onsdag 30 december 2009

L'Artisan Parfumeur - Al Oudh

A lot of other perfume blogger state that 2009 have been the year of aoud/oudh. And yes, there is a lot of perfume houses that have made an oudh scent this year. Oudh is a very popular ingredient in arabic perfumes and oudh of highest quality is very expensive, and also, very rare. Oudh of highest class is the result of a tree naturally affected by a fungus causing noble rot, but now it is common to affect the trees with the fungus on purpose, giving a little less expensive oudh, but also not the highest grade oudh. for a western nose, oudh can be a challenge since it has a kind of sharp, strange, medical, smoky and hard scent.

Especially Montale is known for their arabian influensed perfumes and their use of oudh in perfumes. Montale´s Red Aoud become a favourite for me, but only after a short training period. Black Aoud is still not agreeable for me, I find it to sharp and watery at the same time (on me). So, even if oudh isn´t a spot on favourite note of mine, I still find it adventurous and interesting. One thing I hope to try next year is the so called attars, an arabic/oriental kind of perfume, often with oudh among the notes.

When trying perfumes with oudh for the first time, I felt a little lost. Oudh can be quite an overwhelming new acquaintance, like listening to music with a strange scale and foreign language, like being lost in the bazaar quarters of an ancient arabic city or like being in the middle of an eastern festival without having a clue of what they are celebrating.

With L'Artisan´s Al Oudh it feels like I´ve found a guide, a key, an attendant. But at first, I am a bit skeptical, and think they could as well have called it Al Cumin instead, because the top notes are overwhelmingly filled with cumin. It is nothing but cumin for the first minutes, and I got a little dissapointed.

After a while, the cumin wears off, and I welcome some sweetness, warmth and complexity. The oudh-note is also there, but kind of subdued. This is a much toned down oudh in compare with the oudh you can find in Montale´s perfumes. And after that cumin dominated top note, the oudh all of a sudden feels soft and comfy, but still with some oriental mystic. I think of Al Oudh as an excellent introduction to oudh, since it is so easy to like. But, the cumin is a turn off for me, thankfully it is shortlived.

For an L'Artisan scent I think Al Oudh has decent staying power, the base note melts down in my skin in a wonderful, soft and very comfy way, but also without any traces of adventures, mystery or oriental enigma. the base note is easy to like and very comfy, but unfortunatly also with lack of strong personality. A little like being guided to the well organised and beautiful hotel far away from the crowded, strange and totally mesmerizing bazaar. Do you want to get lost? Try another oudh scent. Do you like a a comfy introduction? Al Oudh is a great start!

Pic: vittlesvamp

tisdag 29 december 2009

Keyboard breakdown!

This computer is about 8 years old and have survived our big and not that computer-skilled family longer than what seem to be possible.

Right now it is obviously infected with some evil virus, again! I wasn´t supposed to end writing yesterday, but suddenly a lot of signs and letters changed places on the keyboard. Today it seem to work as normal again.

There was some perfumes left to mention.

-M.Micallef´s Gaiac

-Profumum Roma´s Aqua di Sale
-Profumi di Pantelleria´s Approdo
-Nicolas Danila´s Asian Gardens

Well, eveything isn´t just great all the time, ther is sad things happening with perfumes also, such as interesting and beautiful perfumes and even whole perfume lines dissapears. I will miss Ava Luxe´s beautiful perfumes, especially since I haven´t got the chanse to buy all the one´s I wanted to own before she decide to stop making perfumes. Anyway, several of Serena Ava Franco´s scents can be found at Ava Luxe´s Etsy-shop, but in perfume oil.

B Never Too Busy To Be Beautiful is also about to close down. I don´t know if LUSH will carry some of their perfumes in the future. I am glad that I´ve got purse sprays of 1000 Kisses Deep, Breath of God, Keep it Fluffy, Superworldunknown and others.

måndag 28 december 2009

Love, hate and in between

I have survived Christmas this year also. And it was a good Christmas, all the kids seem content even though the daughters had to wait a long time for their parcel from Japan. It was delivered to our door this morning, even though I only paid for air mail, but I guess the seller was a bit late with delivery, so he upgraded it.

No perfumes in Christmas present for me, but I gave some perfumes. Paco Rabannes Black XS for him and for her to my son and his girl friend. And among the things from Japan was two perfumes in tube to the daughters.

Well, even without perfumes in Christmas present I have sniffed quite many perfumes during 2009. I am not sure if I want to know how many. Do you know how many perfumes you tried during 2009.


-Parfumerie Generales Cadjmere
-Hilde Solianis Fraaagoolaa Saalaaata
-By Gilians Back to Black
-Korres Jasmine Pepper Gaiac Wood Passion Fruit
-M.Micallefs Gaiac
-Frapins Esprit de Fleurs
-Grossmiths Shem El Nessim

-Aral Un des Sense
-Profumi di Pantellerias Approdo
-Linga Sharira
-Florascents Umami
-Missoni by Missoni
-Korres Jasmin Pepper Gaiac Wood Passion Fruit

-Nasomattos Black Afgano
-AbdesSalam Attar: Hindu Kush
Cale Fragranze di Autore: Assolo and Tepidarium

-Magickal Realism
-Moxie Beauty
-Smell Bent

-Comme des Garcons Daphne
-Parfums d'Empires Wazamba
-L'Artisans Havana Vanille

-Grossmiths Shem El Nessim
-Frapins Esprit de Fleurs

-AbdesSalam Attars Hindu Kush
Montales Red Aoud

I would have made a longer list, but my key board started to write the wrong signs for some reason!!!

Pic Photos lumpen

tisdag 22 december 2009

Merry Christmas

Now is all Christmas presents bought (except of a parcel I am waiting for from Japan, but there is still time for it to arrive!) and food, candies, fruits and Christmas Must/ Christmas root beer(a sort of soft drink that is very common in Sweden during Christmas time).

The house is cleaned and decorated, even though when it comes to Christmas decorations I am quite minimalistic. With five kids I´ve think it is more important with Christmas presents for them then Christmas decorations.

But closely by, there is a family living that decorate their house with pretty much every kind of lights, mini-bulb strands and twinkling things. So whenever I feel like there isn´t enough Christmas at home I can go and look at their house together with half of the neighborhood. I guess our muslim neighbors think it looks really fascinating.

Well, well whatever you prefer in Christmas styling I want to wish you a really happy, fun, merry, cozy, scented and totally fabulous Christmas!


Pic: White Christmas screen saver

måndag 21 december 2009

Cristobal Balenciaga - Cristobal

I don´t know what your comfort clothes are? But maybe a pair of training trousers and an old t-shirt? Or a pair of worn out jeans and a soft sweater? Maybe that old night gown that is so rugged you really should throw it? Or a soft dress, with socks and a cardigan?

I guess that very few that read my blog have a Balenciaga-dress as comfy clothes. I belive not even Nicole Kidman put her Balenciaga-dresses on when she want´s to feel comfy and soft at home. I am sure she also wears a pair of jeans and a t-shirt from time to time.

By coincidence I´ve got a bottle of Cristobal Balenciaga´s Cristobal in my care. And it smells soooooo good! Cristobal is creamy, warm, oriental perfection. There is no note pointing out or making more noise than the others, everything seem perfectly and seemlessly blended. There are flowers so olfactory beautiful I think of them like a single, big mix between them all-flower of unearthly beauty and heavenly scent. Pair it with the softest, creamiest sandalwood possible and sweet, full-bodied vanilla and just a hint of patchouli to add some depth, woodyness and actually, mystique.

Cristobal as a perfume is the counterpart of a perfect evening dress. Imagine a wonderful dress in heavy silk, in the colour you feel the most comfortable and beauty with, with decor and asseccoars that matches your style, your look and your temper just perfect, imagine an extremly skilled designer at your service, ready to do whatever you wish to make this dress just perfect for you. Like it would feel to wear that dress, it feels to wear Cristobal Balenciaga´s Cristobal. And I am rather convinced that is the closest I will ever come to wear such a dress. And you know what, it doesn´t even matter, since Cristobal manage to create the illusion of me being perfectly dressed when I hamstring around at home in my black jeans, tanktop and hood sweater.

Cristobal is luxurious, elegant, exclusive and smell of richness. At the same time it is easy to like and learn to know. There isn´t any strange edges or trips to olfactory borders. Longlasting and with magnificent sillage of course. Really likeable in every single way.

By the way, it isn´t only Christmas soon, 2009 is about to end as well, and I have start thinking about a kind of perfume top list... don´t miss it!

Pic: Nicole Kidman in a Balenciaga-dress

söndag 20 december 2009

Smell Bent

The one´s I´ve wrote about this far from Smell bent is the one´s I like the best, but there is several worth mentioning.

Blimey, limey is a fresh lime scent. And it is lime that smells like lime, without that soapy scent so usual when it comes to lime. The top note in Blimey, limey is clear and hightuned lime, soon to become more of a Key Lime Pie or Lime-Cheesecake scent. When the base note is all that is left, Blimey, limey smell of creamy white chocolate with some lime/lemon.

Sunshine is also a comfy citrus scent, but with company of a quite dirty musk. After a while it become a little bit weird on me, and I am unsure if I like it or not.

