Happy Easter! – And A New Old Perfume Love

We are busy with family visits and easter bunny watching so I want to wish you a relaxing and lovely few days and a very happy Easter!
See you again after the weekend!

polish easter eggs
I’ll leave you with this link to an old review of a perfume I have found again in my closet and have been wearing with delight the last few days.

Happy Easter!

Image source: inspirebohemia.com
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Posted in Ramblings | Tagged , | 25 Comments

A Spanish Guitar – Review: Parfums MDCI Nuit Andalouse

By Sandra

Parfums MDCI is a perfume house which exudes elegance and style with its beautiful perfumes. I was eagerly awaiting the two newly launched perfumes from 2013 – Nuit Andalouse and Cuir Garamante. Today I want to tell you about Nuit Andalouse.

nuit-andalouse-parfums-mdci-234x296

The perfume was created by up and coming star perfumer Cecile Zarokian. Fragrantica lists the notes as follows: „Top notes are orange, violet and green notes; middle notes are gardenia, ylang-ylang, rose and orange blossom; base notes are vanilla, sandalwood, musk and amyl salicylate.”

The perfume is meant to be a scent centered around gardenia. Let me tell you it is not as straight forward as that. This is a perfume that has many facets and blooms beautifully on my skin all day long, in fact I get a good 8-10 hours.

Nuit Andalouse opens up with a wonderful burst of orange laced with violets. It is only slightly green and the violets are gently sweetened with sugard blending the orange and violets beautifully. The orange and green notes actually temper the sweetness making sure that it does not veer into cloying territory. This is a simply beautiful opening. It is the start of my day sitting in the sunshine dreaming of a summer vacation that it seems will never come.

As the perfume warms up on my skin, the violets come forward with a bit of the powdered fluff that I associate with that flower.

The middle notes are smooth and the only note that I can discern with any certainty is orange blossom. At this point in time I understand what others are saying when they get a gardenia smell. I love gardenia plants and wish that I was able to care for them properly as the perfumed air they give off is delightful. I have not tried too many gardenia perfumes and I believe it is because I am somewhat disappointed that most are not as gardenia as I want them to be. However, what I get at this point in the development of Nuit Andalouse is much more of a visual association with gardenia with a modest relation to the actual gardenia bloom with its waxy white petals and fluffy feel.

My absolute favorite stage of Nuit Andalouse is in the drydown when it all comes together with a hint of vanilla and sandalwood. Music now comes to my mind – in particular – the spanish guitar. The music to this day makes me feel alive, cheerful and comforted all at once.

The Spanish Guitarist by Auguste Renoir

The Spanish Guitarist by Auguste Renoir

This is a beautiful joyful perfume to wear. It will be a perfect addition to my summer wardrobe.

Have you tried any Parfums MDCI perfumes? Which gardenia perfumes do you think I should try next?

Take a look at Olfactoria’s reviews of other MDCI perfumes here.

Posted in By Sandra, Floral, Fragrance Reviews, Parfums MDCI | Tagged , , , , , , | 18 Comments

Vero Kern At Bloom Perfumery, London on Wednesday 9th April 2014

By Tara

Vero Kern is one the real gems of the perfume world. She is an amazingly talented and inspiring woman who proves that you can make your dreams a reality at any age. Her perfume line, Vero Profumo, is a master-class in excellence and demonstrates the way perfumes used to be made, but rarely are now.

bloom_vero_profumo

Invitiation to the event, courtesy of Bloom Perfumery London

Onda, Kiki, Rubj, Mito and now Rozy, showcase top quality ingredients in moving interpretations. Her creations go right to the core of your being. Vero is also a fascinating individual as you will have already discovered if you have read her People in Perfumeland profile here on OT. Considering Vero is based in Zürich, I couldn’t miss the opportunity of meeting the lady herself on her recent visit to London.

