Perfume Chat Room, May 6

Perfume Chat Room, May 6

Welcome to the weekly Perfume Chat Room, perfumistas! I envision this chat room as a weekly drop-in spot online, where readers may ask questions, suggest fragrances, tell others their SOTD, comment on new releases or old favorites, and respond to each other. The perennial theme is fragrance, but we can interpret that broadly. This is meant to be a kind space, so please try not to give or take offense, and let’s all agree to disagree when opinions differ. In fragrance as in life, your mileage may vary! YMMV.

Today is Friday, May 6, and my roses continue to flourish and bloom! I’ve added more photos to my Instagram account, if you’d like to see some of them up close. Most are “English Roses” by the late David Austin, an amazing hybridizer of roses who brought back the old-fashioned shapes and strong fragrance of older roses, but combined those with the range of colors and repeat-blooming habit of modern ones. One of the fascinating aspects of his roses is that many of them smell slightly different. All their scents are clearly “rose”, but some are more spicy, or fruity, or lemony. As you can tell, I love them.

Some of my English Roses

If you haven’t yet read this month’s “Scent Semantics” posts by the six participating bloggers, the word for May (chosen by Portia) is “brilliance.” You’ll find all the links here: Scent Semantics.

May is full of various celebrations: May Day, Star Wars Day, Cinco de Mayo, Mother’s Day, Memorial Day. I’ve just learned that in the Netherlands, May 5 is celebrated as Liberation Day, marking the end of Nazi occupation. May is the month of the annual RHS Chelsea Flower Show, which I’ve been able to visit twice and hope to visit again, maybe next year.

Chelsea Pensioner, at RHS Chelsea Flower Show

This year, Eid al Fitr (the end of Ramadan) was celebrated in the US in May; the dates change every year. Do you celebrate anything in particular in May?

Perfume Chat Room, April 1

Perfume Chat Room, April 1

Welcome to the weekly Perfume Chat Room, perfumistas! I envision this chat room as a weekly drop-in spot online, where readers may ask questions, suggest fragrances, tell others their SOTD, comment on new releases or old favorites, and respond to each other. The perennial theme is fragrance, but we can interpret that broadly. This is meant to be a kind space, so please try not to give or take offense, and let’s all agree to disagree when opinions differ. In fragrance as in life, your mileage may vary! YMMV.

Today is Friday, April 1 — Happy April Fools’ Day! I couldn’t think of an appropriate April Fools post for a fragrance blog, though my personal Facebook feed is blowing up with silly posts from friends. Also, “rabbit rabbit” for good luck this month, and don’t miss the April Scent Semantics posts from six bloggers next Monday! I got to choose the word for April, which is fun for me. But it’s a secret until Monday, so please check back!

This week, I had to attend a neighborhood meeting to discuss a proposal for designating our neighborhood as an official historic district, which would protect us from encroaching development, roadways, and demolitions of old houses. It has become a flashpoint of controversy, and a number of homeowners who don’t want additional restrictions on what they can do to their houses — if the houses were built before the 1960s — have become very angry, threatening to sue the neighborhood volunteers who lead our civic association. I didn’t want to go to the meeting, but went to support the beleaguered volunteers and to voice support for the historic designation. Whew! Glad the meeting is over, though the controversy continues! And yes, I wore Chanel No. 19 which is my fragrance armor.

Liv Tyler as Arwen, in The Fellowship of the Ring movie; New Line Cinema.
Liv Tyler as Arwen, in The Fellowship of the Ring movie; New Line Cinema.

Victoria at “Bois de Jasmin” has written very knowledgeably (as always) about Chanel No. 19. She discussed its reformulations, adding this historical insight:

A side note on galbanum, fragrance and politics. When Chanel No 19 was created in 1971, it was formulated with a superb grade of Iranian galbanum oil, which was sourced especially for it. However, when the Iranian Revolution broke out in 1979, the oil became unavailable. No 19 had to be reformulated, which was accomplished with much difficulty, because the original galbanum oil was of a particularly fine, rare caliber.

History. Always fascinating, sometimes enraging.

Do you have any thoughts on what fragrance to wear for April Fools’ Day? Or for “rabbit rabbit”? Or any fragrance-related history? Do share!

Perfume Chat Room, March 11

Perfume Chat Room, March 11

Welcome back to the weekly Perfume Chat Room, perfumistas! I envision this chat room as a weekly drop-in spot online, where readers may ask questions, suggest fragrances, tell others their SOTD, comment on new releases or old favorites, and respond to each other. The perennial theme is fragrance, but we can interpret that broadly. This is meant to be a kind space, so please try not to give or take offense, and let’s all agree to disagree when opinions differ. In fragrance as in life, your mileage may vary! YMMV.

