First, thanks to all who have given me thier well wishes.  They are deeply appreciated. 

I am still recovering this week.  My lovely sinus infection has left  me sniff impaired.  It’s like smelling things on very low volume — I know what is supposed to be there, but I can’t quite make out the olfactory words.  For the last week I was sure my bottle of Cuir de Russie parfum had gone bad or was filled with some other juice. Admist thinking evil thoughts towards Chanel, I tried a spray of my beloved Amoureuse before taking the Princess to the butterfly gardens (there’s a floral that is big and beautiful enough to attract butterflies without sickening people! really works!) and discovered my nose seems to be skipping various notes in perfume.  Thusly, blogging a review would not be a worthwhile use of blogo-sphere.

Instead I’ve been drinking spicy hot chocolate and catching up on my reading.  If you have not READ Phillip Pullman’s Golden Compass and the other books, DO.  just do it.  They are very well written and make Harry Potter look like a Dick and Jane book.  (still love HP)  I can’t go into detail as I wouldn’t do it justice and it might ruin the read for you, but get on amazon and get a cheap copy.  Then find a soft place to read and something warm to drink and shut out the world for awhile.  Heaven. 

Speaking of the philosphical, since I can’t tell you about what I smell, maybe in the spirit of the PerfumePosse, I can incite some lively debate.

Let’s talk about sexuality, baby.  As we’ve all lamented, it used to be full figures, form fitting, but not sleazy tight clothes.  Lady in the street kind of thing.  Hair and perfumes were both big.  Perfume seemed more complex, shocking or at least startlingly sexy though still ladyish.  Body hair in certain regions was not taboo…even vocabulary described things in a differnt manner.  Pretty, beautiful and of course sexy have given way to “cute,” “hottie” and other dimnutive terms.  We walk out of hte house wearing sweatsuits and smelling like candy/fruit/fake flowers or showers.  Oh and most men would love to have a full waxing required before they see us naked.  It seems our culture is pushing women out of womanhood and back into childhood…a culture of neverending immaturity, bordering on pedophila.  (don’t get me started on how we delay our kids growing into maturity for years, subject for another forum.)

I’m 28 and it disturbs me what the future for my little girl may hold, so in my own way I’ve been trying to take it back.  I try not to pander to every celebutant’s clothing/perfume what have you line and make an effort to leave the house with a knock out perfume and at least no more than one body part highlighted in a sexy manner.   I intend to give Princess access to the reading and perfume library as well as allow her to become an adult when it is time to be an adult, as opposed to extending her childhood into her late teens, early twenties, late thirties….

Where did we go wrong?  Do you agree? Is there hope? Does it effect society to where it has perhaps contributed to downfall? Is there downfall or is it hindsight 20/20? Or is it a govermental conspiracy to keep us young dumb, full of it and easy to control? Should I cut back on the Tylenol cold and Sinus? Post your thoughts and let some fur fly.

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Published in: on January 23, 2008 at 9:50 am  Comments (3)  

A Brief Hiatus

Hello all.

I won’t be posting until further notice.  My grandfather died last night, and I will be traveling.  Tell someone  how much you love them today, you may not get another chance.

perfume today :Nicolai Marharadjah and Encens et Lavende.

Published in: on January 16, 2008 at 9:59 pm  Comments (2)  

ack

Perfumequeen has a slight cold and can’t breathe through her nose.  Friday Candy Jar Day is cancelled this week.

When y’all have colds, do you still wear perfume for the psychological benefit, or for the benefit of others?

This morning, Sunday, I’m still pretty sniffle-y, but I intend to wear perfume since I will be out and about.  I feel so naked without it.  Probably will choose Un Temps de Une Fete, as I want something light-ish so I don’t over apply and kill people. I’m getting quite hooked on that one lately.  Or maybe some Frapin, sent to me by dear reader Carol, though application could get heavy.  Off to go make myself presentable.  Can’t entertain in jammies.  At least not til I find some fabulous silk chinese jammies with matching marabou mules.  suggestions on that?

Who knows anything about spring sniffas???

Published in: on January 12, 2008 at 4:36 am  Comments (3)  

Homework for the Perfumistas

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I intended to post on Chanel’s Coco  today, however, in my research, I read something that deserves a bit more research.  In Deluxe, How Luxury Lost it’s Luster  by Dana Thomas, Polge (Chanel’s resident nose) is quoted as saying  “Coco is a combination of Cuir de Russie and Bois des Iles.”   My copy of the book is in a locked car, so I paraphrased, but the statement tells me I need to reexamine my notes on Coco  in this context before giving a review.

your homework:

 Get out your Coco, Cuir de Russie and Bois des Iles and examine the composition in the context Polge put it in.  I am curious to see if anyone sees it this way.  I will be posting on my observations in three weeks from today, so pass papers forward and to the left, class, I expect some in depth observations.  Anyone who leaves a thoughtful comment in the meantime goes in the drawing for a spiffy prize! 