Tara and Freddie of Smelly Thoughts

Tara and Freddie of Smelly Thoughts

Vero was at Bloom in east London to hold a workshop and introduce her latest perfume, Rozy. I went along with the wonderful Freddie from SmellyThoughts and his lovely mum, who are both big Onda fans. I also recognised a few other familiar faces among the 20 or so people there; such is the small world of perfume.

Vero was accompanied by Lisa Taylor from Campomarzio70 niche perfumery in Rome and said she was happy for me to roughly reconstruct her words below:

Vero Kern and Lisa Taylor of Campomarzio70

Vero Kern and Lisa Taylor of Campomarzio70

The Beginning

Vero Kern: I got into perfumery through aromatherapy, at the age of 54. I became very interested in the raw materials that had been used in classical perfumery for a very long time. Perfume could not be made the same way after the 1990s because of globalisation. After that, they had to conform to a certain standard from Honolulu to Hong-Kong.

I had a great love of the old Guerlains, Chanels and Carons. The Guerlains are not the same as they were. I bought a lot of bottles from the 90s, but they have been updated since. In a good way I think, to keep up with modern tastes.

I began with three perfumes; Kiki, Rubj and Onda. My perfumes contain a large amount of natural raw materials. I started with extraits which are an erotic way to perfume yourself – by applying to the pulse points – but also it meant I could produce the perfumes myself. This is because one kilo of extrait makes a lot of these little bottles.

However, people like to spray, it’s a cultural thing. So for the EDP I changed the formula a little. The differences are not big but they are there. The Voile d’Extraits have the same composition as the Extraits but at a different concentration.

A Fun Test

Vero: Now we are going to do a little test. We are passing around paper strips with a raw material and I want you to write down on a piece of paper two words which describe it.

Tara: I immediately recognised cumin, mainly because I make curry with it. So I wrote cumin – spicy, warm.

Vero: Lisa, please read the answers.

Tara: Lisa then read out all the answers which were mostly cumin with a few people identifying it as turmeric or curry spice.

Vero: This has never happened! Amazing! People usually say “sweaty” but cumin is cumin. I guess it’s because you cook with it and have so many Indian restaurants here and smell it in the streets.

Kiki

vero kern kiki edp

Vero: Now we have a raw material from Kiki to pass around. Can you tell what it is? (General agreement on lavender).

That’s right. There are two types of lavender in Kiki. A steam distilled lavender and a lavender absolute. The absolute is just as the word suggests, it is the whole thing. You see the green colour of the raw material? That’s completely natural.

This is another natural material from Kiki being passed around now. What does it smell like to you? (Most thought it smelt like caramel). It’s a synthetic material called Maltol. It’s like crème caramel.

Kiki was a muse of the photographer Man Ray in the 1920s/30s. She was a very free woman, an artist, a very special woman. This was also the beginning of the feminist movement.

I learnt to make perfume in Paris and I was influenced by Guerlain, which I had loved and had worn for a long-time. So Kiki was also influenced by Jicky which came out in 1889 and is still in production, which is really amazing. Aimé Guerlain named it after a nephew of his who had the nickname Jicky.

It was originally intended for men but was popular with woman and became a very famous feminine perfume. It’s very androgynous. I don’t like the expression “unisex”. It’s horrible. It’s like “uniform”. There are no sexes in my perfumes.

Lisa: There is a lot of sex in your perfumes, to be honest. (Lots of laughter)

Vero: That goes too far!

Rubj

vero rubj voile

Vero: Now we are trying a raw material used in Rubj. What do you think it is? (A couple of people say neroli). It’s actually orange blossom absolute but neroli is made from orange blossom also. There is something oily about it, almost like gasoline. I made a kind of reproduction of orange blossom for Rubj with other materials to make it fresher. Orange blossom is not easy to work with alone. It’s too heavy.

The next raw material we are trying is tuberose which is also in Rubj. This is a synthetic which is more flowery than natural tuberose.

Now on the blotters you have the complete Rubj Voile d’Extrait which is a 14% dilution.