Today is Friday, March 11, and it is the two-year anniversary of the World Health Organization’s announcement that COVID-19 had become officially a pandemic. Reading those words today and their warning is sobering, given how many mistakes were made and how many millions have died. I feel like Neil at The Black Narcissus, who was recently wondering why he writes (and we read) about perfume when the war in Ukraine — that started two weeks ago today — is so appalling. I think the answers in the comments to his post respond quite well to his question — if we have done what little we can to address human needs, we need respite from the unrelenting tide of awfulness; we need to pause and remember how much beauty there is in the world, and how lucky we are to be able to enjoy it. Victoria at “Bois de Jasmin”, who is Ukrainian, is trying to achieve that balance by posting about aid resources, her family home in Ukraine, and her friends (to put faces on the crisis).

The Friday community project at “Now Smell This” is to wear a fragrance that somehow captures for you the official anniversary of the pandemic. I’ve been struggling with this all week, but last night, the right choice for me popped into my head. It is Gardener’s Glove, from artisan perfumer Diane St. Clair of St. Clair Scents. When my family went into lockdown by the end of March 2020 (it took my workplace until the end of the month to send most employees home), I decided to start a vegetable garden. It was both a distraction and a way to make sure my family could have fresh vegetables, given uncertainty about supply chains. Gardener’s Glove and First Cut, also by St. Clair Scents, reminded me of my late father’s vegetable garden.

And sometimes, as Voltaire once wrote, our individual response to the world’s disasters, war, and cruelty must be to “cultivate one’s garden.” Writers have argued for centuries about his intended meaning. Is it cynical advice to turn away from the world’s suffering and sorrow, and isolate oneself in a comfortable retreat? Or is it a call to create and nurture beauty and fruitfulness within one’s limited control?

I choose the latter. Candide has witnessed the world’s suffering and has not forgotten it. We too can bear witness, and respond as best we can, and also continue to create and nurture. So I will give to Ukrainian relief, and follow the news, and appreciate my many blessings, which include fragrance, and cultivate my garden. If creators cease creating, the war-mongers have won, and the world will become even more grim.

Backyard vegetable garden
Old Herbaceous’ vegetable garden, Winter 2021-22

Are you marking today’s anniversary in any way? Do you associate any particular fragrance with the last two years? Or, how do you cultivate your own “garden”?

Perfume Chat Room, March 4

Perfume Chat Room, March 4

Welcome back to the weekly Perfume Chat Room, perfumistas! I envision this chat room as a weekly drop-in spot online, where readers may ask questions, suggest fragrances, tell others their SOTD, comment on new releases or old favorites, and respond to each other. The perennial theme is fragrance, but we can interpret that broadly. This is meant to be a kind space, so please try not to give or take offense, and let’s all agree to disagree when opinions differ. In fragrance as in life, your mileage may vary! YMMV.

Today is Friday, March 4, and I am officially on spring break! The coming week is when the university where I work will not hold classes; most students and faculty will leave town; so I’m at liberty to take a week-long vacation. Hurray! To be honest, I feel the need for it quite acutely this year. Spring break was the week when everything changed in 2020 due to the pandemic. It’s hard to believe that two years have elapsed since then. I feel so lucky, though, that our family remained safe and healthy.

The war in Ukraine continues. As this is a fragrance blog, I’ve tried to learn more about perfumery in Ukraine. I found this article; and this perfumer, Oleksandr Perevertaylo, listed on Fragrantica with his house Partisan Perfumes. One of his creations, Coven, was very favorably reviewed and awarded three starts by Luca Turin in “Perfumes: The Guide 2018.”

There is always joy in discovering new talent, and Aleksandr [sic] Perevertaylo is definitely one, possessed with the perfumery equivalent of that elusive things writers hanker after, a voice. He composes perfumes in Dnipro, recently renamed (for only the eighth time since its foundation) from Dnepropetrovsk. Coven is his most classical fragrance, and a very solid piece of work it is, in a buttery-floral manner that puts me in mind of a denser version of Molyneux’s Vivre, long discontinued.

