Summer heat has arrived and I am reaching for something utterly soothing: Les Nuits d'Hadrian. The scent is cool herbs, citrus rind, and incense; what suprises me the most is that this doesn't get more love, I find it utterly beautiful.
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image: In the Navel of the Moon by Mary Mattingly 2008
So I decided to follow my almond craving and had heard some good things about L'Artisan's Jour de Fete and some not so good things, in general the house of L'Artisan and I have had a no go relationship, except for making me love a floral, Le Chasse Aux Papillons. The notes for Jour de Fete are the stuff for making lovely scents: almond, pink laurel, wheat, orris, bourbon vanilla, cedarwood. In truth this is almond water, you can barely smell it, this smells like the memory of a babies head from 10 years ago. I smell this and I wish they had pumped up everything just a bit more.
I sit here eating summer in my palm, a stone fruit, a green plum, achingly sweet at one moment, and wonderfully tart the next moment. Yesterday was the first day of summer, I celebrated it in a soft vanillic musk, making dinner for Father's Day, all the windows open, with a soft breeze going throughout the apartment. Sometimes I forget how much I enjoy summer too often I just remember the blazing heat. I spritzed on Osmanthus Interdite and once again realized the only it really should be worn is in the summer, in other seasons it can rasp and seem high pitched, but in summer it blooms, melds with your skin, and just makes you feel like you glow. As the seasons change I change my fragrance wardrobe, some of them hold over from spring, and some through out the year. So here is what I should be wearing throughout summer.
*4711: The ultimate cooler in summer heat.
*Azuree Soleil: A summer vacation in the tropics but done in the most tasteful way.
*Bois des Iles: What I use when I need woods in the summer.
*Coco Madamoiselle: Jasmine and vetiver with a ton of class.
*Datura Noir: So cool and creamy; adult ice cream.
*Baghari: I lovely this orange creamy soft scent in the summer with the hints of earthy vetiver.
*Bvlgari pour femme: I love the mimosa halo this creates.
*Fleurs d'Osmanthus: Tropical osmanthus with notes of green sap.
*Infusion d'Iris: A soothing tonic in the summer heat.
*Kimono Rose: Citrus and black currents entwined with creamy jasmine.
*Le Chasse aux Papillons: Perfect fresh cool flowers just being put out in the sun.
Once again I am giving my full attention to a sample this week, this time Hermes' s Vanille Galante. What has struck me everytime I have tested it out is the saltiness of the scent. I have this image in my head of lilies by the ocean being misted over with salt water while an vanilla orchid blooms in the background. In my head it is tropical flowers growing on the coastline of Oregon.
So I can't stop my Guerlain madness at the moment because waftbycarol made remember that I have a sample of Sous le Vent which I will be putting on later after I take my shower. Today is one of those days where I have a ton of housework and errands. What I do remember of Sous Le Vent is the opening with lavender and enjoying it, but I remember not being to happy with the drydown, we'll see if this has changed.
Right now on my hand though I have Rochas Femme from a sample of mine and I forgot how wonderfully spicy and gorgeous this is, it always reminds me of spice dusted skin, I really should get a decant of this. This is also the scent I would scent Nigella Lawson with (I hear though she enjoys Coco by Chanel, which is appropiate!).
On to a little mini-sniffathon I had yesterday at the mall when I went to go get tea:
Tea Bergamot by L'Occitane: The opening of this is amazing, perfect juicy citrus, you just want to bite into, unfortunately the drydown did not live up to the opening. Still I will give L'Occitane this: They know how to do their citrus and tea scents.
Lace Orange Blossom by Victoria's Secret: I mainly tried this to see if the osmanthus showed through (it didn't), but I this really is a nice little orange blossom scent if you are looking for one.
Cashmere Vanilla Jasmine by Victoria's Secret: For lovers of BBW's Breathe Romance Sensous Amber & Myrrh go get Cashmere Vanilla Jasmine, very very similar but a little bit richer with just a hint of Sage Machado's Pearl.
La Lune by Dolce & Gabbana: This was really boring I was initially interested in this because of the use of leather and tuberose together, there is no leather, just a very boring floral in my opinion.
The weather is incredibly strange this June right now it is cool and overcast, usually at this point in the year the heat and I are battling it out, but not right now. I was going to wear Nuit de Cellophane today, but couldn't find my sample, so I reached for the ever beautiful Chanel N. 22. So yesterday evening after Apres L'Ondee wore off I put on a couple of dabs of Cuir Beluga and came to two conclusions 1) excellent strength and sillage and 2) It smells very similar to Ambra del Nepal (which does not have a $200+ price tag).
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image: Enticing Innocence by Patrick de Warren 2000
It's official I have found a new favorite photographer: Iris Brosch. So once again I try to delve into Guerlain and I think quite frankly it may be time I gave it up. Last week I ordered three samples: Cuir Beluga, Spiriteuse Double Vanille (may be one of the worst fragrance names ever), and Apres L'Ondee. So far I have tested Apres L'Ondee a few times and it has not meshed, but today I am giving it my full attention. SDV turned into a very regular vanilla on me. While I have enjoyed Cuir Beluga the price tag on it is well not going to make me buy it, I liked it but it was not love. The thing is I really do want a Guerlain to rhapsodize about...but none of the women's fragrances ever really mesh for me and while I love Guerlain's Vetiver it is not a scent that creates a dramatic response in me, it is a great cologne, sigh. Guerlain where did you and I go wrong? Okay we were never right in the first place.
Lately I have been having one of those note obsession moments, the one where you are looking for a new note to fall in love with, or in this case looking for a new variation on a note you love, in this case vanilla. For the heck of it I ordered a sample of Vanille by Calypso St. Celle, intrigued by the use of orange blossom. Well this isn't exactly what I was looking for while many have described this as non-foodie, but to me this smells like dulce de leche with a dash of sea salt and airy notes of orange blossom, pretty but not what I am wanting.
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image: At the Seashore by Richard Blossom Farley 1921
Sometimes a floral surprise comes along that you completely and utterly did not expect to like. I love big blooming magnolias and here in Northern California they are everywhere but too often when fragrances are supposed to be based on magnolia they smell like gardenia. The case of Kenzo's Eau Fleur de Magnolia is a true magnolia scent and one that is interesting entwined in this beauty is smoky lemony pine quality and a creaminess that never veers into sweet. Now I am going into blasphemy with a comparison but this sort've reminds me of Herme's Osmanthe Yunnan. This really is a treat I did not expect.
I had a long weekend on Saturday I met up with my boyfriend's friends and on Sunday I had dinner with my boyfriend's mother and stepfather, and I am having one of those Monday's where I want a weekend for my weekend. So I am going to spend the day in Annick Goutal's somewhat subdued amber, Ambre Fetiche, strangely esoteric and yet also very animalic.
On the bright note I made a delicious raspberry nectarine crisp yesterday for dinner and it went over very well. I used Mark Bittman's crisp recipe and made a few adjustments added more sugar because the nectarines were on th tart side and salt to the crisp topping (why do so many recipes for crisps forget this vital ingredient? Salt is what brings out that delicious golden buttery crispy goodness.).