Tune in Friday for Candy Jar day.  Sometime over the weekend, look for a Delrae Detour posting.  I’ve become re-obsessed with the line and need to give my collection the props they deserve. 

Published in: on January 9, 2008 at 11:44 pm  Comments (2)  

Caron Carnation series, Bellodgia the Carnation Queen

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Bellodgia was created in 1927 to immortalize a small Italian town by the same name.  It is a favorite of Caron’s American customers.    Now, I SWEAR I had a sample of the extrait, however, it’s either been accidentally gifted or possibly swallowed by the baby or a pet.  So…I am reviewing the EDP which, though not the extrait, is quite glorious in itself. The opening is spicy, though not as heady and exotic as Poivre, but definitely the spicy carnation we see in other Caron compositions.  It is a warm, almost tactile experience, similar to the cashmere sweater feel of Parfum Sacre.  However where Parfum Sacre veers into incense rose sex, Bellodgia develops a creamy milk taste for the nose, becoming sweet, though not sticky. Powdery violet peeks in as lily of the valley bats her flirty lashes at us before she sneaks away in the background.  Finally, we get more sweet stuff before a light musky woodiness.  Does anyone feel musk has an olfactory flavor to it?  I pause to say gourmand, as it doesn’t really smell foodie to me, but there is some sort of a mouth feel to it I can’t quite get into words.    Not quite as dark as some of the other Caron’s possibly due to the lack of saxon moss, Bellodgia cycles through its sweet spice over and over until it dries down to the subtle woody spice.  During the transitions, we easily see how Bellodgia inspired other Caron favorite, serving as a base to build upon.  From the grandmother, it is easy to trace the lineage of Poivre, Coup de Fouet and Parfum Sacre back to her.  Each perfume’s spiciness draws upon the composition of Bellodgia with a new interpretation.  I like to think of it as a series of photographs.  First, there is the sepia toned Bellodgia print of a carnation in a dark wood frame.  You can see the beauty of the composition and the sepia tone imparts warmth to the picture. Absolutely older, but a classy print you love to have on your wall.  Then you get a bright Technicolor Print of Poivre in an opulent gilded frame.  Bold, and bright, the colors are so rich and intense it almost looks like a thickly paved oil painting of carnations in a myriad of colors.  This exotic work is immediately noticed by all that surround you.  Coup de Fouet is somewhere off to the side of the Poivre, smaller, watercolor-esque in a silver frame.  Pretty, but a faded interpretation.   Parfum Sacre is a more modern work.  It’s generally black and white with flourishes of red.  Roses, smoke and woods replace the carnation.  However, even though the carnation is not in the composition, you feel the kindred spirit in the perfume.    Typically, when a perfume house has a certain composition that they update with a different twist, the older version goes out the window.  Caron’s good sense in keeping all versions around allows Caron sluts like me to explore a perfume’s lineage and appreciate where we have been and where we are now.**  yes, I realize that the perfumes are not meant to be reinterpretations.  Notes: carnation, rose, jasmine, violet, lily of the valley, sandalwood, vanilla and muskphoto:http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Image:Sargent_Carnation_Lily_Lily_Rose.jpg

Published in: on January 8, 2008 at 10:18 am  Comments (2)  

Friday Candy! Andy Tauer’s Incense Extreme

Welcome to the second edition of Friday Candy Jar.  This episode will be short and sweet.

Andy Tauer is a smaller independent perfumer who gets rave reviews from all the blogging perfumistas.  His new perfume Incense Extreme  is my first experience with his work.  I recieved a sample from a past oreder with Luckyscent and couldn’t wait to give it a go. 

Upon application, I get last night’s bonfire, which is quite lovely.  It is as though I woke up the next morning after a chilly night spent cavorting in the woods with a group of friends, a box o’wine, blankets, music and some masrshmellows.  Good times.  Nothing better than reliving those good times the next morning with the smell of fragrant smoke on your skin and in you hair.  Next the perfume brings back the hike in the woods we took to get to the bonfire spot.  Somewhere I got some sweetness, but only a fleeting sniff.  After that, it just kind of goes up in smoke. 

Disapointing for me.  I was hoping for deep, rich spicy incense, a tad more religious and oriental in nature.  Lez Nez Let Me Play the Lion  is already my go to bonfire smell, which I adore in fall for outdoor wearing.  Tauer’s Incense Extreme  is too light for my taste.  However, as I mentioned I only recieved a sample vial and application was a dab, so I may not have gotten the full effect a spray would give.  or a bath.  Possibly, it oculd just be the evil imp skin chemistry. 

Why am I making excuses?  I really wanted to love this.   His site describes very interesting compostions and I had some high hopes after reading reviews.  I resolve to give this one another whirl and report back.  If anyone else has given this a try, drop a comment with your thoughts, tell me I’m nuts or tell me it’s true.

