pleasantly surprised how nice the final dry down is.

Stella may have wanted to wear this fragrance, but I'm betting Blanche wouldn't.

Monday, August 16, 2010

how I love thee Andy Tauer (Carillon Pour un Ange)

My previous post mentioned that I do tend to be biased regarding perfumers and houses. 

I adore Andy Tauer.  Everything I read about him and by him makes me like him more and more, and his fragrances are wonderful.  I own a sample or a bottle of everything he has done so far with the exception of Orange Star.  And although Lonestar Memories is a scent I rarely wear, I do admire it.

Carillon Pour un Ange. I was a winner of a full bottle of this beautiful stuff from Elena from Perfume Shrine! Thank you again!  I have been wearing it off and on all week long. 

From his website, I quote ""Building a fragrance with lily of the valley singing in spring was a wish since I started making perfumes. Carillon pour un ange is my tribute to this wonderful forest treasure. It is a green choir of flowers. Enjoy!"  And enjoy I do.

Notes of lily of the valley, rose, ambergris, jasmine, leather..

The opening is absolutely splendid - fresh and green.  The lily of the valley doesn't fade, and stays for a long time and doesn't disappoint. 

There is a part in the drydown that I must admit is too 'masculine' for me - perhaps the leather?  But it doesn't last long as the fragrance then settles into an oddly lovely mesh of floral and earth.

BTW, The scent doesn't at all capture Swedish Angel Chimes in case you were wondering (which I have always wanted to own for holiday decorations)

Lily of the valley - the plant does look like bells for angels - or fairies!

Friday, July 30, 2010

SOTDs and Bond No. 9 Andy Warhol Silver Factory

Monday:  Nothing
Tuesday:  L'Artisan La Chasse aux Papillons
Wednesday:  AG Encens Flamboyant followed up later than evening with MH L'air de Rien
Thursday:  Guerlain My Insolence
Friday:  Bond No. 9 Andy Warhol Silver Factory

Do we all favor some fragrances based partly due to the feeling in the back of our heads or hearts that we prefer/like/respect a perfumer or a house? Or conversely, if one doesn't like or respect a perfumer/house, then do you not like a fragrance?   I know I do.  I'm not overly fond of Bond No. 9, so although Silver Factory is a pleasant-to-me fragrance, I cannot help but think 'meh.'

Here's a link to a good review at NST.  I agree - it is 'smooth.'

photo from

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

what is soothing me these days

These days.

My personal life is going through an upheaval, so I have been wearing scents that soothe me and bring up my spirits...

Annick Goutal's Encens Flamboyant and L'Artisan's La Chasse aux Papillons.

Oddly enough, I found Miller Harris' L'Air de Rien to be perfect the other evening. 

A proper post is forthcoming.

photo of Nico from

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Thirteen by Serge Lutens

I have so many samples of Lutens' stuff, I thought perhaps I should write a little about them (though I have posted about Sa Majeste La Rose, Bois de Violette, Gris Clair and Douce Amere).  So okay, I'm only reviewing nine!

photo from

Firstly, it's really humid here, so my testing may be off due to my ladylike perspiration!  A'hem.

Chergui - hrm..I'm not fond of perfumes that smell primarily like caramel.
Borneo 1834 - I love patchouli - I like the dry down okay - but not at all impressed with the chocolate.  
Vetiver Oriental - delightful and boozey.  
Cedre - I can see myself wearing this during the winter holidays. Maybe.
Ambre Sultan - now this one catches my interest.  Gonna have to sit with this one awhile. I usually don't like "amber" but the other notes are ones I enjoy.
Datura Noir - hrmm soapy and I cannot define what kinda soap. It's a no-ir for me! har har
Santal Blanc - ooh okay - peppery and rich yet a light/floral-ish note/s too.  I like it!
Louvre - oh jebesus (that's kinda what I just said as I put some on) - marzipan? Not for me!
Un Bois Vanille - toasted marshmallows

Okay so out of the 13 samples, I love two (SMLR and BdV),  really like VO, and will give SB and AS (and maybe C) another try.   (Ole Serge sure seems to like 'em sweet and edible, huh?)

Monday, July 12, 2010

Unlocking the Mystery: Joint Blog Project

What an honor to be a part of this joint blog project.  Carol has been documenting her voyage into the scented unknown when she found a  large collection of Mr. Webber's perfume at an estate sale.  Please do check out her blog- what fascinating reading!  Thanks Carol!

Oh Mr. Webber's Mystery 6T!   I have struggled with you.   As many of you know, I do not like aldehydes and this one smacks me in the face with those bubbly things.  Ouch!  But that pain is worth it because immediately afterwards, there is a beautiful greenness that comes forward and I smile. But because I do have difficulties with aldehydes, it makes it hard for me to truly discern what else is going on there at first. The bubbles obscure!

The mid range is what I find the most intriguing - there is something that is buried that wants to burst out.  Is this the patchouli?  The oakmoss?  I can detect a little rose in there too. Later, the scent dries down powdery and pretty and a bit too safe for me. The staying power is quite long - a good six or more hours on my skin.

This is a scent that I feel that Mrs. Cleaver may have worn when she went out on a date with Mr. Cleaver - it's a bit showy at first and then a little bit sultry, but not for too long so she wouldn't feel uncomfortable, and then it becomes as soft and pleasant as her pearls.
(photo from
 Here is the joint blog list!