Lemon Cowboy is lemon and leather, and on me it´s mostly lemon, but on my husband it becomes a soft, fresh leathery scent. Much better on husband than on me.

Both my daughters love Elf Fulfilling Prophecy it is like the smell of oatmeal cookies and cinnamon and a little sawdust. Christmasy, spicy and warm, but I think it suits my daughters much better than me.

Little Miss Panda is another strange mix. A hightuned, very clear floral scent that soon got accompanied by a note of soil. Something in this scent reminds both me and the daughters of something in my parents cottage, but I haven´t yet figure out what. Nice, but odd.

Last and least liked, by me, Incensed. Starts off with a note of smoked sausage, so if you´re looking for something that reminds a little fo bacon, this might be it. When the smoked note wears off, there is a soft, sweet note of incensed left and it fails to make an impression on me.

Pic: brightestblue

lördag 19 december 2009

Smell Bent - Hungry, hungry hippies and Gelty Pleasures

It can be quite a challenge to make a true chocolate note in perfume. Even though I´m quite found of chocolate I don´t really have a chocolate scented favourite perfume. Maybe I am not so found of the idea walking around and smelling like chocolate or maybe there isn´t any chovlate scent just good enough.

Smell bent offers two choclate scented perfume oils, Hungry, hungry hippies and Gelty Pleasures.

They´ve got the chocolate in common, but a part from that they are quite different. Hungry, hungry hippies are supposed to smell like pot brownies with a little cassia and also, after a while the smell of nice, woody patchouli. I think of Hungry, hungry hippies like a dark, bitter, herby and woody chocolate scent. The youngest daughter think that it smells like chocolate and rhubarb pie, and actually the smell of rhubarb pie and hashish is quite similar, now when I´ve start thinking about it.

I recommend lovers of dark chocolate to try Hungry, hungry hippies, I guess this could be right up your alley.

Gelty Pleasures (limited edition) is an other sort of chocolate. Sweeter, creamier and more gourmand. This is a chocolate scent for lovers of smoth milk chocolate. Gelty Pleasures is milk choclate and amber, really, really delicious. Even though I like them both, I think that I prefer Gelty Pleasures, because it is so pure chocolaty.

I haven´t yet tried, but most of Smell Bents scenst are quite simple, so i think they will layer well with each other. Like Gelty Pleasures with blimey Limey for instant, I think it could be so jummy. I guess I´ve got something to do after Christmas if I get bored. :)

Pic: experience chocolate

torsdag 17 december 2009

Smell Bent - Hippie Holidaze

I think that I´ve died and come to hippie heaven. No, not really but not far from either. I´ve put on a drop of Smell Bent´s Hippie Holidaze. And it smells sooooooo incredible good!

Nothing strange. It is tangerine, patchouli and maple syrup. The tangerine note is one of the most true and genuin tangerine notes I´ve encountered. And this time of year I eat a lot of tangerines so I´ve got something to compare it with. Well, first of I smell like I´ve peeled a pile of tangerines and then the patchouli joins, and this is soft, gentle patchouli that accentuate the tangerine nicely, rather then dominate it. And it isn´t woody, brisk or herby patchouli, but instead soft, warm and velvety patchouli. I guess the maple syrup bring those qualities in front. Because the scent of maple syrup is hardly noticeable, I think it´s "only" contribute with sweetness, warmth and richness.

Of course Hippie Holidaze isn´t the most complicated scent I have encountered, but it might be one of the nicest, happiest and coziest. And that is what all of my family thinks as well, we have fight over the little sample. My husband vene had it on the Christmas party with the work AND his work mates asked him what fragrance he had! Usually he wear Musc Ravegeur at festive occations, so you might guess how good he thinks Hippie Holidaze smell.

Hippie Holidaze is a holiday special at Smell Bent, so if you like to smell it you better be quick, at least I will order a big bottle of it while there is time! It smells so good and it makes me and my whole family happy, and that isn´t so bad is it?

At first I only ordered 3 Smell Bent samples at Luckyscent, but they was so jummy that I´ve ordered most of the other perfume oils directly from Smell Bent, and I must confess that it is incredible nice to test them (even though i don´t like all of them as much).

By the way, it is snowing here, so much that it´s hard to open the front door. How is your pre-Christmas weather?

Pic: grand grrl,flickr

Smell Bent - Commando

For some reason I ordered some samples of perfume oils when i placed my last order at Luckyscent. OK, I´ve got a weak spot for perfume oils, but when thinking about what there is to chose from at Luckyscent, I even surprised myself by ordering perfume oils.

As you know, I also ordered samples from L'Artisan and Boaddicea, but... to be honest, the samples with perfume oils are the one´s I have appreciate the most. Three little samples of perfume oils from Smell Bent, here you find their homepage (and you can prder a sample pack with five samples for only 15 dollar) : http://www.smellbent.com/smell_bent_says_%22seasons_greetings%22.html

Over all, everything about Smell Bent is worth liking. The prices are really affordable, a bottle of 8 ml perfume oil for 20 dollar. Shipping (to Sweden) is also a nice surprise (4-5 dollar). And the bottles look so cute and can cher anyone up a cold winter day. And the scents... oooh, they are so cute, happy, fine and nice in every possible way. OK, maybe not the most complex scents, but sometimes it doesn´t have to be so complex!

If you like perfume oils, you have to pay a visit to Smell Bent. Or, you can also buy most of their scents through Luckyscent if that is feeling better. If you usually not that found of perfume oils, I still think you should give at least one little sample a try. If that doesn´t make your heart melt, I guess you´re really cold hearted. Please, please order just a small sample and become surprised! (No, I am not payed by Smell Bent to tell you this)

Right now I am wearing Smell Bents Commando on one of my wrists, and appearantly, commando means to be without underwear. I don´t know anything about such things, but I know that Commando is an interesting and well, yes... interesting perfume oil with musk. Commando is a mix between different kinds of musk, clean and dirty ones. I would call Commando for a musk on the rocks, since it is such a pure, unblenden musk scent. It is both warm and cold, clear and dirty, comfy and crispy and yes, really, really nice if you´re in to musk.

I suspect that different people bring forward different kinds of musk in Commando, on me it become quite soft, warm and a little animalic. But I can smell the clean, white musk as well. Commando is quite linear until the base note, when you can detect the tonka bean, giving it even more depth, warmth and a little green spicyness. Very nice. Very good. I would bury my nose in my wrist at this point.

Commando would probably do well as a base scent if you like to play with layering. It could give a little power to almost anything, since it is so neutral. It is in itself quite close to skin and discrete, but that is the point with musk. I belive that if you put on Commando and try to forget about it, you would belive that your skin have the most wonderful smell al by itself after about 7-8 hours!

Commando as a musk scent, isn´t really as magic as my musky favourites Mausc Koublai Khan from Serge Lutens or Musc Ravegeur from Frederic Malle, but I think it manage to get itself some room close to Ava Luxe´s Nude Musk though. This is a musk scent I would never to be without in my collection, and for that price i wouldn´t either!

Pic: flaeskdansen

onsdag 16 december 2009

We have a winner!

Congratulations to Clivia! Send me your adress to my mail: canyffakhan@hotmail.com

The quicker I´ve got it the bigger is the chanse that you get your little parcel before Christmas.

And to the rest of you I have to wish better luck next time.

måndag 14 december 2009

A special day and a Merry Christmas-draw

Today me and my husband are celebrating that we have been married for 20 years. Today will start with a walk with the dog and then some piece and quiet before the evening. We are going to a restaurant, maybe Indian? And then it´s off the the beautiful little town theatre with the youngest daughter on stage. And for wedding present I will have a bottle of Bois Farine (L'Artisan): Yes, I know I use to complain about L'Artisans lack of scent and staying power, but Bois Farine lasts pretty decent on me, even though it´s still discrete. I had to decide between some different perfumes, but I think Bois Farine is the one most different from the rest of my collection.

The Christmas is closing in more and more, and I thought that I would send a little present to ONE of my blog-readers. It is a sample pack with little this and that: 3,5 ml sample (more like a mini bottle) of Eau de Campagne, Sisley. A small (about 2 ml left) spray decant of Le Basier du Dragon, Cartier. A small sample box (1,2 ml) from Acqua di Parma consisting of: Arancia di Capri, Mandorlo di Sicilia, Cipresso di Toscana, Fico di Amalfi och Mirto do Panarea (I don´t know how much there is left in each sample). A spray sample(1,5 ml) of Ineke´s Field Notes from Paris in a cute little box. Two samples from Hilde Soliani, SAaliiiSssiiMO and Il Tuo Tulipano. And a small bottle about 2 ml with Arabian Gardens from Nicolas Danila. Maybe I will send some little surprise as well.

NOTE! All samples are used, some very lightly and some of them a little more. Some fo them are easy to find and some of them are a little more rare. I will send all the samples to one reader, no matter if it´s here at the swedish blog or the english. For international readers, don´t expect the parcel to arrive before Christmas, but for readers in Sweden I will try to post it on friday so it will reach you before Christmas. I will draw one lucky winner, here or at the english blog, tomorrow morning 9 o´clock (CET).

Good Luck!

Pic: mjcraftsdesign

söndag 13 december 2009

L'Artisan Parfumeur - Havana Vanille

When I was really small (4-5 years) I was during a period of time very afraid of invisible thieves. My parents of course tried to convince me that there wasn´t any invisible thieves or any other invisible humans. But I doubt what they said, how can someone know for sure when they are invisible?