Monday we will continue the Caron Carnation mini series with a review of Belladogia  and Wednesdayish, we will take a look at CoCo.  Enjoy the weekend!

notes Incense, touch of spices, powdery orris, cedarwood, ambergris, frankincense

Published in: on January 5, 2008 at 1:48 am  Comments (4)  

Caron Carnation Sisters — Poivre and Coup de Fouet

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Before we delve into my Carnation mini-series part I, I must wish you a happy New Year.  January doesn’t feel like the beginning of the year for me.  My clock seems to reset itself in the fall around September, which I am sure is due to having been a student most of my life.  However, the first of the year does bring a sort of cleansing reassessment and internal detox.  I like to think about how I am doing on my goals and adjust.      Anyhow, Carnations.  It never occurred to me that the cheap grocery store standby flower would emit such an intoxicatingly spicy perfume.  When combined with other peppery and floral notes, the humble carnation achieves perfume art in the form of Caron’s Poivre and Coup de Fouet Poivre is the parfum edition, CdF the toilette were created in 1954 and 1957 respectively.     From Caron’s website:

“POIVRE

 
THE STORY
In 1953, Félicie Wanpouille – who was by no means oblivious to the emergence of new fashions such as Dior’s New Look –– asked Michel Morsetti to create a new fragrance. The olfactory concept involved a geranium rosa base, the peppery undertones of which had seduced her. To get an original, easily-remembered name, she bought the Poivre brand from Parfums Rival, with which she baptized this essence-in-progress.
In 1954, CARON created The Event with POIVRE, whose explosive scent is still without parallel on today’s market.Assured of her success, Félicie Wanpouille organized a splendid launch party at the Place Vendôme, between the CARON mansion and the Ritz. The Tout Paris and the Tout New York rushed to be part of the scene.COUP DE FOUET
Félicie Wanpouille’s last creation, in 1957, is called Coup de Fouet –– Eau De Cologne Poivrée. A refreshing fragrance on a base of rose and carnation, accentuated with a hint of pepper.
It’s the alter-ego of POIVRE, worn with equal ease by men and women alike.”      Nothing like the story from the horse’s mouth.  Poivre’s  richness prompts a mental vignette       The night air is particularly frigid in the desert.  The royal caravan had covered a great distance during the day and well into the night and the Princess looked forward to resting at the camp set up by the servants sent ahead.  As the litter approached the large white tent, the Princess stretches and raises herself to a sitting position   Her litter stops and her massive eunuch gently aides her out of the litter and onto the sand.  As he draws back the tent’s entrance flap she feels the warmth and color inside the tent greet her chilled skin.  She enters and is greeted immediately with a cup of hot chai, which she sips daintily as her bath is prepared. 

      Amidst the brightly colored cushions, flowers and candles a golden bath tub is prepared by her servants.  The smell of the chai tea grows stronger as the servants pour hot water into the tub over the same mixture of spice, tea and flowers as she had been served in her cup.  The pepper berries, cinnamon and cloves in the tub would amplify the warming sensation of the bath, quickly banishing the chill of the night air from her skin and memory.  Finished with her cup of tea, her maids help undress her.  Gracefully, she steps into the tub of tea, enjoying the tingling sensation of the spice’s effects on her skin.  No longer cold and tired, The Princess signals her maids to add the milk steeped with her favorite flowers- carnation and ylang-ylang.  As milk and honey are added to the bath to temper the heat and tingle of the spice, as well as to soften and condition her skin, she breathes in the languid, luxurious perfume of the flowers mixing with the myrhh-sandlewood incenses of the tent.    She dreamily splashes about as one maidservant brushes out her long dark silky hair and another readies her palaang so she can nap before the night’s festivities.  Out of the tub and onto soft silk, she reclines as iages of richly colored silks, swirling dacers and swirling smoke flitted across her brain and behind her eyes.  The lingering scent of her bath clings to her skin perfuming her sleep.

     Over the top a bit, however the mental image seems to nail the exotic spice and floral experience of the chai tea bath that is Poivre.   I find this parfum best worn in extremes of temperature, either very cold or very warm.  Silage and lasting power are impressive, only a drop is needed to invoke the spicy perfection of this gourmand.     Coup de Fouet on the other hand id more suitable for warm weather, as the composition is much lighter, more woody and aqueous.  The spice is still prominent in the beginning; however it quickly wears off into watery, spicy woods where the perfume deepens into a creamy sweet then dark base.  I do not actually have a bottle of CdF, so I was unable to get the effects of a spray and assume a spray application would bring out more of its Poivre roots than does a dab.  Sometimes application is everything.        In any case both compositions glorify the humdrum carnation and reaffirm Caron’s place as perfume genius.                                       Notes red pepper, black pepper, giroflore, carnation, ylang ylang, opoponax, sandalwood, vetiver, and oakmoss.     

 
 
 
Published in: on January 3, 2008 at 3:30 am  Comments (1)