Carol says "Post a comment on any of the participating blogs as to why you should have a bottle of this rare , unreleased parfum and we will choose the most creative reply as the winner of a full bottle of Mystery 6T , one of the 22 bottles in existence !! "

Friday, May 21, 2010

Ninfeo Mio, Ninfea, and D'Ailleurs et Fleurs

Annick Goutal (I guess I'm on an AG streak, huh?) Ninfeo Mio or should it be called Ninfeo Meow? Yep, cat pee.  And not just at one point either.  Guerlain's Aqua Allegoria Pamplelune has a slightly cat pee-ish smell at one point in the dry down phase (I quite like AAP but cannot wear it much because the Moth doesn't like grapefruit at all), but with NM, it went on and on and on, and totally destroyed its gorgeous opening for me.

Profumum Ninfea - and yet another "I have been here before!"  Oh what joy I get when I sniff a fragrance for the first time and I say that to myself.   Notes of rose (of course that's why I like it), violet, honeysuckle and cut grass.  Okay it's another rose-y fragrance, but I want! But at $225 for 100ml, I think not *sobs*

The Different Company D'Ailleurs et Fleurs.  Oh!  Sublime.  And not in a boring way.  Notes:  neroli, petitgrain, hazelnut-and elder-flowers, mandarin, star anise, bigarade orange, soft musk and prune.  It's a 'white floral' which usually makes me sneeze and get headachey.  But  this one pulls it all down with what I'm assuming is the musk and prune, and it's amazingly beautiful.  A masterpiece! NOTE:  but it does fade quickly on me.

photo:  Bougeureau's Mother and Children which actually lives at the Cleveland Museum of Art - I'm so fortunate!

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

that SOTD thing

Monday:  Fresh Cannibis Rose.  Kinda a melding of Agent Provocateur (without the provocative-ness) and BBW Sandalwood Rose.  There's a nice greeness in the drydown.  I won't purchase a bottle because I have enough roses that I adore, but this is a nice one, for sure.

Oh! I have never commented about my love for Agent Provocateur.  Well it's all Katie Puckrick's fault.  I watched a video she did, and I thought "hmmm, that sounds right up my alley" and it is!   I am very fond of that high sharp squealing rose that is featured in AP and Creed Fleurs de Bulgarie.  Love it love it love it.  Cannabis Rose has that sharp rose, too.  Wonderful!  But, using KP's terminology, I don't need to go more horizontal in my rose collection at this point.

Tuesday: Diptyque L'Ombre dans L'eau.  I truly love this scent.  I think it's my Ophelia.  Sharp green-ness then a lovely rose.   Right after a spring rain.  This fragrance stays with me for some time, though by mid-afternoon I did have to re-apply.

Wednesday:  Diptyque Jardin Clos.  First up, it's really fresh and beautiful.  But it faded two hours later. And I really slathered it on, too. Sigh.  I should test it against Chelsea Flowers and see what I think.

Thursday:  Annick Goutal Le Chevrefeuille.  I really enjoy the tart bitterness at first blush, and like Eau de Camille, it is full of honeysuckle, which I like.  But as NST states in this review, the lasting quality IS very poor.  Darn it! That is my problem w/both LC and EdC.  Here it is,  only 1:30 p.m., and I have used up my entire sample already.

Friday:  Donna Karan Gold.  A very pleasant fragrance.  Notes of Acacia, Casablanca Lily, Gold Pollen, White Clove, Golden Balsams, Fluid Amber Patchoul, Jasmine Templar.  Yes, it's pleasant, it's very pretty, but not something I want to purchase.

(photo of cow jumping over the moon windchimes by me - last year in the garden.  It's my favourite nursery rhyme and has no reference to any of these scent, I just like the photo!)

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Revisiting L'Ombre dans L'eau and Catholic school

When I sniffed Diptyque's L'Ombre dans L'Eau again, I had another one of those "I know this place."  Could it have been because I already tested it?  I'm not sure, perhaps, but I don't think so, and I'm really intrigued by it.  Here's a lovely review from Perfume Smellin' Things

Then I think of all the samples I sniffed and snorted at, and think maybe if I try it again, they might ring true.  But then I'll be in the same boat as with movies I have already seen or books I have already read...there is just not enough time in one's life for going back very often.

I'm glad I re-sniffed that one, though.

On a semi-hot day last week, I wore Annick Goutal's Encens Flamboyant, which I mentioned before is not very flamboyant but it's, well, it's not annoying to others and very comforting to me.  I like incense.  A LOT!

Then on its heels I tried Comme de Garcons' Avignon.  Oh dear lord in heaven, I adore ye!  And yes, I was raised Catholic - see?
I must purchase a bottle of Avignon by next fall - (though I wish the bottle itself wasn't so bleh looking.)  Here are the notes from  Roman chamomile, cistus oil, elemi, incense, vanilla, patchouli, palisander, ambrette seeds.  And a  review from NST

Even though I am no longer a Catholic, and although I'm not happy with some of the things that are done in the name of any religion, I really loved being raised Catholic and going to Catholic school from first to eighth grade (now the all girls' high school I attended is a whole 'nother story).