Later on, there was a TV-show, "The Invisible Man" and this was a long time after I had been afraid of invisible thieves, but the theme still fascinated me. To become visible the invisible man wrapped himself up in clothes, hat and sunglasses.

Maybe that is what would make Havana Vanille to be a little more concrete? Of course, a perfume isn´t really invisible, rather scentless and a scentless perfume loses the point of being a perfume...?

No, of course Havana Vanille isn´t scentless, but it is so subtle and subdued it almost drive me insane! Because, the scent I can smell, is heavenly!

Havana Vanille is kind of an aquatic vanilla scent. In it´s subtle character it remind me of CdG 3, but while CdG 3 make me chase around in an imaginary jungle to find a rare flower, Havana Vanille rather make me float around in a waste ocean and chase after the luch tropical island where vanilla orchids grow and happy pirates drinks rhum and sings happy pirate songs.

But no, of course I never make it to that island. I have to seattle with paddle around in the water without any hope to smell the wonderful scent up close. In despair I have already used about half of my sample. I wonder how it would differ if I had a spray sample?

Havana Vainlle is impossible to catch, and when I try to sniff my wrist I smell less rather than more. It´s best when I´m not thinking about it and little whiffs of heavenly scent occurs now and then.

Everything about Havana Vanille is minimalistic.

During my post I had to walk the dog. It is snowing lightly outside and little whiffs of Havana Vanille mixed with the falling snow. It was like being in a fairy tale of vanilla smelling snow flakes. Swoon. :)

Pic: The Invisible, Movie Poster

Christmas preparations

I would have been happy to show you a pic of all the Swedish thins (ginger snaps, but not really) that me and the kids have baked today, but I can´t find the camera.

We have also baked saffron buns. It´s a Christmas tradition to bake, even though I´m not bake so many different kind of cookies and so on. Usually I stick with the thins and the buns, some years I do a kind of stars filled with plum jam and also some spicy bread.

Of course we have to had some Christmas candy as well, snaps (swedish hard toffee "knäck") and something filled with calories and chocolate like fudge or ice confect.

And the Christmas food, Christmas ham, meat balls, janssons delight, pickled herring, sausages and a little of this and that.

What is the mort important food or goodies for you at Christmas time?

Swedish Christmas food- and cakes and candies have a thing in common, the use of a lot of spices, which make the food smelling very, very good, and very, very much. So during this weekend my perfume use has been quite modest and also, quite surprising.

I´ve got a parcel with samples, among them some samples from famous L'Artisan (yes, Havanna Vanille among them) and maybe not as well-knowned, but still storied brand, Boadicea the Victorius, from which Michelle Obama have bought several perfumes.

I think it´s quite amazing that I can wear the same perfumes as USAs first lady (I wonder if she worn some of them during the Nobel price ceremony in Oslo?), but even more amazing is the fact that I´ve got these reputable perfume samples, and still I chose to drench me and the whole family with some perfume oils from a pretty much unknown company (at least compared to the other one´s).

Yes, I promise to write more about these ravishing perfume oils later, I just had to order more samples from that company, so you have to wait until I´ve tried them as well. And i sure hope they´ll be here fast!

torsdag 10 december 2009

Grossmith - Shem El Nessim

Finally! Yes, finally I´ve got to write about my big favourite among the Grossmith fragrances, Shem-El-Nessim.

The Nobel festivities is over for this time, appearantly the world was more excited about the Norwegian ceremony since Barack Obama got the Nobel Peace Price. But, anyway, the Swedish royalties was much better dressed than the Norwegian royalties.

In the pic above i think our Crown princess Victoria looks great, and to that outfit Shem-El-Nessim from Grossmith would wear perfectly. Overall I think that Shem-El-Nessim would do great on the Crown Princess, but until she realises that I can have until then.

Shem-El-Nessim is exactly my kind of scent. And I want more of it! It starts with a blast of slightly bitter citrus and loud flowers, to start with it is like a small explosion. Soon it lay to rest on my skin, if Hasu-No-Hana and Phul-Nana sparkles and shines, Shem-El-Nessim more of melts in to my skin in a wonderful way.

It´s the most discrete of them, but still, in long run, the one that manage to make the strongest impression. Don´t get me wrong, non of Grossmith fragrances are discrete. Compared to much else Shem-El-Nessim is a HUGE floral, but in comparision to her "sisters" the softest.

Originally created in 1906, about 7-8 years before my grand mothers was born, I belive they would have loved Shem-El-Nessim and still, I don´t think of it as dated at all. There is a youthful, happy touch in Shem-El-Nessim. It´s kind of light-hearted.

Pretty soon, Shem-El-Nessim become very powdery, soft, white powder with a wonderfully saturated scent of orris (iris) and some other flowers, i can smell the most delicate rose in there and a little hint of jasmine. If you usually don´t like podery perfumes, i guess Shem-El-Nessim isn´t anything for you. But if you do, Shem-El-Nessim is a must try! Shem-El-Nessim joins my absolute favourite powdery perfumes with ease. Iris Poudre is a little warmer and softer, Kenzo amour Le Parfum is a little sharper and heavier, Lounges Profanes is a bit more daring and modern, but Shem-El-Nessim could be the most luxurious and elegant of them.

Just like the other scents from Grossmith, Shem-El-Nessim has extreme staying power and a huge sillage. The base is creamy, warm, powdery perfection, with a hint of heliotrope giving a weak, but lovely cherry note. I think the heliotrope also contribute to the disctinct scent of make-up in Shem-El-Nessim, there is hints of lipstick in Shem-El-Nessim.

As you guess, I am totally pro-Shem-El-Nessim and now I know what perfume to wear on my childrens wedding, or at least on the closest one. This is my first choise as a wedding perfume from now on.

Pic: Swedish Crown princess Victoria

Grossmith - Phul Nana

We overslept this morning! And with one and a half hour also! Horrible and the youngest daughter became really upset and did n´t want to go to school at all. Maybe we should overslept a little more often so that the kids would get used to it? As far as I can remember this is the first time since we moved here (more than five years ago) that we overslept this bad. So now I sit here and it feels like nine o´clock but it´s really half past ten.

It was a reader of the blog that wondered what the names of Grossmith´s perfumes means, and that is quite interesting so; Hasu-No-Hana is "the scent of Japanese Lotus Lily". Phul-Nana means "Lovely flower" in hindi and Shem-El-Nessim is arabic for "smelling the breeze".

Today I´m going to introduce Phul-Nana for you. It was originally introduced 1891 and it is something quite uncommon, a bit of a fougére scent for ladies. Unfortunatly, Phul-Nana is the one of them that doesn´t suit me at all. It become very strong, stale and almost sour on my skin. Despite that I can still smell that Phul-Nana is a perfume with exquisist ingredienses and superior quality. On the right women it will probably become grand, majestic and refined. Among the Swedish royal ladies I think it´s only Queen Silvia that could pull it off.

Of the three scents from Grossmith Phul-Nana is the only I think of as dated, both Hasu-No-Hana and Shem-El-Nessim could be scents created by a gifted and dedicated perfumer today, but Phul-Nana smells like it has been around for a while, and since it has, I really think it´s ok.

Phul-Nana could very well become the most loved of them among perfume lovers that appreciate the magnificent, classic vintages.

Phul-Nana is a great feminine scent, with a lot of dark, dense base and I think my mother could like it, so maybe there´s where my sample end up?

Already in the opening Phul-Nana is quite bitter and herby. This stays through the whole scent, and the heart of geranium, tuberose and ylang ylang is well blended and no note seem to dominate on me.

When I am wearing Phul-Nana I feel like a little girl dressed up in my mothers most elegant clothes, her make-up and party shoes and wearing her most expensive perfume. Phul-Nana are remarkable longlasting and with great sillage.

Pic: Swedish Queen Silvia during Nobel Price Festivities 2007

tisdag 8 december 2009

Grossmith - Hasu No Hana

Once every year in a small kingdom far away in the Northern parts of Europe the Royal family host a magical event, a glorious feast and award the worlds leading scientists with a prestigious price, the Nobel price.

No, that´s not really true, it is the Swedish Nobel foundation that nominate the scientists that have serve the humanity the best during the years and it is the foundation that give out the award. Except of the price in literature, which is selected by the Swedish Academy society. But, the Swedish Royal family is a big and important part of the festivities taking place in Stockholm Cityhall the 10th of December every year, since 1901.

In Sweden, each year, there is a lot of talking about the Royal family´s outfits during the Nobel Festivities, mostly the ladies clothes of course. And they´re supposed to look like traditional royalty, not to old fashioned but not to daring either. There have been some complains about Princesse Madeleine´s decolletage, not only during the Nobel Price festivities.

I wonder what perfume the royal ladies use to wear during the Nobel-party? I sure hope they chose perfume with the same importance as the clothes. Well, if they´re unsure about what perfumes to wear I found something for them!

Grossmith, London is an old, beneficiate perfume house that have been of the track for several years, but now, Simon Brooke, great great grandson of founder John Grossmith has brought it back to life. With Roja Dove (world famous perfume professor and perfume expert) as mentor Grossnith now have re-created some of their classic perfumes; Hasu-No-Hana (originally created 1888), Phul-Nana (1891) and Shem-El-Nessim(1906).