Onda

vero kern onda edp

Vero: Onda means “The Wave” in Italian. It is dry, spicy, woody, there’s a little tobacco, a little honey.

We are now going to smell Onda Voile d’Extrait. It has a prominent note of vetiver. The natural material is Vetiver Bourbon.

I call Onda an oriental. It is a flying carpet to the spice market. It is also a chypre because it has oakmoss and patchouli. It is seen as difficult, just because we’re not used to this kind of scent.

Mito

mito voile

Vero: Mito came out 2 years ago. It’s a green perfume inspired by a visit to Villa d’Este near Rome. There is a beautiful renaissance garden there. I wanted to recreate the feelings I had in that garden. It was very mystical to me. There was a very specific scent in the air. The green, the water, the moss on stones, statues…

We now have a raw material from Mito to pass around. This is Indian magnolia known as champaca white. I have reproduced a base of this for Mito. It also has other green notes, galbanum, hyacinth and tuberose.

Now here is the Mito Voile d’Extrait for you to try. Mito means “myth”: The myth of eternal beauty and eternal time.

Rozy

rozy_vero_profumo_edp

 

Vero: I wanted to create a rosy perfume, not a rose perfume. Being passed around is the main material. It is both a natural and synthetic rose made by myself. I also made the labdanum base which is very special. It is warm and balsamic with benzoin.

Now being passed around you have the Rozy Voile d’Extrait. It is very spectacular. Very dramatic.

There is melon, cassis, tuberose, rose and a base of labdanum, vanilla and sandalwood.

The EDP has a passion fruit base with peach. It has a heart of rose and honey, as well as geranium which gives it some freshness. It has a powdery base.

Rozy was inspired by Anna Magnani who was a great actress and a great woman. She starred in the 1950s black and white film “The Rose Tattoo” for which she won an Oscar.

The image for Rozy is a rose tattoo and there are similarities between tattoos and perfume. They are both about identification and recognition. Both go onto and under the skin. So I was influenced by Anna Magnani in this film. I think I made a good choice!

Bloom kindly gave us all samples of Rozy to take home. I am a big fan of Vero’s Voile d’Extraits and thought nothing could replace Mito Voile d’Extrait in my heart, but Rozy Voile d’Extrait has done just that. It’s that amazing smoked honey over rose that lingers through the night and into the next day. I am truly smitten.

After the workshop, Vero spent lots of time talking to people and answering questions. We had a lovely chat in which we bonded over getting into perfume through aromatherapy and the importance of tension in art, fashion, food etc as well as perfumery. Vero gave the example of adding a touch of cumin to orange blossom. This piques your interest and stops the perfume from being merely pretty but bland. We laughed about how surprising it was for Vero that so many of us recognised cumin. That’s multi-cultural London for you!

Tara and Sabine of Iridiscents

Tara and Sabine of Iridiscents

She told me she has been running workshops for private clients including banks and marketing executives. This focuses on the importance of olfaction when interacting with people. We also talked about the people in the blogosphere we both know including our mutual friend Val the Cookie Queen and of course, Olfactoria, about whom Vero exclaimed “I love Birgit!”

Many thanks to Vero, Lisa and everyone at Bloom for a wonderful evening.

Do you have a favourite perfume from Vero Profumo? Are you eager to try Rozy?

Posted in By Tara, Rose, Vero Profumo | Tagged , , , , , , | 43 Comments

Roses In Milan – Review: Vero Profumo Rozy Eau de Parfum

By Val, the Cookie Queen

.rozy. is the fifth creation in Vero Profumo’s unique collection. Vero Kern has fulfilled a long-cherished wish with her own unique interpretation of a rose scent. It is a tribute to Anna Magnani, the great Italian actress, who played Serafina Delle Rose in the movie “The Rose Tattoo”, a drama written by Tennessee Williams in 1955.

rozy_vero_profumo_edp

 

Rozy was created by Vero Kern in 2014 and includes notes of Rose d’Orient, lilac, peaches, passionfruit, honey and sandalwood. Rozy will be available from May 2014.