But the scent isn't just evocative of Mass.  Or maybe it really is, and I'm okay with that.  I need to wear this more to get to the base of it.  In the meantime, I'm pretty darned pleased!

I also tried People of the Labyrinths A*MAZE.   Well.  Hrmmmm.  Perhaps I need to try this again - a little too sweet at first? Not sure -   I think my nose is tuckered out.

*photo - school photograph of me in third grade*

Friday, May 14, 2010

Opium Fleur Imperiale

This week, a dear friend of mine was rushed into the hospital because she has two brain aneurysms (she is doing quite well now, though will be in the hospital for a few weeks and will have to have a third surgery soon). Coming home from the hospital on Tuesday,  we weren't sure about her recovery- it was touch and go - so I stopped by a mall because I had to get my mind off of serious things.

I ended up buying some Opium Fleur Imperiale.  I'm really enjoying it - it's Opium Lite - and good for this type of weather.  Here's the notes from  "Neroli, Tangerine, Apricot Blossom, Bergamot, Vanilla, Carnation, Myrrh, Osmanthus, Amber, Fresh Jasmine, Patchouli"

While I was at the mall I also quick sniffed Armani's Acqua di Gio, and I kept coming back to it but not enough to want to buy it at this point (mostly because I'm totally broke!).  I also re-tested SJP's Lovely, and I was quite taken with it.  The next perfume purchase just may be a bottle of Lovely.  I was actually wearing Covet that day, btw.

Now that Rose the cat peed on my knitting, and work has slowed down, I guess this means I'll be back testing more samples!

Monday, May 10, 2010

Too busy at work to post much

Too busy these days!  We received new federal funding to disperse, and we're working our tails off!

Hoping to get a perfume post in this coming weekend.

Oh, here's a photo of the summertime scarf I'm knitting when I DO have down-time - I probably won't be finished with it until fall, though!

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Creed Fleurs de Bulgarie and quick sniffs

I adore Fleurs de Bulgarie.

I actually can sleep with it (readers know that I have a difficult time with scents at bedtime)!

Here's the notes (from Creed's website): 
  • Top Notes: Bergamot
  • Middle Notes: Bulgarian rose
  • Base Notes: Ambergris infusion and musk
Plus a review

I don't understand "soapy" - some folks have blogged about it being soapy.  *shrugs*  But I am totally and magically in love.

Okay so I'm all about "what does this scent make me feel like?"    I don't think about past times or places specifically, but am romantically transported into now (which is weird, because this scent was supposedly launched in 1845).   If I was done with my perfume journey, I would feel no shame stopping here.  But I'm not done yet, though FdB will be wore by me often in the ensuing months and hopefully years.

Long live FdB!


Quick sniffs:
Cuir d'Iris by Parfumerie Generale.  It's very plastic smelling on me, and reminds me of the Girder and Panel construction set (plastic)-as kids we played with this set in the (musty) basement.

Penhaligon's Bluebell - ouch my head hurts!  What IS it with so many floral-y scents that cause me headache?

Friday, April 30, 2010

A tale of two Hermes, and a Song(es)

So let's get Annick Goutal's Songes out of the way... this is what it reminds me of:

Don't think I'll be purchasing this one.

Hermes' Un Jardin sur le Nil and Un Jardin apres la Mousson are both really beautiful.  I believe I do favor UJslN (I wrote about my initial impressions of it here-) - there's something about it that has more oomph than the other.  I'm glad that I received a large sample of UJalM from Signature Scent, and I had bought a large sample of UJslN from perfumedcourt, so I'll be playing with these two during the hot days of summer.

Oh, and I have been super busy at work, so I apologize for not being around here much lately.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Samsara, Papyrus de Ciane, and Caravelle Epicee

Oh Samsara, why are you so cheap and boring?  There are so many from Guerlain I love, but you are a big miss. 

Parfumerie Generale's Papyrus de Ciane - notes from - bergamot, galbanum, neroli, broom, solar notes, lavender, mugwort, clove, incense, cistus labadanum, hedione, vetiver, Mousse de Saxe, Silvanone, white musk.

This is a most intriguing scent - it's green yet it's musky. It's two!two! two scents in one (not quite but it does stretch from spring to early fall all in one little vial). I like it - a lot - and will put it on my 'must have' list.

Frapin's Caravelle Epicee - wow, what a surprise!  I thought this would be just caramel and spice, but it's something more.  It's notes (ala luckyscent again) Coriander, nutmeg, hot pepper, pepper, thyme, Gaiac wood, patchouli, amber, tobacco, sandalwood.  I LOVE the coriander in warms me up and keep the 'amber' from being too sweet, and earthy enough to It is definitely going on my list of things to wear in the fall.

Interesting that two of these scents were surprising to me in good ways!

photo from

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Quick post re: Le Temps d'une Fete

Well first, here's a solid review
UPDATE: and here's a brand new one at NST
and here's Mals' review

But to me, it's all gay club (not that that is a bad thing, but it's not something I need to be wearing at this point in my life). UPDATE:  I am definitely in the minority here - perhaps I should give it another try.

(photo by Brassai - this isn't the photo I wanted to post, but someone stole my copy of "The Secret Life of Paris" years ago and then I bought another copy, and again it was gone!  The photo I wanted to post was the one Brassai took of two men, one with the upper half of a suit on and the other with the lower half)

Friday, April 16, 2010

A Heeley and a few Goutals

After purchasing a few too many bottles of perfume recently, and having been in a few swaps, I have decided to really test some samples.  And I have. 