The past days it is those interpretions of perfumes with more than a hundreds years of age I have been busy with. And honestly, only to read about the house Grossmith´s history and really trying to sink in to the perfumes make me feel reverent.

Of course I can´t judge how true to the original they are, but as I understand the original recepies are used, but with some modification accordning to modern laws such as how much of certain ingredience a perfume is allowed to have. In my opinion all the perfumes smells belivable, classic, elegant and timeless rather than old fashioned and dusty, which is a good thing.

Hasu-No-Hana is a voluptuous, warm, spicy and radiant floral bouquet scent. The opening is tsrong and powerful with huge sillage. I promise you won´t need much of it, a few sprays are just enough. In quality and richness I think Grossmith fragrances are similar to Amouage, there is no doubt about that high quality ingrediences are used.

Hasu-No-Hana is the oldest of the three scents, but I think it would fit Princess Madeleine (the youngest princess) really good. Hasu-No-Hana is a perfume for a women comfortable of being in the center of attention, a beautiful, confident but also a little conservative. Hasu-No-Hana is stunning, strong, glamorous, saturated and magnetic. In the heart of the scent, the rose is center piece, a strong, spicy and almost oriental rose. But, it´s the base note I like the most, it goes on forvere and ever, and it´s a soft, creamy miracle of subdued spices and almost gourmandlike qualities. A really gorgues scent, with sursrisingly modern character.

One spray on my wrist and one in the decolletage is enough to shine all night long with Hasu-No-Hana. And, the lasting power is excellent with Hasu-No-Hana, even a bath couldn´t take the scent of the basenote away, it still lasted hours on me. I think that the longvity on this and the others could be 24 hours or something like that!

I think Grossmith perfumes would be very interesting for people that like Amouage´s perfumes, the sense of quality and richness are the same, even though Grossmith scents feels more European than Amouage.

As you might figure, Hasu-No-Hana isn´t really a perfume for the office or whenever you feel like being a little cozy. No, Hasu-No-Hana is a perfume for festivities, weddings and if you like, a perfect scent if you would like to feel radiant and glowing an ordinary grey and rainy day in december somewhere in Sweden or anywhere else.

More about Grossmith you can find here: http://www.grossmithlondon.com/

Pic: Swedish Princess Madeleine

måndag 7 december 2009

A little this and that

I thought I would have a perfume to write about today, but sorry, you have to wait a little while. Anyway i am about to test some perfumes that are both interesting and a little different from what I usually like. Some associations I´ve got: majestic, radiant, elegant, klassic, timeless, large, expensive. Does it sound interesting? Yes, it is, but I have to learn to know them a little better first.

Otherwise it has been a hectic but nice weekend. The grand son had his 2 year party on saturday so we visited Örebro and have really fun at the Skojlandet (Fun Land, with slides, climibing frames, trampolines and other cool stuff), but guess if I have pain in strange places now?

Yesterday we finally manage to have the daughter in law on dinner. The pregnancy doesn´t show yet, but this week they are going and have an ultrasound so they will see their little baby for the first time. And the daughter in law wish for a 3D ultrasound in Christmas present, and I think it sounds really cool.

It´s the beginning of Christmas time and there sure is a lot of things, a part from perfumes, that smells really, really nice. For instant owen roasted root vegetables. I have to give you a recepie (and no, this is not going to become food blog, I promise).

Christmas smelling root vegetables (serves about 6)

1 kg carrots
1-2 swedish (!) turnips or swede (strange)
1 big parsnip
maybe (but not that important) 1 celeriac
Some potatoes

Peel the root veggies, leave the potato to last. Shred them in to small french fries size. Put some oil in a big owen pan and spread the veggies. Then spice them with one dash of ginger, one dash of cloves, and at least 3-4 dashes of cinnamon. Mix around a little. Put them in the middle of the owen, 225 C for about 40-50 minutes, stir them some times during preparation. Salt them a little when finnished.

This is simple, good, cheap, healthy and smell and tastes delicious. Serve the root vegetables to beefs, chicken and with some good sauce (but not to tasty).

This is so good, that I actually ate the left overs for breakfast!

torsdag 3 december 2009

Hilde Soliani - DoolciiisssiMO

Firts of all i want to apologize for misunderstanding Hilde Solianis name.

And when it comes to DoolciiisssiMO it is as good to surrender, since it is an extremly well made tobacco scent just as Bell'Antonio.

As I wrote yesterday, they´ve got some things in common. The central tobacco note seem to be the same in both of them and the lasting power and sillage is also great in both Bell'Antonio and DoolciiisssiMO. But, Bell'Antonio is sharper smokier and with notes of coffee while DoolciiisssiMO is a more soft, warm and sweet tobacco scent.

The scent of tobacco in DoolciiisssiMO make me think about old times tobacco commercial, when tobacco was considered sophisticated, modern and even healthy. DoolciiisssiMO has a happy, carefree and sunny character like an interprention of tobacco before cancer warnings and the danger with passive smoking.

DoolciiisssiMO is a tobacco fragrance with sweet, warm and golden gourmand character. Instead of notes of coffee, smoke and ashes there is notes of cherry and vanilla. Just shining through now and then and never dominating. Just as Bell'Antonio you can think of DoolciiisssiMO as quite a simple tobacco scent, but little by little I discover how the different notes plays in and out of each other in a very interesting way.

DoolciiisssiMO is more of an comfort scent than Bell'Antonio, it is perfcet to wrap yourself with now when the cold is here. Bell'Antonio has more atmosphere and I think it would be an excellent room scent as well. If I had to chose between them, I think I would go for DoolciiisssiMO as I find it to be a little closer to my taste then Bell'Antonio.

Pic: Vintage Lucky Strike ad

onsdag 2 december 2009

Hilde Solani - Bell'Antonio

Hilde Solani really know how to work tobacco scents. I do like bot Bell'Antonio and DoolciiisssiMO, but while DoolciiisssiMO smells immensly good and comfy, Bell'Antonio manage to evoke memories.

Bell'Antonio smells like real cigarettes and coffee. And reminds me of my dad. How many haven´t got a dad that both smoked and drinked coffee? Nowadays my father have quit smoking, but he still drink coffee.

At first I think of Bell'Antonio as quite a simple tobacco scent, but after a while I understand that it is more complex then I first thought. When smelling it up close I cen fell several aspects of tobacco, both the tobacco of an unlighted cigarette as well as the cigerette smoke, even the smell of ashtry can be found in it, even though kind of weak. Lingering around all this there is the note of really good, black italian coffee. Bell'Antonio is an unsweet almost besque scent on me, but still works very well with my skin chemistry. Intended for men, I think it is a must try for any women interested in genuin and true tobacco scents.

The coffee note weakens little by little and the tobacco note becomes softer, dryer and even a little sweeter without being sweet. The lasting power is great and the sillage is also great even though I have dabbed it I belive I smell like if I have smoke? If that´s a good or bad thing I supppose it´s up to you to decide.

Bell'Antonio is a belivable, genuin and masterly made tobacco scent. But I think I like DoolciiisssiMO just as much, it reminds of Bell'Antonio but is also a totally different type of tobacco.

Pic: Smoking cigarette

tisdag 1 december 2009

Hilde Solani - CiocoRosissimo

Rose scents aren´t always that easy to connect with. Among my absolute favourite perfumes there isn´t that many rose scents. But now I might have found another.

Hilde Solani´s CiocoRosissimo is something very interesting and nice, a rose and chocolate scent. Some of my favourite rose scents are gourmands, so CiocoRosissimo is right up my alley. CiocoRosissimo reminds a little of L'Artisan´s Safran Troublant, but of course with chocolate instead of safron.

The chocolate in CiocoRosissimo is a dark, saturated chocolate note, in style a bit similar to the chocolate note in Parfumerie Generale´s Musc Maori. But while I find Musc Maori to become a little suffocating and overly sweet after some time, CiocoRosissimo don´t behave the same way. No, it manage to balance the creamy, smoth note of chocolate with a little sharper note of rose in a tempting way.

Despite the balance between rose and chocolate, there is a little disturbance in CiocoRosissimo and that is a hint of soap in it. Still it smells mostly chocolate and rose, and the soap note is just barely noticeable, I even think it smells good. I do belive some skin chemistry can make the soap note stronger, so have that in mind.

With that said, I still like CiocoRosissimo, it is a soft, creamy, just enough sweet rose-chocolate scent. Do you like Safran Troublant or Musc Maori, then you probably also would like CiocoRosissimo.

It is longlasting and with good sillage. The base notes becomes soft, powdery and dominated by the rose scent, the chocolate and soap notes are almost gone.

Pic: Interrose.com.uk

måndag 30 november 2009

Hilde Solani - ACQuiilssSSIMA

I´ve wrote about a jasmine perfume for angels (T.Mugler´s Alien) and about a jasmine perfume for elf princesses (Parfumerie Generale´s Drama Nuui) and now it´s time to write about a jasmine scent for mermaids. Well, I know that if a mermaid would be presented for a bottle of perfume she would think it was as strange as the mermaid above find the shoe. And... even worse, mermaids seem to be non-existing for real.

But if they would exist and for some strange reason would use perfume, I am sure that Hilde Solani´s ACQuiilssSSIMA would be a perfume that mermaids would like.

