Oh and every now and again I like to post some tattoo updates. Been working on some cool pieces recently All my own artwork I really wanted to do!
I know I know, my posting has been absolutely dire recently. I have some hardcore writing to do to catch up haha.
Well, next up is my interview with Chandler Burr on his Art of Scent exhibition and the Untitled project. This was going to be a video review, but as we’ve both been super busy with work, we just couldn’t find a time to arrange the call! Very frustrating, so unfortunately it’ll be written. Obviously the interviews are relatively brief so each blogger gets their turn without hogging all the questions but hopefully you’ll find it as interesting as I have.
I also have the Vero Profumo Voile D’Extrait releases to talk about which I’ve been sampling lots recently (total love of course). So yeh, lots to come up.
I’ll brighten this post with some of the tattoo work I’ve been keeping busy with these last few weeks as I haven’t done that in a long time! Bit of a non-fragrance related thing but… enjoy!
Well! Fumerie Hilaire (Freddie) was the first to tackle my blind sniff challenge (Oh and apologies for the lack of posting I’ve been so into this YouTube blind sniff that I had abandoned my blog for a few days!).
Here’s his video – a little long, but very fun to watch
I’d like to say also that Freddie, just today, figured out what “Power” was – and is so close to figuring out “Stone” I’m on the edge of my seat waiting for him to say it!
He’s also figured out “Spirit” much better than I could of but I’m worried that the uber-niche-ness of it may make it difficult to guess – he’s got all the accords right though!
But yeh, I can’t name what “Power” is on here yet just incase Raj has a snoop around and finds out
But enjoy guys! New reviews to come soon – I’m up to my neck in things to write about!
Hey guys hope everyone is keeping well.
Been working on some new YouTube vids – which got kindda wasted because my video editing software has just all failed on me for no reason – majorly sucks.
Anyway – got tons of reviews coming up I just need to manage my blog, the YouTube channel, and the masses of work I’ve got to draw up for people at work! Thought I’d brighten the post with a new picture for my About Me section (lemme know what you think!) - and a really cute tattoo I did on my friend Laura yesterday at work (off topic I know sorry but gotta give you something to look at here).
Well, the other day myself and fellow fragrance lover, blogger and fountain-of-knowledge Vanessa, from Bonkers about Perfume, decided to hook up for a drink and a quick sniff of various things. I’d love to write an in-depth diary entry about this, but Vanessa has beat me to it (or I’m just lazy) and has written a charming little account of our drinks and sniffs, in words much more elegant than I could have put together.
We had a great chat about pretty much everything, shared some perfume loves and had a right good slag-off about everything perfume and blog related. Perfect company! <3
Selected via Random.org:
The winner of the 8 x 1ml samples is:
!!! poodle !!!
Please email me (email address on the “About Me” section) with your postage details and I’ll get the samples shipped out to you asap!
Thanks to everyone who entered, keep your eyes peeled more giveaways to come soon.
Merry Christmas and congrats on surviving the apocalypse
So after my two-week fragrant tour around Europe (which went swimmingly!) – I managed to pick up some goodies on the way (of course).
Here are my somewhat unusual choices if I do say so myself…
Bosque by Humiecki & Graef
I love Bosque. I always have. I got thinking about how people say it is the easiest to wear and the most “generic” of the H&G line – I completely disagree, but maybe that’s my mindset. I’ve planned this big friggin’ essay on Bosque that I’ve been working on and am looking forward to posting, it might be a bit ridiculous for most people to read but it’ll be there anyway
Bosque is a dried grassy/floral with really bizarre floral notes I might add… it dries down to this bizarrely salty/milky/spermy? accord undercut with vetiver, it’s extremely unusual, absolutely beautiful and I’m thrilled to finally have it.
M/Mink by Byredo
I had tried this one before but only on paper. I thought it was absolutely disgusting. However, as soon as it hit my skin in the store in Germany, I got this blast of animalic musk and an intensely synthetic aldehyde combo that still, turned my stomach a bit. But as it dried down and the bitter, set honey, dark incense and unsettling inky notes came in, I found it completely captivating. I’m not sure whether I’ll wear M/Mink much, but I knew it had to be in my collection – it fits an empty spot. It’s both intimate and completely soul-less – brilliant!
Miriam by Tableau de Parfums
Miriam is an incredible fragrance, a modern vintage classic that carries a true Andy Tauer signature. It’s such an emotional fragrance, beautiful, elegant and timeless – full of interesting twists and turns that take it in unexpected directions. It evokes such strong memories and emotions with me and is a real “homely” fragrance – it is pure bliss. I have written my big review on this so I don’t need to write much more, but I feel like I can sigh relief with a smile now I have it.