M. Turin also praised M. Perevertaylo’s Porto de Rosa, putting it alongside Tocade and Galop as “a rose that makes you reconsider set ideas about that supposedly familiar flower.” Silky Way and Sugar Daddy also earned three stars, and Silly Love earned four stars and the praise that it was “brilliant work.” I haven’t had the opportunity to try any of these, or the 2021 release Partisan, but I hope to do so one day. Victoria at Bois de Jasmin has also written about a favorite niche perfumery in Kyiv, Le Flacon; I hope its owners and staff are safe.

I have been dipping into a fascinating book that covers part of the history of Russian perfumery, “The Scent of Empires: Chanel No.5 and Red Moscow”, by Karl Schlogel. Now that I’m on vacation, I plan to read it more thoroughly.

Do you have any experience with, or insights into, perfume in Ukraine or Russia? Or do you have any favorite books about perfume, whether fact or fiction or reviews?

Flowering branch of yellow mimosa
Mimosa in bloom; in honor of International Women’s Day, March 8
Perfume Chat Room, February 25

Perfume Chat Room, February 25

Welcome back to the weekly Perfume Chat Room, perfumistas! I envision this chat room as a weekly drop-in spot online, where readers may ask questions, suggest fragrances, tell others their SOTD, comment on new releases or old favorites, and respond to each other. The perennial theme is fragrance, but we can interpret that broadly. This is meant to be a kind space, so please try not to give or take offense, and let’s all agree to disagree when opinions differ. In fragrance as in life, your mileage may vary! YMMV.

Today is Friday, February 25, and it is a somber day in Eastern Europe. Russian forces have invaded Ukraine. Thousands of anti-war protesters in Russia and other former Soviet countries have taken to the streets. Tens of thousands of Ukrainian civilians are fleeing west. Whatever one thinks of the geopolitics involved, one can surely feel for the residents of Ukraine whose lives have been turned upside-down. My heart goes out to them.

Some of you probably also read the wonderful blog Bois de Jasmin, written by Victoria Frolova. Although Victoria lives in Brussels, Belgium (where I spent part of my childhood), she is Ukrainian by birth, and she traces much of her love of fragrance back to her years of visiting family in Poltava. She has been my own little window into a part of the world I don’t know well; I pray that her family, friends, and their hometown remain unharmed.

Today is ex-Beatle George Harrison’s birthday, and in honor of that, the “community project” at Now Smell This is to pair a fragrance with a song by George Harrison or the Beatles. Robin thinks that was my idea at some point; I don’t remember suggesting it, but I’m happy to take credit! The clear choice for my SOTD is my beloved Ostara, the very fragrance of yellow daffodils, paired with one of my favorite songs by George Harrison, “Here Comes The Sun.”

Gibbs Gardens daffodils; song by the Beatles; copyright and credits here.

I recently watched the documentary “Get Back”, about the Beatles’ work on their album “Let It Be”, and it shows very clearly some of the tension among the Fab Four, but also the joy and fun they often had while working together. Sadly, it really does show how George was sometimes brushed aside as a songwriter and wrote many of his songs on his own, unlike the formidable Lennon/McCartney songwriting partnership. Watching the documentary was like watching a marriage break up in slow motion. There was still so much love and affection, and many moments of laughter, but it seemed to me that John Lennon was clearly pulling away, Paul McCartney was like the partner who sees this long relationship ending, against his wishes, George was like the child whose needs are being overlooked because of the marital drama, and Ringo Starr was like the kid who’s just trying to make everyone happy by putting his head down and doing his job. At some point in this era, though not on film, Lennon apparently referred to his desire to leave the group as “wanting a divorce.”

“Here Comes The Sun”, released on the album “Abbey Road,” was written by George after a day spent in the sunny garden of his friend Eric Clapton. I have read that it is the most streamed Beatles song on Spotify, which is remarkable given their legendary output. I also have fond memories of it because it was my youngest child’s very favorite song of any when he was a little boy, which matched his sunny, happy disposition. Happy birthday, George, and thank you for helping to create the most memorable songs I recall from my childhood and beyond!

Hillside covered with daffodils at Gibbs Gardens
Daffodils at Gibbs Gardens
Perfume Chat Room, February 11

Perfume Chat Room, February 11

Welcome back to the weekly Perfume Chat Room, perfumistas! I envision this chat room as a weekly drop-in spot online, where readers may ask questions, suggest fragrances, tell others their SOTD, comment on new releases or old favorites, and respond to each other. The perennial theme is fragrance, but we can interpret that broadly. This is meant to be a kind space, so please try not to give or take offense, and let’s all agree to disagree when opinions differ. In fragrance as in life, your mileage may vary! YMMV.