I have been wearing the .rozy. EdP for a week now.

It opens with a burst of rose and peaches that is so innocent that you can only smile in glee.

photo 2 (2)

peach blossom at the in-laws garden

But hot on the tracks of this seemingly virtuous haze, comes lilac, sweet peaches and the ever suggestive passion fruit. It has now become lascivious. Which means to incite or evoke lust.

If that is not enough, there is still the long, slow, teasing, drydown. Honey, with just a hint of sandalwood. Not the sharp, indecent honey of Onda, but whipped, creamy honey. You know the kind? Also known as honey fondant or spun honey. It is so soft and beautiful on the skin you need time to realize the eroticism of it.

I am in love with this.

“I did not want to just imitate the scent of a rose such as we find in nature, always garnished with the same notes or even with oud, as is the current trend. This scent is supposed to be the rosy playback for the secrecy, the vibrancy, and the divine in the rose. The rose is the flower of virgins and women, but also of vice and prostitution.
Thorns and roses symbolize the ambivalence of love and sorrow – the drama of finite love.”

- Vero Kern

I spritzed the last of it in the shop today as I prepared to go deliver cookies. (I don’t usually spray perfume in the shop, but I was pushed for time.) My husband came out as I was about to drive away, banged on the car window and said “Don’t spray that
perfume in here again, it’s supposed to be a bike shop and it like smells like a bordello.”

I drove away smiling as he rarely compliments me on my perfume.

From a distance it appears innocent enough, but come closer at your own risk.

photo 4 (1)

Val and Vero in Milan

Editor’s Note: I can’t help but butt in at the end. I was a bit taken aback by Val’s husband’s reaction, but judging from Val’s smiling face in the end, it was a good thing. :)

I have tried Rozy myself for a few days now and I will add my own perspective in a review eventually. Such big releases warrant as many reviews and points of view as possible.

Photos by Val.
Posted in Floral, Fragrance Reviews, Honey, Powdery, Rose, Vero Profumo | Tagged , , , , , , | 28 Comments

Monday Question – What Is Your Favorite Vetiver Perfume?

Today it is time for another Favorite Note question. Let’s hear your vetiver recommendations!

Is vetiver among your favorite notes or do you tend to avoid it?

Which perfume that prominently features vetiver is the best in your opinion?

Do you like vetiver in a starring role or more in the background?

Is your favorite vetiver smoky and dry or green and plush?

Do you think vetiver is a more masculine leaning note or is it perfectly gender neutral?

What is your most-worn vetiver scent?

question-mark

My Answer:

I like vetiver. That was not always the case, it was more of a cautious friendship turning into love kind of thing between us.

My preferred vetiver is fresh and not too smoky. I like Chanel Sycomore for its dependability and the strength it seems to infuse me with. Hermès Vetiver Tonka is my absolute favorite, because I love the way it dances with hazelnut and mixes coolness and warmth in that way.

Guerlain’s Vétiver our Elle is a beauty that is sadly discontinued, so I treasure the small vial I still have. A recent vetiver newcomer I use often is Olfactive Studio Flash Back, where a bracing vetiver note is surrounded by grapefruit and rhubarb to make a unique and interesting fragrance that makes me alert and feels invigorating.

The husband loves Jean-Claude Ellena’s reconstruction of a classic, Hermès Bel Ami Vétiver and no vetiver list would be complete without the wonderful Serge Lutens Vetiver Oriental.

What are your favorites?

 

Posted in Monday Question, Vetiver | Tagged , , , | 76 Comments

Take Note – Smythson of Bond Street Makes Writing Luxurious

When I was in London I found myself entranced by something I normally don’t tend to spend a lot of money on – notebooks. I have been carrying around my trusty Moleskines faithfully for years, they are black and unobtrusive and do their job well enough.