Iris Silver Mist by Serge Lutens
I knew I was going to get this one – it’s the most perfect iris (soliflore?) fragrance I’ve smelt. Full of carrots, powder, clove, earth and blahhhhhh it’s just great. A cold, calming, haunting perfume that has been on “the list” for far too long now. I needed it!
Rahat Loukhoum by Serge Lutens
Now here’s a weird one ey? Well… after my deep exploration of the exclusives line both outside of the Palais Royal and during my visit, I decided to pick up this one again for a quick sniff – having reviewed it many months ago after I had a slight obsession with it before smelling it. I loved it all over again – cherry, marzipan cakey goodness. But before, I was disappointed with the drydown – it lost the cherries, it lost the sweetness – it became a subtle skin scent that just hovered on my skin in a light, slightly powdered layer of vanilla, rose, musk and almond. The thing is, right now – this part appeals to me just as much. It is the ultimate comfort scent and I’d love to fall asleep to it. But also, It is the perfect fragrance to wear when you don’t know what to wear – something that will just within an hour or two melt into your skin in a delicate sweet layer that smells like a part of you – just a little more yummy. Thoughtless, elegant, edible? but necessary! I had to buy it. It alters my mind completely on first sniff – a complete joy.
Rubj by Vero Profumo
Rubj is one of the greatest florals created… in my opinion of course. As Judas as it is to say, I love the EDP more than the extrait… now, I adore the extrait, it’s beautiful – but the crisp green quality and the tart passionfruit in the EDP just tips the scale for me and could literally make me faint in adoration of this fragrance. An overwhelmingly gorgeous perfume that I almost feel is too good for me to wear, but when I wear it I feel incredible – and that’s what a real perfume should do! A necessity.
Leva by O’Driu
I have always wanted an O’Driu - but thought I didn’t like any of them enough to own – and the price is indeed terrifying. Leva always gets put down a bit in the lineup as being too sweet, too light, and too unlike the other O’Driu’s - I can’t disagree with that enough. Leva is a powerhouse on me, holding a typical O’Driu signature up top with THE MOST intense lemongrass and green olive combo which smells like a dense, pungent almost vinegar-laden oil on the skin. But the thing that captivates me the most is its perfect development (using only naturals I believe). The olives burn off after half an hour or so, the pungent lemongrass undercut by the greatest vanilla I have smelt. I struggle with vanilla so this is a big deal for me. Difficult to wear, but a real piece of art work.
Fracas by Robert Piguet
Ok I’m lying a bit here, this was a gift from the Robert Piguet house, but I came back to it from my holiday so I’m including it After all, it is a new bottle. I do love Fracas – a playful ditsy tuberose that I can splash on in abandon and roll around smelling of candies and cream – all buttered up in creamy white florals! Of course, there’s more to it than that, but I’ll be sure to write something a little more mature about it soon
So yes! There you have it. What do you guys think? Did I do good?
THE GIVEAWAY – NOW CLOSED!!!
(the real reason you’re reading this)
So one lucky reader can win a 1ml sample of each of my new goodies!
All you have to do is subscribe/follow (if you haven’t already!), let me know which one takes your fancy the most, AND – LET ME KNOW WHAT YOU THINK OF THEM!!
I love feedback, negative and all, don’t be afraid to tell me you hate something that’s part of the fun But it sucks to send people stuff and never hear from them again – just saying
I’ll announce the winner next Sunday: 23/12/2012 so make sure you come back and check because people keep forgetting to collect their goodies
Thanks for the support everyone
Ok so I had a really short stay in Rome and it’s almost over now (I leave early tomorrow morning). Perfume wise, there’s only one place I’m gonna be talking about really and that’s CampoMarzio70.
CampoMarzio70 helped me out a lot on my blog I think, sending samples of the O’Driu line and the Vero Profumo line to me when I was just a few months into my blog – it introduced me to a whole new world of perfumery and their help, support, and friendly contact was hugely appreciated.
Vero gave me some names to get in touch with when I got to Rome so my experience at CampoMarzio70 on Via Vittoria was awesome
(P.s I don’t know why there’s a black blob on all my photos, something on my lens Ow)
So the Via Vittoria store is spacious, every brand has its own column and you can work around and try everything you want without an ounce of pressure for a sale. It’s a perfect environment to sniff – with brands such as Mona Di Orio, April Aromatics, O’Driu, Kilian, Grossmith, Caron, Agonist, YOSH, Vero Profumo, Xerjoff… the list is endless. They have 3 stores (the Via Vittoria was my favourite). The Via Vittoria store specialises in more obscure, higher end niche and hard to find fragrances (or shall we say most expensive!), the other two stores Campo Marzio and the Pantheon store are a little smaller and more traditional with many more brands encompassing Byredo, L’Artisan etc. etc. Tons too many to mention.