I really really really REALLY wanted to love Heely's Ophelia - who doesn't love this Waterhouse painting?

And THIS painting by Millais?

I want to find a scent that makes me feel like I'm this type of girl - waifish, peaches and cream skin, dainty (btw, everything I'm not).   Let's forget about the suicidal part of the story here, okay folks?  Just for now. 

But the scent - well it is delightful at first spritz (here's the notes according to theperfumedcourt "Ophelia features a gorgeous blend of jasmine, ylang ylang and tuberose touched with fresh notes of Italian orange and green flower stems") but unfortunately it becomes too sweet/syrupy and flat on my skin. 


So I tried a few fragrances by Annick Goutal.

Eau de Charlotte - it's nice, but the dry down smells like baby powder.

Eau de Camille - very beautiful honeysuckle at first and quite enjoyable, but also not very memorable.  Though I am going to give this one another try.

Folavril - I actually loved it at first (shocker!) but oh dear, then it smells like hairspray and soap.  And I couldn't quite figure out what soap it reminded me and then A HA!  I think it smells like Fuzzy Wuzzy soaps (you know, those soaps that grew fur?)!

That just won't do.

Oh dear again.

So I guess I'm back to the dark side.  Although AG's Myrrhe Ardente was for me too syrupy sweet (hmmm, again?) at first, and then a dull dry down.

Encens Flamboyant - not much in the way of flamboyant, that's for sure, and the incense is very thin, but I wouldn't throw out a bottle if someone gave it to me.

Mandragore.  OH!  I found an AG I actually would want to buy!  Of course it would have to be this one - bergamot, pepper, star anis, ginger and mandrake. 

But I'm still all melancholy because I want to smell like the vision of those girls in those paintings. But I find comfort in the fact that I do adore La Chasse aux Papillons - my only true girly-perfume I love.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

lovely scents in the mail

Received Signature Scent's swap package today! Beautiful samples of Frapin Caravelle Epicee, Hermes Un Jardin apres la Mousson, Guerlain Samsara, LeLabo Vetiver 46, and PG samples Papyrus de Ciane and Cuir D'Iris.

I cannot wait to test them!!!

And then my huge flacon of Creed Fleurs de Bulgarie arrived, too!

Although I have been battling a little fever all day, I'm in a wonderful scent mood!  Thanks so much SS for the swap - I hope yours gets to you soon.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

post office, UPS store, a perfume compliment, and great friends

I'm trying to mail Signature Scent 8 2ml samples for our swap.

I got turned down from both my Post Office AND the UPS store.  The lady at the UPS complimented my perfume (Tauer's LadDM btw), though.

I'm absolutely FURIOUS!!  

If I was flying to London, I could take them in my little plastic zip-lock bag.   I'm allowed to take one zip-lock bag full of stuff if every item is in a 3 ounce bottle.

TSA 3-1-1

But I cannot MAIL 16 ml of perfume!?   What the hell, USA/TSA?

My friends C and J are going to London next week (J's a Brit married to my pal C here in town) and they just let me know they'll take the samples when they go to London on Tuesday.  What great friends!  So SS, you will get your swap from me very soon!

But I'm still angry about stupid mailing rules.  They really are stupid.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Creed Fleurs de Bulgarie on

Can you believe this price?  $114.00 for 8.4 ounces!!   What a steal!!!

Edit:  I bought it - so if anyone wants some, let me know!

Thursday, April 8, 2010

DSH Dutch Blue Hyacinth, Chanel Chance, SJP Covet

First, here's Carol's wonderful review of Dutch Blue Hyacinth

Because of her post, we swapped and I received a glorious sample. Thank you Carol!

I have tried it a couple of times.  I absolutely love it at first spritz!  It is as if I went into my garden, pulled out a few hyacinths and smeared them all over myself. 

But fades.  It gets whisper soft very quickly on my skin and I want to cry  "Don't go, please don't go!"
The dry down is really sweet - not sweet like candy and not sweet like "SCHWEET!" but sweet like a little girl in her Easter outfit sweet.

I have to reapply very often, and mostly I do it to get that initial joy of hyacinth.

Oh I really wish it would stay longer.

Chanel Chance - I tried it at work yesterday and then ZING I got a headache.  Was it because of Chance or was it because I was totally stressed over grant reporting.  I'll have to give it another try soon as it is promoted as a light chypre.  I like chypres. I do!

SJP Covet.  I won a bottle from Signature Scent.  I like this scent and I do wear it pretty often when I don't want to be distracted too much, and that isn't a negative comment at all.  It is very natural on me.  Here's a quote from  "Covet opens with intensive spicy-green-mint note of geranium leaves, bright and luminous Sicilian lemon, lavender, and warm and slightly spicy chocolate notes. The heart notes are honeysuckle, magnolia, and lily of the valley. The base is darker, composed of cashmere wood, musk, vetiver, teak wood and amber"

Thanks SS!  It's a wonderful addition to my collection.

(photo from

Monday, April 5, 2010

secretions magnifiques

I just received a sample of Etat Libre D'Orange's Secretions Magnifiques , greedily opened the package, put a little on my forefinger, sniffed and I almost threw up.