The italians seem to make very good and realistic interprentions of the sea in perfumes. Two of my sea favourites are italian, profumum Roma´s Aqua di sale and Profumi di Pantelleria´s Approdo and ACQuiilssSSIMA dare I suggest, is about to enter the very top of auqatic perfumes.

Now, I have to admit that this season isn´t the best for trying cool, wet and subdued aquatic perfumes, but I promise to take care of my little sample, since I am convinced it will come to more frequent use when we´re heading towards summer.

When I try (dab, not spray) ACQuiilssSSIMA I do feel that I am missing something in the opening, something vaguely warm and spicy, that just escape me. Instead the scent develop rather fast to some cooling waves, maybe with something a little minty as well? As an aquatic scent it´s quite beliveable. The sea of Hilde Solani is turqoise, the waves are crowned with white foam, but kind of calm waves, absolutly no storm. The water in ACQuiilssSSIMA is incredible clear, fishes swims around corals under the surface and maybe there is a mermaid escaping down to the deepth...
ACQuiilssSSIMA is first about water and sea, but after a while you can sense a scent of jasmine, at first very vaugue, but slowly more and more concrete.

It´s like the water is slowly retreat and leave a gorgeus smelling jasmine base note. And it is jasmine so soft, clean and delicate that I´ve never smelled it´s like. And despite the scents very soft and easy character it is very longlasting. I tried it an evening and when I wake up the smell of jasmine was still there and not even weak. If you´re curious about all kinds of jasmine varietys in perfume, Hilde Solani´s ACQuiilssSSIMA is a must try. It is a very unique jasmine scent.

As I said, I think warmer weather can do this scent more justice, but even though it isn´t optimal to try it in november it goes straight up to the top among both aquatic and jasmine scents for me.

Pic: La Vie Parisienne, flickr

lördag 28 november 2009

Christmas is closing in...

In the US my American perfume friends recently celebrated Thanksgiving. About a month earlier they celebrate Halloween, a feast we´ve halfly import to Sweden. Not so appreciated by older people, but really popular among kids and young people.

Earlier we had big autumn holidays in Sweden to. Mikkels mass in the end of september and All Saints day in the end of october, ok it´s still common to decorate the graves this weekend, but there isn´t much to celebrate.

No, in Sweden and many other European countries, Christmas is the only holliday to look forward to during all the long, grey, rainy, cold, snowy, wet and boring autumn. Maybe we would be a little less Christmas hysterical if we had some other feast to celebrate during autumn?

I think I am about halfway hysterical when it comes to Christmas. I´ve start looking at Christmas gifts and love to decide what present that would be the best for each and everyone. A nice thing is that my oldest son specific want´s a perfume in Christmas present. He get one last Christmas and that must have been a success, since he want´s one agian. He even asked for a perfume to his girlfriend as well. I have some plans, something youthful, quite cherful but also really cool.

Of course I wish perfume for myself also. My husband thinks it´s best that I chose and he give me money. Oh, how hard it is to decide. Shall I buy one big bottle or several a little cheaper or a lots of decants or one perfume and one dress or...??? It´s not easy.

Otherwise I sit here and smell a wonderful perfume. A Hilde Solani perfume that is. You will read quite a deal about Hilde Solani´s perfumes here at the blog soon. Don´t miss it!

torsdag 26 november 2009

Lalique - Perles de Lalique

Some scents are hard to describe even tough I like them. Perles de Lalique is one of those scents. It isn´t the kind of fragrance I usually enjoys to wear, and it isn´t so interesting or different that I can´t resist it either. Perles de Lalique just is.

Perles de Lalique is one of the most elegant perfumes that I know of and also appreciate. It´s kind of rare for me to feel like I want to be elegant. Perles de Lalique is also kind of conservative, there isn´t anything progressive, experimental or odd about it. It is classic, soft, elegant, discrete, beautiful but also sexy. Yes, perles de lalique is really sexy, but as for from slutty sexy as it is possible to be.

The rose in it is very soft, restrained and cool like a white rose growing in the snow. The note of white pepper is contributing to the cold, but also very aromatic, dry and beautiful feeling. Perles de Lalique do deserve it´s name, cause this is a fragrance that would wear really nice together with a classic, elegant pearl necklace. Perles de Lalique is well-groomed nails with mother of pearl glossy nude nailcolour. It is gorgeus silk underwear soft as water. Or like a spiderweb in the wood covered with dew drops. Powdery sherness. Tailormade. Rye blonde hair in a simple knot.

Perles de Lalique is something of a chameleon. It works at the office, but also on your wedding. It would do for party, but also for casual. But, it doesn´t really suit me, still I like it. Why?

Pic: beautiful-spider-web01

måndag 23 november 2009

D.S and Durga - Beartrapper

Already the ancient greeks tried to humanise the animals. In Aesop´s (620 b.C-560 b.C) fables we can read moralizing stories with animals in the main characters. Animals are also main characters in some of the most loved fairytales as H.C Andersen´s "The ugly duckling" and some of the Grimm Brothers stoires as well. And we shouldn´t even mention Walt Disney and all the animals in his cartoons and moivies. Some other well knowned animlas we can find in C.S Lewis and his books about Narnia.

Yes,yes, yes I have probably mentioned Narnia before, but those books was really my biggest favourites during a part of my childhood. The sieblings that becomes kings and queens, the great lion Aslan, the mouse Rippipip, the faun Mr Tumnus, the horses, the donkey Pussel and Mr and Mrs Beaver with their cozy little beaver hut.

When trying the perfumes from D.S & Durga, Rosa Americana is the one capturing my attention at first, it´s beautiful and unique at onve. Cowboy Grass and Cowgirl Grass are free spirited scents with a lot of waste land, herbs and grasses in it. Beartrapper is a little more diffcult to come close. Even though I am wearing other perfumes in between, it stays in the back of my head and kind of gnawls! Beartrapper is reminding me of something, but still it is totally strange..

Beartrapper is marketed towards men, yes, it´s quite masculine, but I can´t stay away from it. Beartrapper is presented as originally being an old alchemy recepie used to trap bears. And, yes that says a lot about the scents character.

Beartrapper is jagged, strong, smokey, animalic, pungent, lingering and oh so homy. Yes, there is something really cozy and familiar about it.

All homes have thier own very special smell, home smell like home. When visiting your parents it´s also smell like home, but home a long time ago. Your closest friends and relatives homes also smell familiar and nice, but not really as home.

Beartrapper also smells like someones home... but who... where... no, I can´t really get it! But after thinking about it a coupple of days the coin drops. Ooooooh, it smells like it could have smelled at the Beavers hut in Narnia! If you just know how I imagine how it would be like to visting human-like animals in their homes when I was reading Narnia! Everything at the beavers home (and Mr Tumnus home as well) looks so homy, cozy and familiar but still with thing typical for beavers and fauns.

No, I can´t get enough of Beartrapper. It smells like being at a dear friends home, a dear friend that happens to be an animal. (Sorry for this, but I can´t really help where my association takes me!)

There is a fire crackling in the fireside, the smell of old well used wooden furniture, oiled leather, the dinner is soon to be ready, a stew with strange spices and herbs. The room is dimly lit, with the light from the fire and some oil lamps burning. It is murky, aromatic and so totally homy at the same time!

Yes, among the scents from D.S & Durga, Beartrapper manage to win my heart the most. It´s wonderful as a perfume, but imagine it... like a room scent or a scented candle. I would be first in line to buy it!

Beartrapper have a little more potent sillage, but it´s last about as long as the others from D.S & Durga, decent, but not that long. On the other hand, I don´t need to go around and smell like the beavers hut for such a long time. Oh, and Beartrapper is also my husbands favourite from D.S & Durga, so the precious drops in the little sample is down to half!

Pic: From Narnia, Beavers hut

lördag 21 november 2009

D.S and Durga - Cowboy Grass

If Cowgirl Grass is the fresh, juicy aspects of grass, Cowboy Grass is the dry. Dry grass is hay, but it becomes so much more than hay in Cowboy Grass. Dried herbs, leather and dirt and some tar.

I find Cowboy Grass to be a distant relative to Tauer´s Lonestar memories, but easier to wear and like. D.S & Durga´s Cowboy Grass is a light masculine scent of an endless prairie with dry grass and other aromatic prairie weeds. Cowboy Grass is grass that dry that it´s crush when you rub it between your fingers and leave traces of a warm, comfy scent.

Even tough Cowgirld Grass has a richness in scent, Cowboy Grass is even richer, and also more complex without being hard to wear. Cowboy Grass make me feel both adventourus and calm at the same time. It´s atranquile scent, almost monotone, like travelling trough a vaste landscape that doesn´t change so mych. At least not on the syrface, like watching it from a car/train windor or by horse. But if you walk the same way, you will notice every little change.

The warm, aromatic scent of Cowboy Grass seem to have a little better lasting power than Cowgirl Grass on me, now when I try both of them side by side, the arm with Cowboy Grass is dominating after about 2 hours.

My husband has also tried Cowboy Grass, but on him, it stands in the shadow of Tauer´s Lonetstar Memories, but on the other hand he seem to have found a new favourite among D.S & Durga´s scents, Beartrapper.