Today is Friday, February 11, and it’s almost Valentine’s Day! Since perfume and other fragrance gifts are often given for Valentine’s Day, do you expect to give or get any? Anything you are secretly hoping to receive? I don’t yearn for these chocolates myself, but I certainly wouldn’t turn my nose up at them! Pun intended. And don’t miss the full review of the chocolates by Nose Prose!

Box of Valentine's heart-shaped chocolates
Neuhaus “perfume” chocolates; image from Neuhaus.

Like many perfumistas, I’ve already chosen and bought the fragrance I’d like to receive from my husband, lol. I haven’t opened it yet, though!! For any new readers: I am blessed, like many of you, with a partner who indulges my hobby/obsession. He has even picked out some of my favorites completely on his own, and when we travel (at least, when we did travel, in the before times), he will go with me to perfumeries and encourage me to buy fragrances.

The perfume I chose for myself was Lancome’s Peut-Etre, which I had been eyeing for some time. When I got an email offer in January for 40% off one item on their website, plus gifts with purchase, I caved. Considering that the gifts with purchase (full sizes of several skincare and cosmetics items) were said to have a combined retail value well above $200, the perfume was perfume-math free! Or so I tell myself.

Peut-Etre is said to be a musky, powdery rose, and it was created by Nathalie Lorson, so it was definitely calling my name. Plus I love the bottles in the Maison Lancome line, they’re so pretty! I’ll let you all know what it’s like, once I open it! And if I do another “Roses de Mai Marathon“, I’ll review it there.

If you haven’t yet browsed this month’s Scent Semantics posts, please do! You’ll find links to all six blogs here. This month’s word is “taste”, and it has been so much fun to read my fellow bloggers’ thoughts!

Scent Semantics blog list
Scent Semantics, February 7, 2022

Scent Semantics, February 7, 2022

This month’s Scent Semantics word is “taste”. Among other challenges in writing about that word and fragrance, I don’t own many gourmand fragrances, it’s not a category that particularly appeals to me above others. Then my blogging friend Nose Prose posted recently about Belgian chocolates that were inspired by Guerlain fragrances, ordered after an article about them in Fragrantica, and that sent me in a new direction.

It is a truism in reading and writing about fragrance that the sense of smell is intimately linked to the sense of taste; and we’ve had our noses rubbed in that, so to speak, during a pandemic in which an early symptom for many people, including one of my daughters, was the loss of their sense of smell. The absence of smell also deprives most people of their sense of taste, and that was her experience. (Luckily, hers started to come back after about a week, as she recovered from COVID-19 pretty quickly, and is now fully restored). Without smell, there is very little taste, which chefs know well, but we usually think of that in terms of spices and aromatic edibles. Some chefs and others have taken this a step further; I love the notion of creative food artists taking their inspiration from perfume, as well as perfumes inspired by cocktails.

Here’s what Nose Prose wrote, in part, about the Guerlain-inspired chocolates after actually ordering and tasting them:

The milk chocolate heart, inspired by L’Homme Idéal, is half praliné with roasted sesame seeds and half almond and green tea “with a hint of matcha.” This one is the most textured of the three, which suits itssavory flavor notes. Matcha seems to find a way to go well with everything.

The red heart made of white chocolate is inspired by La Petite Robe Noire and filled with half dark chocolate ganache with cherries and half praliné with hazelnuts. This fusion brings together the best of both worlds, which are usually enjoyed separately.

Finally, the dark heart inspired by Mon Guerlain is half dark chocolate ganache with bergamot and half milk chocolate ganache with lavender and chili. This I found to be a brilliant combination and despite my usual preference for milk chocolate over dark chocolate, this was my favorite of the three. I would love to see bergamot used more in food and drink besides Earl Grey tea.

Box of Valentine's heart-shaped chocolates
Neuhaus “perfume” chocolates; image from Neuhaus.

Aren’t they pretty? I love chocolate, especially dark chocolate, but it seems as if there are more drinks inspired by perfumes than chocolates. There are “mixologists” who have created cocktails based on famous fragrances. Vogue magazine even published a few recipes so we can make some at home, and so has Creed. I’m not much of a cocktail aficionado, but the descriptions of these makes them sound very alluring. Probably the most famous bar doing this work is Fragrances, a bar in the Berlin Ritz-Carlton, which began with a cocktail based on Guerlain’s Jicky: “One perfume in particular, Jicky by Guerlain, the oldest continuously produced perfume in the world, inspired him to deconstruct its ingredients. The result was a cocktail made with bergamot, vanilla, lavender, rosemary, and lemon.” Doesn’t that sound delicious?