The Moth seems to like it though.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Hermes "Un Jardin sur le Nil" , Bond No. 9 "Chelsea Flowers" and other sniffs at Saks

I was in a sniffing frenzy Tuesday night - after meeting up with some family members for dinner after work (on the far east end of town - I live far west), I passed a Saks on the way home and just HAD to see what they offered.

Jo Malone, Bond No. 9, Creed, and Hermes!!!

I was like a kid in a candy shop but I only had about 45 minutes to sniff.

Oh woe is me.  What do I do?  What do I sniff first?

Before I go on, I have some thoughts:

1) Department store perfume counter folks really don't know perfume.

2) Clerks at ritzy stores sometimes come off as being all that, but I learned a long time ago just to silently giggle at them when they are snooty "you only WORK here, buddy, you don't own the place!" 

Regarding 1)  I know this is a huge generalization.  But here I am, in one of the ritzy-est stores around where silk scarves are going for $300.00+, and the counter guy looked at me blankly when I said I don't like perfumes with aldehydes.  Counter guy WAS really nice and  complementary  "you know your stuff" (I am actually just learning, but okay) but I really wanted to talk perfume and he couldn't.  Sigh.

Okay back to the sniff-fest...After a few tries at the Jo Malone counter, I lost interest. I then saw the Bond No. 9 display and was all over that.

I tested New Haarlem which I thought too much honey, and their High Line- just green and citrus I thought. Silver Factory was awesome, but so much like everything I'm initially drawn to. I have it in my head that I need to learn how to appreciate florals. Lexington Avenue - ho hum. Chelsea Flowers - oh I'm in a non-stuffy non-fake flower shop!

Then to the Creed - oh my!!! Fleurs de Bulgarie is, dare I say, more intriguing than Fleurs de la Rose Bulgare? FdlRB is on my Want list - but can I also Want another Creed?

Back to counter guy. Hermes counter didn't have Un Jardin sur le Nil in plain sight, so he found it for me. I HAD to try that!!  (BTW, he also made me a sample of Creed FdB after I asked for one - score!!)

Then there was another salesperson, a woman, who was really annoying.  She showed me the bottle of La Prarie's Life Threads (cannot remember which one) and was saying something like this is the fragrance for the strong woman, blah blah blah.   I sniffed and walked away, nicely of course.

I felt like I had to buy something - well actually I WANTED to buy something, but I couldn't decide between the Creeds and the Un Jardin sur le Nil  was at the part in the drydown which smelt like rotten mangoes, so I went back to the Bond No. 9 counter and bought Chelsea Flowers.  Again, because I need to learn florals (or so I think).

After my expensive purchase, counter guy asked me if I wanted some Bond no 9 samples and I had him choose for me - Silver Factory (yay!), Scent of Peace and Saks Fifth Avenue for Her.

Driving home, I was kicking myself for buying the Bond No. 9.  I should have bought the Un Jardin sur le Nil because after awhile UJslN is was the most crisp and dry and wonderful thing ever!  Arggh!  Do I or will I ever really LOVE CF? Why did I do that!?!?

So yes, buyer's remorse. 

Anyone want a sample of Chelsea Flowers!?  I'll feel better if others will enjoy the purchase with me.


I wore CF all day on Wednesday - I would catch a whiff of flowers every once in a while and it hit me 'wow that's me!"    So although I'm not over my remorse, I'm living with it!  I must learn florals.  I must!

photo from

Sunday, March 28, 2010

the smell of me

This post may be TMI (too much information)...beware!

Tonight, I was sweaty (as is often in my peri-menopausal self) and I wiped my armpits with my hand, and had the Moth sniff (not that he hasn't smelled me before, but I was conducting an experiment)

He said "smells like some of the perfumes you have been sniffing"  He didn't realise it was just my pit smell - he thought perhaps it was mixed with powder or deodorant or something.  I rarely wear deodorant unless work performance makes it necessary.

So, I pulled out Putain de Palaces which I thought was the closest thing that I could think of to me...and what the Moth said after the initial spritz was "you smell better than that."

Now after a few minutes, waiting for the dry down, he says that both Putain and me smell very similar..but that I smell more like a pencil sharpener.  Not as 'powdery" as PdP's drydown.

So yes, I'm a whore in a hotel without the sweetness!

(self portrait 2003)

Monday, March 22, 2010

oh what wonderful mail to come home to

Had a long busy day, and I was up late last night watching the news re: health reform, and then my son needed me to take him shopping (he doesn't drive)..

I finally get home at 7:30 p.m. and look what is in the mail!!!

Thank you SOO much Signature Scent and WAFT by Carol .   You both made my day.  I'll have to kick off my shoes, and check on the animals, but I'll be sniffing soon.

Thanks again!!!!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Estee Lauder 'Beyond Paradise" and Guerlain "Nahema"

So I'm well known at work for being a perfume whore, and W gave me a tiny bottle of Beyond Paradise. It's been sitting on a table in my office with the other four little samples she gave me.
I have to say it's not bad.  I was kinda scared of Este Lauder because my Mom puts on too much Beautiful and it gags me.  Plus for some reason I always looked down my nose on Lauder's scents.

I do like the hyacinth and honeysuckle, and the amber pulls everything down so it's not too giddy.

Not something I would purchase, but I think I'll use this tiny bottle up over the spring.