I knew of Smythson of Bond Street and its aspirationally priced range of leather goods and stationery of course, but I had never actually taken note (yes, bad pun, I know!).

I managed to pass by the Bond Street flagship store twice without caving, but when repeatedly confronted by their concessions at Harrods and Selfridges I could no longer resist. The time was right for me to explore their offerings in-depth.

A pretty package

A pretty package

I brought home with me this gorgeous nile-blue package containing a nifty diary for those of us who find they don’t want to go on with their lives Smythson-free in the middle of the year.

This diary starts in Mid-May (on the 19th to be exact and as that is my birthday, I had no choice but to take it as a sign) and runs until July of the next year. So all my dire diary needs are taken care of until the middle of 2015.

 

photo 2 (14)

 

Smythsons own image is of slighly better quality... ;)

Smythsons own image is of slighly better quality… ;)

The diary is covered in navy-coloured lambskin, the pages are gilt-edged and made from very thin, lightblue paper called “feather-weight” that is fountain pen proof and watermarked. In short: one could say it screams luxury, but I find it rather whispers class and elegance.

photo 4 (3)

In addition to the diary I just had to pick up a companion to hold my notes for blogging, writing my book and life in general.

There is one more...

There is one more…

This notebook is a warm grey colour, features lined pages in the same Smythson signature paper as the diary and has an inner back pocket to fit cards or whatnot.

photo 3 (10)

 

Smythson paper is fabulous to write on if you are using a fountain pen, which I do. I find a fountian pen writes so much nicer than any ballpoint pen or pencil and my handwriting is much improved when I write with the easy flow of ink rather than dragging a ballpoint pen across the pages.

On the cover: Inspirations and Ideas

On the cover it says: Inspirations and Ideas

smythson grey

The notebooks and diaries are available in a plethora of colours and sizes and yes, they are not cheap. At all.

Hopefully there will be no accusatory discussion about money, because it is everyones business how and what to spend their money on. We don’t need any of the little luxuries that make life pretty of course. But need is not the point here.

If you are looking for something that makes writing feel like a pleasure, something that makes mundane things like organizing your life special, Smythson will surely make you happy. Just looking at those two small books makes me smile, handling them is a sensory pleasure and writing in them feels just plain great.

I try to look to beauty everywhere in my life. I want to be surrounded by beautiful and functional things. If I have to have something anyway, it might as well be pretty too.

Take a look at the Smythson of Bond Street website here.

What do you use to write? Are you like me drawn to good old pen to paper action or is it digital all the way for you?

What is your take on functionality vs. beauty?

P.S.: Please excuse the wobbly photos but my phone’s camera seems to be shot, because I dropped the thing. :(

Posted in Travels | Tagged , , , , , , | 38 Comments

Getting To Know Phaedon: Reviews – Sable Marocain, Lentisque and Dhzari, Phaedon Paris

By Tara

Phaedon Paris is another “new to me” brand I found at Bloom perfumery in February. Originally established in 2011, the line was re-launched in 2013 under the helm of Pierre Guillaume of Parfumerie Générale and Huitieme Art fame. The collection has been expanded to 14 perfumes and now includes candles and home fragrances.

The compositions are mostly by guest perfumers although I’ve read that a couple have been done by M. Guillaume himself. The fragrances seek to take you on an olfactory journey through the Mediterranean and are described as smooth, refined, simple and linear. Below are mini reviews of the three I obtained samples of:

Sable Marocain

sable marocain

Sable Marocain (Moroccan Sand) was inspired by the Moroccan Fantasia which is an exhibition of traditional jousting on horseback performed during cultural festivals.

Notes include amber, labdanum, citruses, ginger, woody notes, cocoa, vetiver, guaiac wood and copahu balm.

The opening to Sable Marocain features a strong kick of sugar-coated amber. Very unusual but I’m not sure if it’s in a good way. Thankfully the ginger is not too strong – just a spicy warmth – and there is a suggestion of citrus peel. The cocoa is also underplayed which is a bit of a shame. A stronger chocolate note could have given this oriental a more distinctive character.