Ten years ago, the Food 52 blog posted about a special four-course dinner designed as a collaboration between the chef, fragrance house MCMC, and perfumer Anne McClain. Now that’s a challenge! It makes sense to base cocktails on fragrances, as they both use notes of various herbs, fruits, florals — but an entire dinner?

My fantasy dinner menu would probably start with a citrus of some kind, to emulate top notes — perhaps a grapefruit salad with mint leaves, garnished with jasmine blossoms for scent only, inspired by Jo by Jo Loves.

Salad of grapefruit segments with mint
Grapefruit mint salad; the Food Network.

That could be followed by a cold soup, maybe with melon, tangerine and plum, harking to Le Parfum de Therèse by Edmond Roudnitska.

Bowl of chilled plum soup with flavored ice
Plum, honeydew, and tarragon soup; Gourmet magazine

What to do about a main course, though? I don’t know many fragrances based on the odors of fish, meat, or poultry, so we’ll either have to stay vegetarian or pick a main course where the focus is on an aromatic sauce. Basil is a clear contender, but that immediately brings to mind pesto, which has a lot of garlic, so my menu will have to be more creative. I think a Thai dish would suit, with a combination of basil, coconut, spices, lime, ginger — and that sounds a lot like Yosh’s Ginger Ciao.

Bowl of vegan Thai curry
Vegan thai basil curry with lime and coconut; from Let’s Be Vegan.

Dessert course? I think that must be a lemon/vanilla soufflé, with a touch of bergamot and mandarin orange, inspired by Shalimar Souffle de Parfum, created by Thierry Wasser.

Lemon souffle in ramekin
Lemon soufflé; image from The New York Times.

Coffee, anyone? There are so many fragrances that include notes of coffee, I’ll let you decide which one appeals to you to finish out our fragrant dinner. What might you have on your own fragrant menu? Don’t forget to check out the posts by the other Scent Semantics bloggers!

Scent Semantics blog list
Perfume Chat Room, February 4

Perfume Chat Room, February 4

Welcome back to the weekly Perfume Chat Room, perfumistas! I envision this chat room as a weekly drop-in spot online, where readers may ask questions, suggest fragrances, tell others their SOTD, comment on new releases or old favorites, and respond to each other. The perennial theme is fragrance, but we can interpret that broadly. This is meant to be a kind space, so please try not to give or take offense, and let’s all agree to disagree when opinions differ. In fragrance as in life, your mileage may vary! YMMV.

Today is Friday, February 4, the first Friday of the month; and next Monday will be the monthly “Scent Semantics” post! Come back on Monday and visit all the Scent Semantics blogs to find out the word of the month and how we connect it to fragrance.

I’ve been enjoying some fragrance in my garden lately, despite some bouts of temperatures below freezing and even a few snow flurries! (I know, I know, those of you who live in snowier climes are laughing hysterically right now). The mahonias are in bloom, and they smell like lily of the valley.

Mahonia shrub with yellow flowers
Mahonia Lomariiflora in the Saville Garden, Surrey, UK October; image from Southern Living

I also have a Chimonanthus praecox, or wintersweet, which wafts from its odd blossoms. A few brave narcissi have decided to bloom. Until recently, I have had a few late blossoms on my roses, which were fragrant (I mostly grow David Austin English Roses, which are bred for fragrance as well as visual beauty). Those are gone now because I have done the recommended annual pruning, which results in short, leafless stems until the spring growth bursts forth. I also have a new camellia, not yet in the ground, which is supposed to have fragrant flowers; it has lots of buds, so we’ll see if it lives up to advance billing.

This is often a transitional season for fragrance, the bridge between the warmer, spicier scents many of us choose in wintertime and the green and/or floral scents many wear in springtime. I’m still getting a lot of pleasure from my Musc Intense by Parfums de Nicolai; it has a top note of fresh pear that looks ahead to spring, but the cozy musk works well for cooler weather. What are you wearing these days?

Perfume Chat Room, January 28

Perfume Chat Room, January 28

Welcome back to the weekly Perfume Chat Room, perfumistas! I envision this chat room as a weekly drop-in spot online, where readers may ask questions, suggest fragrances, tell others their SOTD, comment on new releases or old favorites, and respond to each other. The perennial theme is fragrance, but we can interpret that broadly. This is meant to be a kind space, so please try not to give or take offense, and let’s all agree to disagree when opinions differ. In fragrance as in life, your mileage may vary! YMMV.