I wore Nahema today.  After my scrubber incident w/ L'Heure Bleue, I was concerned, but I needn't be because Nahema is quite a pretty fragrance.  I didn't realize it was a rose scent until a few hours after I put it on.   So hurrah, another Guerlain I like!

I had to go out at lunch time to pick up paint for my office.  So of course I stopped in at Macy's to look at their fragrance collection.  I struck up a conversation w/the clerk lady - hip looking young woman (early 30s?).   I was asking for Chanel #19 and all I thought they had was a ton of  #5 and Coco Mademoiselle.  I asked about regular Coco (I have wanted a small bottle other then the tiny tester bottle I got off Ebay).  I asked about Guerlains - all they had was Shalimar and I already own a bottle .

So of course I started talking to her about Andy Tauer (she said she liked spicey scents herself)  and L'Air du Desert Marocain, and I happened to have my little decant spray from perfumedcourt in my bag and asked her if she wanted to try it.

She LOVED it.  So I wrote down his name and the name of the perfume for her.  (They did have Coco so I bought a small bottle of it.  And she gave me a sample of Chance)

Good deed for the day!


I'm woefully neglecting my sketchbook perfume journal - it's becoming a scrapbook book of copies of this blog and pieces of perfume boxes, and once in a while some handwriting ramblings.  Sigh.


PS:  Just put some Coco on and the Moth said "that smells really 'traditional' but really good."  We were  both surprised when we realized is was made in 1984 (somehow I forgot that)

Tuesday, March 16, 2010


I have bought a few L'Aromarine fragrances from I gave the Tokyo Rose to my BFF Denise, and kept the Orange Santal and Mousse de Chene for me and the Moth. I wore the OS as a signature scent a few years ago, and most recently I poured some of the MdC in my bath - it was wonderful.

I cannot find any reviews of their products - has anyone tried them?  They're not super deep but they are really lovely in their own way.  And best of all they're super inexpensive AND they have cool bottles.

I'm thinking of ordering a Tokyo Rose for myself, and perhaps the Epices.  Or maybe the Vetyver..or..

photo from

Saturday, March 13, 2010

a week or more of sniffs

Monday:  Shalimar - as I drove to work I was thinking that it was the first time I have worn it all day since I started sniffing in what notes did I detect?  Shamefully, I couldn't really discern anything specific - perhaps it is because it has such a nostalgic presence in my life.  I'll have to put my Sherlock Holmes hat on and try again.

Tuesday:  Lutens Sa Majeste la Rose - The Queen makes me very very happy, indeed.

Wednesday:  After the death of Daisy, I had to put something on that would bring up my mood, and my first thought was Timbuktu - it did help.

Thursday:  Since I did Shalimar on Monday, I put on Opium on Thursday - ahhh I still love it, and oddly no negative associations popping up from the early 80s (which btw there is a lot about the early 80s that I'd rather not remember, and lots I cannot remember!)

Friday:  I finally took the day off (though I still felt horribly guilty since I have only been at the new job 6 weeks or so - but I had been sick since Sunday and it finally clobbered me).  I didn't put anything on until late at night, when I opened a teeny tiny little package of Lagerfeld's Sun Moon Stars.   A girl I used to know wore it in the early 90s and I guess I bought a bottle then but for the life of me, I have  no idea why. Yeah I know why - because the bottle was cool.  I then, for some reason, sniffed a sample of Lolita Lempicka...and curiously they both smell similar to me.

I had to change my pajamas because even though I washed my wrists, there was scent left on my pj sleeves.

Last week sometime, I also did a very mini-test of two Etat Libre D'Orange perfumes - Jasmin et Cigarette and Putain de Palaces (ooh the skank!). I put some on the Moth and our friend Andrew - they seemed to like Jasmin et Cigarette best.  But I have to do a serious test of these, but I'm kinda afraid to because I don't wanna love two more scents - I'm too broke at the moment!

One last thing - We're watching the movie "Perfume".  Has anyone read the book and/or seen the movie?  I have read the book so I'll see if the movie is as good (or better).

photo from

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

not a perfume post

My favourite hen was found dead this morning in the coop.  I'm afraid that I didn't take care of her enough - they are all battling mites and maybe it was just too much for her.

I feel horrible and horribly inadequate, and so does the Moth.  When he went to open the coop and found her, he came running into the house in tears (he's more sensitive than I am about things in general and I love him for it)

RIP my sweetest Daisy.

18weeks - Daisy the Buff Orp

Tuesday, March 9, 2010


Okay okay, I'm being totally juvenile, but I just had to wash my wrist off, as I just tested L'Heure Bleue.

I feel like Lucy in the comic strips - "Get the disinfectant!  Get the iodine"!

I guess I don't like all Guerlains! ;)

Sunday, March 7, 2010

It's a DelRae day

After reading these intriguing posts by Left Coast Nose about Parfums DelRae's Amoureuse and  Bois de Paradis, I had to order samples to find out what I was missing.

I have sniffed them both a couple of times, and immediately I was drawn to Bois de Paradis. The cedar pulls me in and keeps me.  There was something there that reminds me of the 70s and I cannot quite put my finger on it. Is it the honey with the woods? It will come to me, one of these days.