The beginning is nothing if not interesting but its development is less so. Once the sugar has evaporated, we’re left with labdanum laid over a green, murky vetiver and it now feels decidedly masculine. This is in keeping with the macho show of horsemanship that it is supposed to represent, but it’s not my thing at all. Matters improve later in the base which is pleasantly balsamic with a little smokiness.

Lentisque

lentisque

Lentisque is named after Pistacia Lentiscus, a shrub that grows widely throughout the Mediterranean. It has a very distinctive scent and produces a resin known as mastic.

It features notes of mastic, galbanum, labdanum, woody notes, vetiver and cedar.

Lentisque is chartreuse green, starting off zingy and invigorating. A good galbanum note is always welcomed by me and there’s lots of it in the opening. I’m not familiar with the smell of mastic but apparently it has facets of pine and cedar. I definitely get a pine note from Lentisque and luckily it’s like pine needles rather than air freshener.

The dry down retains the greenness but focuses more on a nicely fuzzy labdanum and woods. All in all, it’s not too sharp the way some greens can be, but it is rather thin and one dimensional. It lacks the sparkle of a green like Atelier Cologne’s Trefle Pur or the simple sophistication of Eau de Campagne by Sisley.

Dzhari

dzhari

Dzhari is named after a famous wind that blows through the Libyan Desert.

It features notes of Malaga wine, dates, cedar, cashmeran, sandalwood, tonka beans and accord of terracotta.

When I stuck this under the nose of Freddie from Smelly Thoughts, his instant reaction was “prune juice”. I have to say however, that this was the one I admired the the most of the three. To start with it does smell strongly like dates (or prunes) steeped in sweet wine. It’s not an accord that I find personally appealing but it is distinctive and well balanced, being not too heavy or too sweet.

Unfortunately this spicy, fruity, alcoholic stage fades to a whisper within just a couple of hours. It loses its potency and turns into a very light skin scent for the rest of the duration. However, it could be that the cashmeran musk takes over at this point and my nose can’t detect it.

——————————————————–

After spending some time with these fragrances, I couldn’t help but compare Phaedon with my recent experience of Arquiste. They are not badly done at all but the quality doesn’t shine through the way it does with the Arquiste perfumes. They also lack the excellent staying power and projection of that brand.

I can see PG is trying to make a virtue of simplicity but I crave complexity and I don’t feel inspired to explore the line further. To be fair, this may be in part because the three fragrances I tried all had a distinctly masculine feel to them and that is a style I don’t much care for.

Have you tried any of these fragrances? Are there other perfumes from Phaedon you would recommend?

Posted in By Tara, Fragrance Reviews | Tagged , , , , | 30 Comments

People In Perfumeland – Lucas Szcześniak Of Chemist In The Bottle

Today we hear from a blogger many of you will know, Lucas of Chemist in the Bottle. Lucas lives in Poland and writes from his unique perspective as a perfume lover and cosmetic chemistry student.

chemist

A good day starts with…
a sunny view outside the window as I fold the blinds.

I’d never leave the house without…
a couple of things, like my wallet, a pack of tissues, house keys and a phone – all in my bag (although I often take just wallet and keys with me when I’m leaving for just a few minutes).

I always feel good when…
when I know I did my best to overcome a challenge. I feel even better when the results of my work can be seen.

My favorite thing in the world is…
taking an imaginary journey to the land of dreams where everything is possible.

The next thing I want to buy is…
a pair of jeans or chinos, preferably in a black color. Perfume-wise: a bottle of perfume (haven’t decided on particular one yet) for my birthday in late February.

The place I always come back to is…
Tatra Mountains and Zakopane, where I spent my childhood summer vacations for 7 years in a row, hiking with my parents.