Pic: David Koslowski, flickr

D.S and Durga - Cowgirl Grass

It´s hard to decide wich to start with, when it comes to D,S & Durga´s Cowgirl Grass and Cowboy Grass. To me, they´re both very far apart interprentions of the same thing, namely grass. They´re both what I would call unisex-scent, rather than masculine or feminine. Cowgirl Grass a little more at the feminine side and Cowboy Grass, well you can guess, a tiny bit masculin.

When trying Cowgirl Grass and Cowboy Grass I become curious to explore grass more thouroughly. I do not mean anything but ordinary grass that grows on the lawn or the meadow. Both of the Grass-varieties make me realise what complex scents there can be in just a tiny tuffet of grass.

Cowgirl Grass is the fresh, dewy kind of grass. Like lying on the back in dewy summer grass with the blue sky with little clouds on above. Butterflies and bumblebees flies around you and the smell of grass is strong, fresh, weedy and with some floral notes as well. It´s like I have tuffet iof grass in my hands and the smell is juicy green, almost as if I´ve got grass in my mouth. I am sure most of us have tried to eat grass some time?

When the scent develops it becomes stronger, dryer (but never dry) and warmer. De weak floral notes becomes a little stronger, but still, it´s a green scent with some floral, not the other way around. Cowgirl Grass is interesting, genuin but also comfy. Lazy and relaxed like a summer day, but also unique and personal. During the dry down Cowgirl Grass got a little more perfumed character, a little more feminine as well.

Cowgirl Grass has medium sillage and decent longvity, about 4 hours on me, even tough little traces of it last for about 6 hours.

I do like Cowgirld Grass, but I like Cowboy Grass even more.

Pic: home and garden

torsdag 19 november 2009

D.S and Durga - Rosa Americana

Do you like rosehip soup? I do not like it that much, but now and then I´ve got cravings for it, and then there isn´t anything that taste the same as rosehip soup.

D.S & Durga offers a very pleasant and challenging collection (or actually, several) of perfumes. Their homepage is beautiful, well made and makes at least me, very curious. Take a look at it: http://dsanddurga.com/

I´ve got a nice selection of their perfumes in samples, and haven´t tried all yet. I´ve liked all of them I´ve tried this far, but one in particular make me want to write about it at once. Namely, Rosa Americana.

D:S & Durga doesn´t reveal much about the notes in their perfumes, but in Rosa Americana at least one note is obvious, rose. On my skin, Rosa Americana become a rose scent beyond what is usual when it comes to roses in perfume. There is dark, spicy roses and fresh, natural roses, roses with gourmandnotes and there is Rosa Americana.

The first note I smell is the note of rose, somehwat fleeting but also a little sweet, but pretty soon it changes to a note of rosehip. Yes, there is a distinct note of rosehip, but also a little rose flower, as if the rose bush bopth have flowering roses and rosehips at the same time. The rosehip note become dominating, but all the time keeping at the light, airy side, never to sweet, to much or cloying (like a big bowl of hot rosehip soup when you´re not up to it!). On D.S & Durga´s homepage you can read about the smell surrounding the rose bush, rather then the rose bush itself and that is pretty accurate.

The rosehip note is still there, but get company by a light honey note, like rose honey, some similarities to turkish delight, but never pronounced, strong or sweet. Just a little lingering and soft. Sher yet beautiful. So now we got rosehip, honey and airyness and then comes some juicy tobacco. Like the smell of pipe tobbaco, but from some distant. Really beautiful, interesting and different, have never encountered anything like this actually! During the heart phase of the scent, the notes are changing and sometimes the honey are dominating but soon there after the tobacco is. Really, really nice and unique. At the same time a scent I think most would like, it never becomes to strange, odd or edgy.

Not until the basenotes anyway, the honey becomes oily and more like bees wax, but that is ok with me, it´s the note of moss that occurs that make Rosa Americana lost me a little. No there isn´t a heavy moss note, it´s kind of light, but still pronounced, and as you know by now, mossnote isn´t one of my favourites. Yes, Rosa Americana still smells good, but not as good as during the opening and heart. It is thanks to the opening and heart I will return to Rosa Americana.

Rosa America have decent longvity, bot not amazing and the sillage is a little below medium.

D.S & Durga´s perfumes isn´t the easiest to come by, but if you get a chanse to try some of their perfumes, don´t miss those lovely and different rebel-perfumes! I will write about some other D.S & Durga perfumes, so don´t miss that either!

Pic: anandasoup

tisdag 17 november 2009

Wish list

I have tried a lot of perfumes. OK, compared to a more experienced perfumista my "Perfumes I´ve tried-list" is kind of short, but I am closing in to about 500 tried perfumes. There is a link to my Basenote-wardrobe here, but that´s a bit shorter, since i don´t always remember all perfumes I try or sometimes they aren´t in the basenotes directory.

It would be hidious if I wanted all the perfumes I´ve tried or even if I wanted about half of them. It isn´t quite that bad, it seems like I like about 10% of the perfumes I try so much that I would like more of them.

Or rather a little less than 10%, since it seem I become a little harder to win me over as I try more and more perfumes.

So my wish list is kind of scaled down, in most cases I would be more than content to have a decant of the scent. A 100 ml bottle for about 150 euro, it would last me a lifetime, since I prefer to change perfume often, even several times a day. But a 30 or 50 ml bottle for about 50-60 euro seem more appropriate. And when it comes to mainstream perfumes I can find on the net for about 20 euro, there isn´t much to think about.

With a little more than a month until Christmas I´ve made a wish list with perfumes that works good this time of year.

My Christmas wish list:
1) Parfumerie Generale´s Aomassai, Felanilla or Lounges Profanes.
2) Serge Lutens Musc Koublai Khan or Borneo 1834.
3) Frederic Malle`s Carnal Flower.
4) L'artisan´s Safran Troublant or Bois Farine.
5) Tauer´s L'Air du Desert Marocain.
6) Montale´s Red Aoud.

There you go, and there is only ten of them!

Which ten or less perfumes are on top of your wish list? Do you prefer a big bottle of perfume or ten 10 mls decants? I rather have ten decants I think.

måndag 16 november 2009

Nasomatto - Absinth

Probably I have mentioned absinthe on the blog before. And no, caring readers don´t have to worry about me. I don´t drink much alcohol and particulary not asbinthe. Even tough I "only" drink asbinthe about once a year, I would really like to own an absinthe fountain. Wouldn´t it look great next to our water pipe? And probably, being used as little.

There is something decadent about abisnthe, I know it´s a cult beverage among goths-artists and other alternative people. To me, it´s the ritual while drinking absinthe that I find most interesting. Nowadays it´s quite common to put a burning sugarcube (drenched in absinthe) in the glass and pour water in it until the fire stop. But historically, it was common to put a sugarcube on an openwork spoon and drip water on it and down in the absinthe glass. I don´t want to waste alcohol by burning it, so I prefer the later way of preparing absinthe.

Some perfumes are soft and comfy, others are sexy and there is some that crave attention. Nasomatto´s perfumes are (at least the one´s I´ve tried) somewhat spell binding, despite that i don´t really like them, they have a way to haunt me. China White for example is one of the "worst" scented experiences I´ve gone trough, and I swapped my little sample rather fast. But, still I am thinking about it and kind of belive that I would get it, if I only could try it again.

Black Afgano is really a nicer acquaintance, but still so potent and offensive I hestitate to wear it. Black Afgano disturbs, and touches and making a lot of noise while wearing it, and some of it is really comfy but some of it isn´t at all.

Compared to those Absinth is a quite subdued, but still very unique scent experience. Like other scents from Nasomatto, Absinth isn´t that flattering or nice, this is real absinthe with skyhigh thujon content (thujon is the neurotoxin that can be found in some absinthe and in large doses causing hallucinations and even nerve damage). At the same time I think Absinth is much softer than the other onés I´ve tried from Nasomatto. There is something comfy, laid back and vauge pleasantly about Absinth. If you want to try Nasomatto, I think Absinth could be agreat starting point.

The briskness in Absinth is on the border to spritzy, wich is suitable together with the liqour absinthe of course. There is almost like some kind of bubbly reaction between my skin and Absinth. This besque and bitter phase never become to bitter on me, and that´s nice since I have a tendency to make bitter notes even more bitter. In the bitter I also smell little hints of something sweet... The sweetness is extremly volatile, but make Absinth never to harsh or difficult to wear. It´s an interesting kind of sweetness.

Well, despite the fact that I don´t seem to get along 100% with Nasomatto´s perfumes i am still curious about their other perfumes. Yes, they are very expensive, but also worth the money if you´re looking for unique scent experiences, a 30 ml bottle of Nasomatto perfume extract will last for at least as long time as most perfumes in a 50 ml bottle.

I once read a book where one of the main characters said something like "Most nice people aren´t that interesting and most interesting people aren´t that nice" and I think that is a good way to describe Nasomatto´s perfumes.

The sillage of Absinth is much closer to skin than the others I´ve tried from nasomatto, but the longvity is great, Absinth last for at least 12 hours on my skin.

Pic: absintheonthenet

söndag 15 november 2009

Histoires de Parfums - Vert Pivoine

My grandmother had a coupple of beautiful peonys in her garden. As a kid I was fascinated by the flowers, so heavy that they leaned down to the ground. Peonys are the flower equivalent to fluffy, creamy fancy cake or the overloaded dresses of the rokoko-era. When my half-sister get married she had flowers from my grandmothers peonys in her wedding boquet, and my mother made it for her. One of the most beautiful wedding boquets I´ve seen.