Then today, I took a better look at Amoureuse.  The tuberose at first is a little off-putting to me but as LCN writes :

"Tuberose and oakmoss—those are big, challenging, opinionated smells going at one another. But the results are a symphony."

Oakmoss is not a challenge to me - just about everything I have sniffed that includes it, I usually like.  What I specifically like about Amoureuse is when the jasmine pops up.  The duet of jasmine and oakmoss is incredible! (gosh aren't I talking fancy-like!)

These are both very elegant fragrances - I thought at first test that they were TOO elegant for me to appreciate.  But I think I am able to.  And to tell you the truth, I cannot tell you which one I prefer - they are both stunning.

Thanks LCN!  I would have even known to try these beauties if it wasn't for you!

photo from

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Post office and another compliment!!!

So, because I have been a little wary re: many folks' wariness about sending perfume samples in the US mail, when I went to our local Post Office this morning, I sucked it up and just asked.

Of course, there were at least 6 or 7 people behind me, and I was feeling kinda guilty about taking up the lone postal clerk's time, but oh well.

He told me that you can send things like perfume and lotions and samples and liquor etc, but it's good/important to tell the post person because they have to make sure it's wrapped up and packaged properly so that it doesn't explode all over the airplanes (of course, he said this better than I am relating.)  And the two little packages I had of perfume samples were fine - he didn't even have to write anything on the packages!

I am wearing L'Artisan Timbuktu today, and postal clerk told me two times that I smelled great!

So I hope my experience calms some of the fears about mailing samples.

Oh, what were in those packages you're asking?  Well to my friend Joan, who was the first person I smelled Opium on, I sent her a little bottle of Opium, a sample of L'Artisan Patchouli Patch, and Kenzo Jungle L'Elephant.  My other package is on its way to my nieces in Cincinnati - samples of La Chasse aux Papillons, Harajuku Lovers Music, Marc Jacobs Daisy and Cacherel Anais Anais.

photo from greenbeangirl74's flickr page

Thursday, March 4, 2010

looking for lamps, finding lamps and Halloween masks

Saturday, I was on the hunt for a pair of lamps for my office at work.  I drove to the local-ish Flea Market, and darn, they were closed.

So back into town, and I remember this neat antique shop on the southern edge of our town.  I LOVE rambling around in antique shops - I wish I had been wearing L'air de Rien but instead I had on Lutens Bois de Violettes.

I scored some great lamps, and a bowl that matches a set I have at home, and snapped a coupla photos from the place.

 (cool Halloween masks at the antique store - these were the kind we wore as kids because my mom didn't have enough time to make our costumes and we bought the whole costume, including masks, at Woolworths)

When I entered the room in FAVA (Firelands Association for the Visual Arts - this is the place I'll be teaching pottery next Wednesday, and I needed to get into the studio to assess clay and glazes) my sniffing pal Frieda was there with her son, and she gets up from working on a paper mache airplane for our town's annual Big Parade, and says "what are you wearing, you smell wonderful!"

Now, the thing is, I don't smell it much after the first initial spritz.  So what is in it that I cannot detect?

I wore it again this week at work, and still not much I wearing it too lightly?  Or can I (and certain others) not detect it.

Throughout the week, I wore Serge Lutens' Gris Clair.  I bought a 8 ml decant after first smelling it at FFs house in in early winter, as I was wowed by it.  But wearing it all day at work, it came off too masculine for me...and it wasn't the lavender because I don't correlate lavender as being a male scent.  I do like it - but I think I'll layer it (which is funny, because I have been snidely commenting to myself while reading other blogs when folks suggest layering perfume because I think why would you spend soo much money on a perfume just to mess with it?)

I was able to score a sample of SJP Lovely from Sephora  and wore it yesterday to work.  It is a really nice scent, but it doesn't haven't enough spunk for me.  I wonder what Covet is like?

My little bottle of Une Rose Chypree came in the mail today from Luckyscent!!! SOOO excited I had to spritz it on me and the Moth, even though I was already wearing L'Iparie .  Also some samples were in the package - Regina Harris - Frankincense-Myrrh-Rose Maroc, Boadicea the Victorious (Pure and Vibrant).  Luckyscent gave me three samples for free (I actually was kinda hoping that they would give me the three I had put into my cart for free!) and all I could think of was TDC's Bois d'Iris (gosh I need to save up money to buy a bottle) so they also gave me Le Labo Iris 39 (which FF LOVES so I'll probably give it to her), and TDC Oriental Lounge.

I am also in the midst of a DelRae test and will probably finish it by the weekend.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

at Kohl's, celebrity fragrance sniffs

So on the way home from work today, I stopped into Kohl's on my way to Home Depot (I am looking for a good paint color for my office at work).   Kohl's had a few fragrances, so I was able to sniff SJP's Lovely and Twilight - I liked them both but preferred Twilight from what I could waft from one of those paper thingys.  I didn't fall in love with either, but I did enjoy them.

I also sniffed Britney Spears Believe, which was also not horrendous, and a bunch of other stuff that was too ghastly to remember (something in the prettiest bottle but I had a 'gak' reaction to it - oh yeah, it was Jennifer Lopez' Live Lux - which is the bottle in the photo).  Avril Lavigne's Black Star - reminded me of one of Kat Von D's scents (which I sniffed a few months ago at Sephora) ...none of which are very memorable.