Today is Friday, January 28, and I have surprised myself by how much I’m enjoying a fragrance whose name initially deterred me: Parfums de Nicolai’s Musc Intense. I don’t usually think of musky fragrances as something I’ll like, and “intense” in a fragrance name often indicates it is a flanker of something else, amped up to a degree I may not appreciate (much as I do love Tiffany & Co. Intense). But when I read the notes listed on Fragrantica, they sounded very appealing, so I took a chance (yes, it was a blind buy, naughty me; but I have loved every Nicolai fragrance I’ve tried to date, so it wasn’t completely reckless). Top notes — Turkish Rose, Pear and Galbanum; middle notes — Rose, Violet, Carnation and Jasmine; base notes — Musk, Civet, Amber and Sandalwood.

Wow! Musc Intense is just lovely. Soft, warm, but persistent — I can still smell it on my wrists after a light application 24 hours ago. It clings to clothing, too, in a very agreeable way. This is now a contender with Jicky eau de toilette for favorite bedtime scent. It smells cuddly and also floral, with a bit of fruit; the pear note in the opening is just right, a light touch of fruitiness that is also a bit green. Don’t laugh, but the drydown of Musc Intense evokes clean baby animals, like a freshly washed puppy.

Have you ever been put off by the name of a fragrance only to find, to your surprise, that you like it very much?

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com
Perfume Chat Room, January 7

Perfume Chat Room, January 7

Welcome back to the weekly Perfume Chat Room, perfumistas! I envision this chat room as a weekly drop-in spot online, where readers may ask questions, suggest fragrances, tell others their SOTD, comment on new releases or old favorites, and respond to each other. The perennial theme is fragrance, but we can interpret that broadly. This is meant to be a kind space, so please try not to give or take offense, and let’s all agree to disagree when opinions differ. In fragrance as in life, your mileage may vary! YMMV.

Today is Friday, January 7, and it is 2022! Earlier this week, my fellow bloggers and I posted our monthly “Scent Semantics” post for January, riffing off the word “luscious.” Check out the posts on six different fragrance blogs!

The numbers 2022 in fireworks
2022 in fireworks; image from parade.com

Like many other Americans, my work week began again post-holidays, but we’re back to remote work because of the massive surge in omicron variant COVID cases. I feel much less anxious about it this time.

Instead of “dry January”, I’m going to make a conscious effort to minimize fragrance purchases this month, since I took full advantage of many sales and discounts before, during, and after Christmas! Most of those were from small or independent perfumers or perfumeries, so I don’t feel bad about supporting them. This month, I’m enjoying the “January Joy Box” from 4160 Tuesdays, which is a box of 15 fragrances, most of them limited editions or not yet in the main 4160 Tuesdays line, to be opened one at a time, every other day, in numbered order. Sarah McCartney started this annual tradition a few years ago, and it is great fun! It’s like a January Advent calendar. Lots of chatter about each fragrance on 4160 Tuesdays’ Facebook pages!

So far, I’ve opened 1) Spellbinder; 2) Cherry Who?; and 3) Dawn to Dusk. Of those, so far my favorite is Spellbinder, which Sarah actually created for an independent US business called Haunted Saginaw (the fragrances are labeled “13th Floor Fragrance Co.”). Here’s the published description:

Rich and luxurious tonka beans infused with superior Madagascar vanilla, bursting with a citrus & slightly earthy opening (Bergamot, Mandarin, Tart Cranberry & ripened Rhubarb) intertwined with a dark forest of woods (Cedar, Sandalwood, Cashmere) into a slightly smokey veil ( Sweet Tobacco, Incense & Leather) sensually merging into a dark floral heart ( Jasmine, Violet, and exotic Ylang Ylang) surrounded by an array of arromatic spices ( Cardamom, Nutmeg & more).

If this sounds like something you must have, it can still be purchased at the Haunted Saginaw website. By the way, Sarah and fragrance blogger Sam Scriven from “I Scent You A Day” published their book this fall, “The Perfume Companion“, and it is great fun. I love that two bloggers I follow, Sam and Neil Chapman of “The Black Narcissus” have both published books in recent years. I love reading their insights, and both books are great for browsing.

On the topic of books, one of my Christmas gifts this year, which I’ve just started reading, is the book “The Scent of Empires: Chanel No.5 and Red Moscow“, by Karl Schlogel. Already it promises to be fascinating to this history nerd!

Have you started off your New Year in any new fragrances, or with any new books? Do tell!