The staff at Via Vittoria where I spent most of my time were extremely helpful (unfortunately I can’t remember everyone’s names but they all had their knowledge to impart!) but Serena Bonfatti showed me around the shop, introduced me to all the lines and arranged that the owner’s son Valentino Di Liello and us all had a little chat about the store and the concept etc. There doesn’t seem to be any other stores in Italy specialising in such a display and collection of such outstanding fragrances – the concept of course being a collection of artworks that are there to be sniffed and experienced, and not for quick sale (there are tons of perfumeries in Italy – being like the general pharmacy stores in Britain).
Upstairs is some more exclusive fragrances that I got to go and have a look at, a selection of O’Driu’s, numerous classical extraits I hadn’t really heard of, the Grossmith and Xerjoff collections… it was beautiful. The shop is similar to Roja Dove’s Haute Parfumerie in Harrods, only a little less clostraphobic and just as interested in modern, avant-garde perfumery as it is classic.
The staff are highly knowledgeable about each line and I learnt the concepts behind YOSH (I quite liked the heavy geranium/white floral combo of Omniscient), the back story of individual brands I knew nothing about, the April Aromatics line was also interesting (you know I love a bit of natural perfumery here and there). So it was awesome to be able to walk around and discover some new things – and of course make a little purchase at the end of it all
I didn’t really introduce myself at the other two Campomarzio70 stores so I just kind of had a little stroll around and a quick sniff here and there but kept getting drawn back to the lavish escape of Via Vittoria. In the other stores, whilst the stock is hugely impressive, of course the brands are widely available over Europe (some of them anyway… L’Artisan, Byredo, Penhaligons, MFK) but in Italy, these stores are some of the only ones stocking them so each one is a big deal if Rome is your fragrance shopping destination.
So yep – I know there’s not that much for me to talk about in Rome other than the one shop, but it encompasses pretty much everything that a perfume lover needs in one place so – hugely recommended, and a big thank you to them for being so welcoming and generous
One other shop I passed on the way back to my hotel one night (and for the life of me I don’t remember the name of it) had a big selection of ladies clothes, and randomly, a little perfume counter. They had all the Histoires De Parfums line along with their two other lines The Scent of Departure and Alice & Peter. They also had some Ineke’s and other random bits. I got to give quick sniffs to the three new HdP fragrances from their new Edition Rare trio: Veni, Vidi and Vici - but unfortunately none of them were to my taste! Also I loved the cute cupcake bottles of Alice & Peter but the scents (I only tried the two I was interested in) were much lighter, more translucent, and much more simplistic than I thought they would be – another disappointment. Ah well! I got some lovely goodies in Italy so, stick to the good stuff
So tomorrow I leave, and my holiday is all over Owwww. Quite looking forward to getting back home though – regular company, good food, and conversations!! It’s been extremely overwhelming all this travelling and I’m exhausted – but a crazy experience! Thanks to all you readers for your support it’s been fun
Oh and this is Post No.200!!! YAY I’ll do a lovely little giveaway when I get back so keep your eyes peeled!
Thanks for all the support so far and the nice words about my vacation and the happy birthdays and all that, it’s been much appreciated
So, It’s my last day in Paris today, and it’s more of a “perfume shop visiting” diary than anything as exciting as what went down in Zurich But there we go.
The first stop when I got to Paris was Galeries Lafayette, it was hideously overcrowded with a stock I’d seen everywhere and I think I stayed about ten minutes…
Onto something more interesting The Serge Lutens Palais Royal!
Ok so the shop is gorgeous, the bell jars all laid out exquisitely with tester strips below them so you can smell the drydown and then fresh ones to smell the top notes. The sales assistants were surprisingly helpful, not the most welcoming in the world but as soon as they saw I actually had an interest they warmed up a bit (expectedly!).
There were a few things I’ve been really meaning to try properly. Sarrasins was one (and a lovely BN’er is sending me a sample to live with for a while of this one so I didn’t explore it too much) – but it’s a gorgeous, over-the-top indole heavy jasmine, I didn’t try it on skin, but I know I’ll like it
Mandarine-Mandarin is one that I keep getting drawn too although I had never smelt it before, and when I put it on my skin I thought it was love at first sniff. It’s a beautiful, dense, jammy orange – laden with spices and a rich, warm base – it’s loud, lasts forever, and I instantly considered it an ultimate comfort scent - unfortunately it got pretty tiring on my skin after a couple of hours of walking around and I managed to put myself off it Still, it’s a beautiful scent and one that seems to get overlooked a lot in the Lutens’ line up of exclusives.