But apart from that? Is peonys all about apperance? Or do they have any actual smell? Honestly, as I remember my grandmothers peonys, they didn´t smelled good, they rather smelled kind of not so good. But I´ve seen there is some sort of peonys called fragrant peoys, and I guess they smell good.

It must be that kind of peonys I find in Histoires de Parfums Vert Pivoine. Because this is an all together soft, comfy and pretty floral scent. Even tough I can´t say it smelles like peonys. My favourite among Histoires de Parfumes scents is the harsh, stiff leathery Marquis de Sade, and Vert Pivoine is almost as far away from it as it is possible to come. Still, I like it.

No, Vert Pivoine isn´t really my kind of scent. It´s a shy, light and never in your face kind of floral scent. But, as such, a really pleasant, nice and also a little different take on sheer floral. I find a slightly aquatic note in it and something minty, this contribute to the scents see through character. The floral note is in there, but very subdued. The green notes are easy, transparent and crispy. It´s like the faintest water colours, pink and green as light as they are close to white. Even if the scent is airy and light, it still has some kind of concrete poetic feel. It´s not one of Histoires de parfums "historic" scents, but still it´s like a nowadays rare, fragile interprention of femininity. Like an in apperance fragile ballerina in ballet shoes and tutu, but with an almost unhuman strenght and skill underneath the fragile surface.

Vert Pivoine slowly sails away like big pink petals on the ponds calm surface.

It last pretty long, but the scent is kind of fleeting. Sillage is light. It is both tight and romantic, beautiful but not that easy accesable.

Is there anyone that have tried the re-formulation of Marquis de Sade? I can´t belive it is to the better, since Marquis de Sade is one of my favourite leathery scents, but who knows?


torsdag 12 november 2009

Parfumerie Generale - Tubereuse Couture

There is something very special with severe coldness. No, I am not a winter lover, but when it become really, really cold there is something magical about it.

For me this state occurs when the temperature has fallen below -35c. It´s a kind of border between usual coldness and magical coldness. Severe, icy coldness with the arctic dark sky above covered with aurora borealis (northern lights) sparkling across it with it´s gentle humming sound. It´s like, for a while, being transported to an other world. A magic, cold, beautiful, but also cruel world.

Sounds become distorted, the feeling of space changes and become more shaped like a tunnel and everything seem to have sharper contures than usually. You can feel you´re not supposed to be out in this cold for such a long time. And, even tough you have experienced it before, you´re drawn to it, like an human explorer on an alien planet. There is something very interesting with that kind of cold, you can´t really get used to it (or maybe, if you´re an inuit you actually can!). And maybe, the world will never be more beautiful then it is in snow covered forrest, the moon is rising big and red and the aurora borealis dancing over the blackest sky ever and the temperature is on it´s way below -40c.

Parfumerie Generale´s Tubereuse Couture can be the coldest of all cold tuberose-scents I´ve tried. The opening is so icy and cold it make me think of arctic nights, aurora borealis, ice crystals and palaces made of snow and ice. Thing actually quite scentless, because cold aren´t the best surroundings for scent. But in my imagination, aurora borealis can smell like Tubereuse Couture. Cold and sparkling but with elements of colour.

Tubereuse Couture is a scent that chnges. Maybe the small ice crystals melts from the warmth of my skin, but slowly, because it take some time to melt something that cold. From extreme coldness to something with traces of wild strawberries. Still, it´s cold wild strawberries, like strawberry sorbét maybe? The strawberry notes lingers in and out of the tuberose note. For me, Tubereuse Couture is a very complex and changing fragrance.

It´s like making a journey from the coldest part of our world, trough the temperate zones and reach the Tropics. It´s a mindblowing and strange trip. Mindblowing and interesting, but honeslty, I would have prefer to stay in ice and coldness rather to suddenly embrase the sun, warmth, spices and coconut. Yes, now it´s become sweet, creamy and spicy.

Not to sweet or creamy, Tubereuse Couture is all the time a very refined and elegant scent. But I do find the heartnotes a bit strange thinking of the opening. During this phase, the tuberose become toned down, I can smell other flowers, I think jasmine and something sweeter and fruitier. The wild strawberry note stays and it´s all together nice, pretty and well made. But I do prefer the opening, I feel that I am losing my curiosity during this phase.

The base notes are rich, warm, creamy and soft. Really nice, but with no connection to the opening. Tubereuse Couture are longlasting and with great sillage, but never becomes to much or to strong. Do you want to try a perfume taking you on a really long trip, I reallt recommend Tubereuse Couture, so much longer than from the North Pole to the Equator it´s hard to go with only one perfume.

tisdag 10 november 2009

Paco Rabanne - XS Extreme Girl

For a long time ago I practised in a perfume shop. The name of the shop was "Lilly´s Bags and perfumes" and it was situated in my home town Boden. As the name suggest, Lilly offered not only perfumes in her shop but also bags, and swimwear, leather gloves, make-up and skincare products. Lilly and her emploies where all elegant ladies, close to retirement age.

I was a somewhat gloomy and balck dressed teenager with red and black hair and even if Lilly and her staff was really nice ladies, they didn´t want me to come close to the customers, mostly elegant ladies 50+. So I had to run errands, make inventory, get things from the store-room and dishwash the tea cups. When there wasn´t any customers in the shop, it was also ok for me to try some perfumes.

I can´t imagine that they got any rare brands, but nice classic brands like Hermes, Chanel, Dior and maybe Guerlain. Some a little more modern and trendy also. I do remember that one of my old teachers stopped by and bought a bottle of Paco Rabanne in present to her husband.

Among the perfumes I´ve tried there was only one that I really liked. I tought it smelled much better and more interesting then all the others. As I can remember the name was Crest. But I have no idea if it was the name of the perfume or the company that made it? It could have been a scent for men, since I´ve got some memory that one of the women that worked there told me it was a gentlemen perfume, not for girls. But I can have mixed things up. Well, I´ve tried to find a perfume named crest, with only resulting in a scent from Ralph Lauren named Crest, but released much later. And when reading the notes, it doesn´t at all sounds like my long lost perfume.

This mysterious Crest-perfume made such an impression on me, that I wished it in Christmas present. My mother visited Lilly´s shop, but I don´t remember if she later told me that the perfume was to expensive or that they couldn´t figure out wich perfume it was. I din´t get a bottle of Crest in Christmas present. Maybe my passionate perfume interest would have started back then if I had get me a bottle!?

Many years later, when my perfume interest had accelerate I get curious about Paco Rabanne´s XS Extreme Girl (but the name is sooo boring), the notes seem interesting and promising. Pistachio, safron, tobacco, cinnamon. Fortunate enough i manage to swap me a little sample of it. And...

Yes, XS Extreme Girl is a nice, pretty and a little different kind of scent. Not at all so extreme as the name suggest, but still a little more than your average mainstream scent. It´s kind of fresh and warm at the same time. Sweet, but never heavy. Youthful, but not girly. As a matter of fact, it do remind me of my long lost mystery perfume from the 80'ies!

XS Extreme Girl, isn´t an extremly interesting perfume, but still it got a personality. There is something minty, or maybe eucalyptus in it. And it is that minty, cool part together with warmer, spiceier notes I remember from that perfume back then. Strangely enough I also find that this perfume XS Extrem Girl could work for men as well. It has an unisex quality.

You can´t complain about the lastingpower or the sillage, they´re both pretty good. That paco Rabanne´s Black XS (available for both men and women) has become a best seller and not this one, is to my nose, really strange! I think XS Extreme Girl is a much better scent. But I guess it can depend on the name and the look of the bottles.

If there is anyone that can figure out or maybe remember what perfume it was, please tell me about your suggestions! Thank you!

Pic: Iceland Artscene

måndag 9 november 2009

Hilde Solani - FRaaagola saalaaata

Hilde Solani´s perfumes are truly niche-perfumes, since they´re so hard to find. What I can find, there isn´t any retailer within Europe, but some in US. Hilde Solani don´t have any homepage either, witch I find a little strange and also boring, since I have been curious about her perfumes for a long time.

Anyway, I manage to get me a sample of FRaaagola saalaaata, yes it´s supposed to be spelled that way. It is salted strawberries in italian.

FRaaagola saalaaata is everything I hoped that Montale´s Mukhallat would be and a little more. FRaaagola saalaaata is a scent in the same, rare genre as Frederic Malle´s Lipstick Rose. It´s happy, fun, feminine and so very mood lifting I almost got bubbly. If Lipstick Rose is a warm red scent, like a shining red umbrella in the rain, FRaaagola saalaaata is more of a creamy, saturated pink kind of fragrance.

It is girly in that cute and lively way that you sometime wished you could be. It makes me think about Sophia Coppola´s movie Marie Antoinette, pink shoes, pink cakes, fans, silk corsets and white powdered whigs. It also make me think about the old hit from the 80'ies, "Girl´s just wanna have fun". It make me feel half as old as I am, and enjoying in! And that´s quite an achivement, since I most of the time really enjoying my somewhat more mature age.