My personal style is…
I like to call it a casual elegance. I love jeans and I pair it with shirts, polo shirts, monochromatic sweaters or elegant jackets. I just add a pair of brogues (or warm leather boots in the winter) and I’m done.

My favorite perfume…
is Prada Amber Pour Homme, the first fragrance I bought with my very own money. Ever since it’s been on the top of my list. Even though it’s not my only perfume anymore (yes, there were days when I only had this Prada) the perfume has a special place on the shelf and in my heart. My most beloved perfumery note is iris.

When I travel I always…
take a lot of pictures. I really enjoy taking snapshots with my pocket camera – they allow me to capture the place and the moment of life. Months later I like to come back to them and remember the fun I had here and there. I also travel light, packing only the necessary things.

To relax I need…
my bed, a couple of smooth jazz CDs and a couple of candles as the only light in the room.

When I have a bad day…
I drink a lot of hot tea, don’t talk too much and prefer to be alone at that time.

I like to gift people with…
things that are practical or can teach you something. I always try to avoid gifts that would be of no use to the recipient.

I find my inspiration…
well, I find it everywhere! In the weather, nature, other people and places. In blogs of my friends, in things people say…

Something I would never want to miss…
is a chance to put a smile on a face of my friend. If a friend is happy then I’m happy too!
Also, I’d never want to miss the opportunity to achieve my goals.

My last mistake was…
forgetting that since 1 January 2014 all trams in Poznań returned to their regular routes after the major railroad repairs. I took a wrong tram and in result I missed the train back home. Luckily the next one was just 1 hour later.

In my fridge there is always…
some natural yogurt. When I get hungry I mix it with muesli and dried fruits to make a colorful and healthy snack.

On my nightstand I keep…
a glass of water, nothing else. I’m one of these who fall asleep within 5 minutes after they hide under the quilt.

The perfect weekend starts with…
a family breakfast. As a student I live with my parents (the realities here are different than in the USA). Mum works in our hometown but Dad and I we both commute to work/university. Weekend is the only time during a week when we’re all home together in the morning.

My role model is…
I don’t have a role model, in fact I never had one. I just try to live my life wisely and with some plan in my mind. Step by step I’m trying to make it work and helping my wish to come true. Maybe one day I’ll be a role model for somebody else?

Something I always want to be asked in questionnaires like this is…
What is your favourite number?
The answer is 13. Many good things happened to me when it way thirteenth in the calendar. Some Fridays the 13th had an additional portion of luck for me. Black cats are supposed to be hugged, not blamed for our misfortune ;)

me

In the time since Lucas started blogging, he has made an amazing journey. His English has improved incredibly and I really respect and admire him for that.

It will be interesting to see where life will take Lucas and whether his dream to become a perfumer will come true one day. I for one, am sure it will.

Posted in Interview | Tagged , | 24 Comments

Greeeeeeen! – Review: Robert Piguet Futur

Hey Olfactoria’s Travelers,

Portia from Australian Perfume Junkies and Perfume Posse in the Olfactoria house. It’s been warm down under, a bit humid and sticky and I know you guys are in spring in the northern hemisphere so I thought we could talk about one of my go-to warm weather fragrances that also works as a terrific reminder fragrance for times when you think the cold and gloom will never end.

Futur was created by Aurelien Guichard for Robert Piguet in 1960/2009.

Futur Robert Piguet FragranticaPhoto Stolen Fragrantica

Fragrantica gives these featured accords:
Top: Bergamot, neroli, green accords
Heart: Violets, jasmine, ylang-ylang
Base: Vetiver, patchouli and cedar

Aurelien Guichard of Bond #9 Chinatown and Bois Noir also for Piguet (and a slew of others) was the perfumer for the Futur re-release in 2009. A beautiful, fresh and striking fragrance for everyone who likes a little green. Though Futur is not just about green, green is the mast that everything else is tied to.

So quickly, in the first few seconds Futur jumps out of the skin with a zoom. There is a very Chanel No 19 feel to the initial rush which is something I quite like but it doesn’t last so long, maybe a couple of minutes before it calms down and softens out.

