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