Even tough FRaaagola saalaaata is girly, pink, happy and funny I don´t see that women 30 or 35+ should avoid it, no in some strange way it´s just gorgeus on women not that young. But of course I have had to rescue my little sample from the daughters, they enjoy it very much.

For some reason it become totally different on my daughters than on me. On the daughters the topnote is a strong burst of violet, similar to Lipstick Rose, but much stronger. The violet notes stays for a while, with strawberries joining in, and after a while there is fresh, ripe strawberries all over until the drydown wich is more like softer, a little powdery strawberries. But, if you´re looking for a complicated scent experience I think you better look some where else.

On me there isn´t any violet at all. No there is fresh strawberries and something that could be a sweet desert wine. The strawberries and wine are soon joined by notes creamy notes. Like strawberries and creams and a little vanilla. I don´t recognise any salt tough, but maybe the salt after all make this perfume not to sweet. All the time it is more like fresh strawberries than strawberry jam.

And no, FRaaagola saalaaata isn´t a complex perfume on me neither. But, who cares? It´s so mood lifting, happy and filled with joy. I also think this is a scent possible to wear all year round.

FRaaagola saalaaata is pretty longlasting and has nice sillage. It´s a nice comfy scent, but also quite unique. A lof of perfumes whit notes of strawberries can make little cheap expression, Hilde Solani´s FRaaagola saalaaata doesn´t.

Pic: From Sophia Coppolas movie Marie-Antoinette

söndag 8 november 2009

Dabbing or spraying?

I know that most eau de toilettes and eau de parfumes that are sold today are supposed to be sprayed on. Still I´ve noticed that I in many ways prefer to dab on the perfume, even in the cases when it isn´t pure perfume or perfume oil.

The small samples I order are usually meant for dabbing, but some samples directly from manufacturers are spraysamples and of course it´s also possible to order spray samples from for example The Perfumed Court. But since I enjoy my dab samples I usually stuck to them.

I´ve talked with my oldest daughter about this, and she even stated that she usually likes the scent much more in a little sample vial, when she finally got it in a big bottle she tend to discover that she don´t really like it as much as before.

To dab on the scent, become more of a ritual than to spray it. You have to be careful with the little sample so you don´t waste expensive drops of perfume.
As I mention before, a small sample vial of 1 ml can last for pretty long time. When i order a larger decant I sometimes feel like I waste a coupple of ml´s in just a few sprays! Oh!

Some of the bottles and spray decants I´ve got sprays so generous that I sometimes think of breaking the spray device and dab the scent instead. No, I wont, but maybe you see what I mean?

At the same time I´ve noticed that a lot of scents get a totally different height and sillage with spraying, there is one rule, and that is that it doesn´t seem to be one!

What do you think? Do you sometimes miss to dab on a few drops after you bought the loved scent in a big bottle or decant? Or do you prefer spray always? And how come roll-on is so seldom used? Couldn´t that be a good middle way?

lördag 7 november 2009

Better safe than sorry.

I´ve got a lot of perfume samples. The last time I counted them they where about 300! At least that are many to me, and I guess a lot of perfumistas have many more samples than I do.

When receiving new perfume samples of course I test them. Some of them am I so curious about that I try them at once they´ve arrive. Others I try after a coupple of days, while some of the samples can be untested for quite a long time. It´s not possible to be as curious about all the perfumes. But some of the samples that haven´t been tested at once become happy surprises when I finally try them.

Quite often the most longed for samples become dissapointments. Maybe, because I had such high expectations.

Some perfumes takes me with storm at the first sniff. Half an hour later I know this is a scent I need more of. Maybe I try to get a bigger decant of it while I still got something left in the sample. This is perfumes that make me sit with my nose attached to the wrist. On a scale between 1-5, this is of course straight up fives!

Other perfumes takes some time for me to realise how much I like them, and that I don´t want to live without them. Maybe, perfumes in this cathegory smells a little less me. Anyway this is still really, really good perfumes. About steady five or strong four.

Then we come to all the perfumes i try that isn´t really that good. They are usually very nice, fine and good smelling perfumes. Maybe I think they´re a little to expensive. Or not so longlasting. Or I think I will not use them so often. Or maybe someone in my family don´t like them at all. This perfumes are weak fours or strong threes.

Anything worse than that is perfumes that I easily forget about. They usually smells really good, but there is something vague about them and a similarity to lots of others perfumes in this cathegory. Yes, three.

The perfume I forget about while I still wearing them are about grade two.

Then there is the kind of perfumes smelling fishy on me. Like they are created for someone with a totally different sense of smell or skin chemistry. Grade one.

In an own cathegory I would place the perfumes that gives me a great olfactory experience, but that don´t smell really like a perfume to me. There is something about them that make them more like apice of olfactory art than perfume. I know art is discussed when it comes to perfumes. I think it´s a complicated issue, so this are my own labels, that works for me and maybe no one else. Anyhway, for perfumes in this cathegory, a little sample can last a lifetime.

Yesterday I used a coupple of drops of Profumum Roma´s Dulcis in Fundo. Doing that made me realise that there only was about two drops left in my little sample. I´ve had the sample about 1½ year and it was only half full when i´ve got it, so that 0,5 ml has lasted quite good. I´ve consider Dulcis in Fundo as too expensive, but now with only one use left I realise I don´t want to be without it! Not often I use it, but perfcet this time of year. And when I am longing for Dulcis in Fundo nothing else comes even close!

L'Artisan´s Bois Farine is also like that. Not so longlasting on me, but when I feel like wearing Bois Farine, nothing else will do. There isn´t ANYTHING even reminding of it.

Ego Facto´s Poopoo Pidoo is another and Florascent´s Umami. Calé Fragranze D'Autores Tepidarium and Lostmarsch´s Lann-Ael. Ormonde Jayne´s Ormonde Women, Ava
Luxes Silk (Soie) that I don´t even like all the time. Honore des pres Sexy Angelic that smell as little as a newborn baby and well, I am sure there will be alot of others when the samples are about to run out.

This perfumes has a thing in common. They´re not spot on "me". But they´ve all got something unique that I not have been able to find in any other perfume. Still, it´s nice to know that a 5 ml decant of Dulcis in Fundo would probably last about ten years, wich makes it not such a expensive investment after all.

Wich perfumes have you surprisingly discovered that you won´t manage without, even tough they aren´t really "you"? Do you have any tips on those kind of unique perfumes that cant be replaces with anything else?

Pic: Mu own perfume bureu.

torsdag 5 november 2009

Ineke - Field Notes From Paris

Who hasn´t dreamed about café life in Paris? I can imagine myself resting my feets in high heels at a small table on a Paris café, after a gorgeus shopping in Parisian perfume boutiques.

Unfortunatly, my only visit to Paris is as far from that image as one can come. We where totally lost and had no more cigarettes and at that very time France won Soccer-EM and the whole city of Paris went crazy! OK, it was really fun to see the happy people, but it didn´t make it easier to drive!

Ineke Rühland seem to have got her share of Parisian café life while studying perfumery there. Ineke Rühland is the perfumer and creator of Ineke perfumes. http://www.ineke.com/index.html

This far, Ineke offers six different scents, After My Own Heart, Balmy Days & Sundays, Chemical Bonding, Evening Edged In Gold and the last Field Notes From Paris. You can also order a sample set of all six scent at Ineke´s homepage. As you can see Ineke´s perfumes come in alphabetical order, I think it´s a funny and personal concept. Unfortunatly I haven´t yet tested any of the other perfumes from Ineke.

Anyway, Field Notes From Paris is about tobacco, not about coffee. Well, to smoke cigarettes on a café in Paris is probably almost as usual as drinking coffee.

The tobacco in Field Notes From Paris is an aromatic, golden and almost a little chewy tobacco note. It makes me think more of raw tobacco then of cigarettes or pipe tobacco. The tobacco scent smells very genuin and fresh. Even tough non such notes are listed, I get a very prominent green feeling. Like the tobacco is being mixed with something fresh, green and grassy. The note of tobacco and grass goes in and out of each other in a very interesting way,

During this phase in the perfume, I can´t at all associate to a café. No, it makes me think of an old fashioned tobacco farm, with tobacco hanged to dry in a barn and fields of lush summer greenery outside it. A very living and interesting scent, but there is something in it reminding of mosquito reppelant as well. Don´t misunderstand me, I think the note of mosquito reppelant smells quite nice and homey. Like tobacco grown in Northern Sweden.

Anyhow, the opening and heartnotes are fresh, aromatic, chewy and a little sharp. But after a while the green sharpness wears off and this is when I like Field Notes From Paris the most.

It slowly changes to a creamy, warm and golden gourmand scent, with an interesting note of soft leather. Now, it is more of a café scent I think! Really comfy, nice and great this time of year. If the opening is a little on the masculin side, the dry down is more on the feminin. But, still I consider it easy to wear for both sexes.

The most negative is that the scent become very soft during this phase. As soft as it is really hard to notice it. I have to sit with my nose close to the wrist to smell it. Ans since it has been quite powerful from the start, this is a little dissapointing. Field Notes From Paris is an eau de perfume, but to my nose and skin chemistry, it´s more like an eau de toilette.

As I said, I haven´t tried any of the other Ineke scents, which among them shouldn´t I miss?

Pic: paris_cafe Philip Levine