I gave quick sniffs to tons of stuff: Rose De Nuit, Encens et Lavande, Fourreau Noir…
One worth talking about is the new release, Une Voix Noire (which I’ll have to find a sample of and write about soon). It really really impressed me, although it completely turned my stomach! The gardenia in it, isn’t really a gardenia, it’s not particularly accurate but it’s interesting. There isn’t a mushroom in sight, but it is without a doubt the cheesiest gardenia I’ve smelt. It’s not rich and pungent, but it reminded me a soft cream cheese like Philadelphia – that underneath all the sweetness and boozy notes was fascinating, and absolutely sicknening! I almost wanted to buy it, but with it sitting on my skin for a few hours, the drydown just smelt filthy to me! – and in a way I’d never experienced before. I would love to explore this one more as it was so unexpected. It’s a great release, a brilliant perfume, but totally unwearable for me.
Anyway, I won’t tell you what I bought just yet… I’ll leave that for my last post on my holiday!
Next I went to Jovoy which I visited today as well (this post isn’t all about one day!) – Jovoy has a beautiful collection, all the Tauer’s, Vero Profumo, Puredistance, Xerjoff, Parfum D’Empire – it’s huge, beautifully presented and the manager? I think he was anyway – was extremely helpful and took me around the whole shop explaining everything. I highly recommend this place to visit!
I tried a few things that I had wanted too, like Cuir de Nacre (very iris heavy but nice enough), Chypre Palatin (which I was really impressed by on first sniff but found the drydown a little boring for me – it reminded me of a modern Bandit meets Mitsouko? Although they’re very different).
I tried Mona’s Cuir again as I’m always fascinated by it (and have a sample now) – I love that cigarette smoke leather that on my skin turns almost peanut-y, but I don’t think I need another heavy leather. I tried the new Musc Tonkin by Parfum D’Empire which was much more potent and “extreme” than I imagined it would be – a heavy heavy goat leather with a lot of other crazy stuff going on in there, I didn’t give it much time because yet again – I don’t need a leather, and it was a little bit unsettling for me
So yes, I could go on and on but this post is long enough already and I have lots more to write about!
Nose is the new concept fragrance store whose idea is that you have an “assessment” where you try lots of ingredients and blah blah, then they recommend you 5 perfumes to try based on your tastes. It’s a great idea, but I walked around the shop and the brands I’d either tried or wasn’t particularly interested in at the time, so I thought I shalln’t waste my time on an assessment becuase I’m not buying anything
Sens Unique had a great little range including all the Parfumerie Generale’s, Nasomatto… the usual, on top of Technique Indiscrete which I’d wanted to try for ages! Their Delivre Moi which I assumed I would love (and did!) was a gorgeously rich, piss-y honey scent that was a little too similar to my bottle of Miel De Bois for me to purchase. But I would highly recommend it as a more affordable alternative! A lovely little shop and the sales girl was hugely knowledgeable, telling me the stories behind a lot of the fragrances I randomly picked out.
Marie Antoinette is a tiny boutique perfumery that Andy Tauer had told me I must visit. It was gorgeous, like a little crooked wooden house stocked with a carefully chosen, refined selection. The lovely gent who runs the place was extremely helpful and passionate, and Marie Antoinette is also the only shop in Paris to stock the Tableau De Parfums line. He sprayed me with something amazing but I can’t remember its name the language barrier was a little tricky and I’m sure we both nodded along to things when not knowing what to say or not understanding each other. Still – he had some highly unusual things I’d never heard of and it is a real little gem of a perfume shop.
The Guerlain boutique on the Champs Elysees was stunning. I was a bit apprehensive about going in – and to be honest, Guerlain really isn’t my scene. But still, it was lovely to see all the bee bottles and the wonderful displays throughout the shop and try all the pure parfum’s, some exclusives etc. etc.
I also visited a Frederic Malle store (to buy my Mum’s xmas prezzie), and yet again, the sales man was fascinating to talk to. He told me I must visit Printemps department store which had a much better selection of fragrances than Galeries Lafayette and he was right – although it was yet again, a little overcrowded – it had a very nice selection. But, yet again, nothing I hadn’t seen all over Paris. But the manager of the Frederic Malle store in Printemps got in touch with me having discovered my blog just a day ago, so I’m going back there tonight to have a little chat
Ermmmmmm, so yeh! Perfume wise, I think that’s pretty much it. I passed Parfums de Nicolai, Etat Libre D’Orange, Annick Goutal, L’Artisan Parfumeur etc. but, aside from PdN, I know these lines so well I didn’t feel the need to pop into the stores.
So on top of a ton of typically tourist-y sightseeing, that’s what I’ve been up to here All lovely stuff!
And tomorrow? Off to Rome!