I'm starting to get a little overwhelmed, though,  by how many fragrances, especially new ones, are out there.

(photo from

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Etro "Raving" and some other things to talk about

Just wanted to say that I'm being run ragged (is that even proper English?) by my new job, and I have also been elected Chair to a city commission.  My sketch book blog has been terribly ignored, as well as this one.

But I have been wearing scent daily.  In fact, I wore L'air du desert marocain last week, and three people came up to me at work to ask what I was wearing.  Then yesterday, I had on Prada Tendre (which I bought a few years ago, and do like though not sure if I'd buy it again given all the new fragrances I'm learning about through this journey), and more nice comments!  Today I had on Chanel's Coco, and when I came home from work, dragging butt, the Moth said "you smell so nice!" when he gave me my hug.  Yeah, I do! 

I also did a little test from a sample I received when I won the bid on Miller Harris' Coeur de Fleur (which btw I do like - I seem to like everything Miller Harris as I also seem to like everything Tauer, and all the Guerlains I have tried so far.).  I silly-ly bid on the Miller Harris, sniff unseen, thinking I wouldn't win the bid but of course, I did (why do I do this?  well I was bored that day!)

Anyway, the seller put in two Etro samples.  I did a test of Raving, which smells to me like a less-than Jungle L'Elephant.

Sorry this isn't a long descriptive post and I didn't post a photo!   I just wanted to keep up on some of my SOTDs.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Another quick sniff post

This is Charlemagne, the youngest of our four cats.  He sits on the dining room table a lot - and I mean A LOT.  The dining room table is where my little laptop is, so he is often here when I post to this blog, so I thought you all would like to meet him!

So quick sniffs, tests that I have done over the last week or so:

Serge Lutens Bois de Violette - love the deepness and how the violets pop in and out but fades quickly on me.

L'Artisan Patchouli Patch - adorable and slightly musty (which I like).

L'Artisan Fou d'Absinthe - this has been tested by me a number of time - I immediately like it - earthy, anisey (another scent I love), lovely...but why does it fade so quickly?  It does come back but a bit, but then fades again.  If this had longer staying power on me, it would be a must-have.

Serge Lutens Douce Amere - I think I have posted that I liked this one, in response to another blogger's post.  But I'm not sure anymore.  It's much too sweet/vanilla-y and that sweetness hangs on too much for me.  Caramel candy?

L'Artisan Mure et Musc Extreme - now I understand 'indolic' (I think) - at a point this smells literally like butt.  I need to try this one out again, and also need to test the regular version because other than the crap smell, it's has a lot of loveliness in it.

L'Artisan Timbuktu - Immediately made me smile!  Happiness of flowers and spice and earthy-goodness.

Samples that recently arrived to my home include a bunch of Miller Harris, and ToykoMilk.  Hope I get to some of them this weekend.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Chasing Butterflies and Watermelon Pickles

I first sniffed La Chasse aux Papillons at FF's initial sniff-fest.  My entire being lit up, and I said "I have been here before!"

That is the thing I love about this scent journey - being transported to places I may have been or want/wanted to be.

This poem, which was my favorite when I was a young pre-teen, loosely captures my feelings about this scent.  To me, LCaP is not a childish scent, but a most beautiful nostalgic one.

Reflections on a Gift of Watermelon Pickle...
During that summer
When unicorns were still possible;
When the purpose of knees
Was to be skinned;
When shiny horse chestnuts
    (Hollowed out
    Fitted with straws
    Crammed with tobacco
    Stolen from butts
    In family ashtrays)
Were puffed in green lizard silence
While straddling thick branches
Far above and away
From the softening effects
Of civilization;
During that summer--
Which may never have been at all;
But which has become more real
Than the one that was--
Watermelons ruled.
Thick imperial slices
Melting frigidly on sun-parched tongues
Dribbling from chins;
Leaving the best part,
The black bullet seeds,
To be spit out in rapid fire
Against the wall
Against the wind
Against each other;
And when the ammunition was spent,
There was always another bite:
It was a summer of limitless bites,
Of hungers quickly felt
And quickly forgotten
With the next careless gorging.
The bites are fewer now.
Each one is savored lingeringly,
Swallowed reluctantly.
But in a jar put up by Felicity,
The summer which maybe never was
Has been captured and preserved.
And when we unscrew the lid
And slice off a piece
And let it linger on our tongue:
Unicorns become possible again.
John Tobias

The Extreme version is more peppery, but other than that and after a few tests, I prefer the original from top to bottom.  LT/TS mention aldehydes in the original - perhaps there are,  but they definitely don't bother me in this fragrance.

Notes:  bergamot, pink pepper, linden blossom, lemontree blossom, orange blossom, jasmine, tuberose (from L'Artisan's website).  Perfumer is Anne Flipo.

Which also brings up a thought - have any of you wished you could go back and meet yourself at different ages?  I sure have - I recently had a wonderful dream that I was able to observe myself (we were both on a bus) when I was 21.  And yeah, I know all the Star Trek/Dr. Who scary theories about how the two yous together would rip a hole in the space-time continuum, but other than that...!

*photo of me between the ages of 8-10- I realize it's not summer and I'm not eating watermelon pickle, but it's the closest one I could find that would fit here.  BTW, I had to wear saddle shoes at school, so I also rocked them out of school - it was my fashion statement!*