The green that lasts is plush, fresh and elegant, you could easily expect this to continue down this road but as soon as you settle into the green adventure everything takes a sideways step into flowers, green feeling flowers giving juicy and sappy a red hot go. While holding onto their green-ness they also add a hint of sensual, buttery and breathy.

No, Futur doesn’t turn into a sex kitten but it does add humanity and a bouquet to the green that is not big but it is noticeable and has quite good atmosphere-changing ability.

You aren’t particularly fragrant and the sillage is noticeable but not in your face, what happens is that Futur creeps from your skin and slowly ambushes people. The person sitting next to you may ask you what fragrance you have on after sitting with them for 5 minutes, unless you’ve hugged hello and she gets a waft of it then and been too busy greeting you to say something.

Futur Robert Piguet green plant PixabayPhoto Stolen Pixabay

I love the heart of Futur, the violets (which are back up singers on my skin) keep the tropical flowers in check and while it is a white floral we are talking muted, not bombastic or outrageous. Futur offers a multifaceted green experience, from deep green scents to light and bright ones. Calm, stately, refined but more casual than 19 and less stark than Nikki de Saint Phalle, but also not a soft floral like 1932 or Anais Anais. Somewhere between these lies Futur and I think it’s the reason it has fallen between the cracks and not found its following as much as those fragrances have.

The dry down for me is green, woody and musky but I miss the patchouli all together, it seems to get totally overlooked in my ride. Birgit says in her review that she gets galbanum in the opening, I get it there but also here at the end. It’s like the flowers needed time to shine in their heart roles but the galbanum comes back to finish the show with a reed/dry grass vetiver and woodsiness that doesn’t really say cedar to me but that could be my complete lack, not the note.

Futur Robert Piguet  kasamy_design DeviantArtPhoto Stolen DeviantArt

I get an OK longevity from Futur, around 4-5 hours before it goes so close to my skin that I can’t smell it but others can for a while, LUSH UltraBalm adds a couple of hours to that. Where do I wear my Futur? I find it fits with casual days, for my work which allows me to be quite fragrant but maybe be careful with your quantities for office work, great date night and especially good for those times in the cool that you want to be reminded of the spring.

Further reading: Olfactoria’s Travels and The Alembicated Genie
FragranceNet has $70/50ml before coupon
The Posh Peasant has samples starting at $4/ml

So Futur doesn’t rate with many perfumistas, have you tried it? Did you enjoy the ride? What about the other Piguet fragrances?

Portia xx

Posted in By Portia, Chypre, Floral, Fragrance Reviews, Green, Robert Piguet | Tagged , , , , , | 19 Comments

Monday Question – What Are The Skeletons In Your Perfume Closet?

Do you have any bottles in your collection that you are not very proud of?

Any “dirty secret” scents?

What are the skeletons in your perfume closet?

question-mark

My Answer:

As a bona fide perfumista, whether in the stages of first infatuation or well-seasoned, we possess a certain arrogance of what is good and what is not. We tend to look down on some perfumes and elevate others to sometime undeserved heights.

Mainstream or designer fragrances often belong in the first category (many deservedly so!!!). But despite our broader horizons when it comes to evaluating perfume and since we just are aware of many more and better perfumes than the general public (although by no means is all niche good, oh the dreck released today in the name of niche, don’t get me started…), we sometimes are almost ashamed of an old fragrant love in our closets or a much reviled new release justs hits the spot for us.

The perfume I love but try to hide behind more fashionable bottles is Dita von Teese. I like the scent, I like the bottle, I even think Dita the woman is very stylish and elegant, but still, if asked what I wear, I inwardly cringe and wish it would be something else.

Shallow of me? Yes. Stupid even? Probably.
But here I am anyway – confessing.

Your turn now! Please confess about the scented skeletons in your closet!

Posted in Monday Question | Tagged , , | 76 Comments