Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Rose Essentielle

St. Theresa of Lisieux (The Little Flower) is the Patroness of florists, pilots, and of France. (possibly because she was French, flew around in the sky, and smelled like roses even though she wore no perfumes) In "The Dharma Bums" a novel by Jack Kerouac, a hobo tells a young man about St. Theresa and how she promised to shower the earth with roses from heaven, forever, for all living creatures. She did a good job showering my yard.

Rose Essentielle by Bulgari is a true rose scent, light but enduring, and it smells like the roses in my yard. (pictured here)

Monday, September 29, 2008

Eddy's Perfume Review

Eddy has been with us for 90 days now, and his warranty has expired. Time for him to earn his keep helping Ched review scents.

Iris Ganache by Guerlain. This (if properly applied) is a light warm scent. Iris butter blended with patchouli and cinnamon makes it both spicy and gourmand. Lightly sweet unless you pour it on. (Why is it that excitable humans tend to overdo it?) I suppose you humans think more is better. Yikes.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Maeve Brennan Again

I was thrilled when Maeve's stories were collected and reprinted. I have been a fan of hers for many years. I've mentioned her in at least 4 blog posts, like this one.

After her death, Maeve Brennan was called a genius. In life she was loved by her many friends. Angela Bourke, Maeve's biographer described her office at the New Yorker:

"Glass panels in the metal door dribbled light into the corridor of Sleepy Hollow, but Maeve worked with her door open, and instead of the dreary cells the men tolerated, her little office became a bright and fragrant space, where she would sit behind her typewriter, wearing enormous reading glasses. She smoked constantly, but so did everybody else, and Maeve wore Russian Leather perfume that wafted along the corridors and gathered in her room. She brought in potted plants, had the walls painted white, the ceiling Wedgwood blue..."

They no longer use the same formula for Russian Leather, the new scent smells very similar, but toned down. The original had more Pizzazz -- the word Pizzazz was coined by Diana Vreeland, editor of Harper's Bazaar, (where Maeve once worked.)

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Mariella Burani

I was able to thoroughly test Mariella Burani products since I found a perfume shop that had several gift sets and bottles. They were using one of the gift sets as a tester. The perfume itself smells like something that was created long ago, something that only Mrs. Gottrocks could afford to wear. It smells expensive and tres chic. Wearing Mariella Burani might forever ruin some of the classics for you, as it feels warmer, richer, and you'd reach for it instead.

Avin ( the SA pictured) was captivated by it. for her it held some memory of a scent, a favorite place, ( so real it evoked strong emotion, yet she could not place it.) For me it is the best of all the classic Aldehydic scents, each note captured perfectly. The strong citrus and aldehydes at the top, the violets and roses blooming in the heart, with unusual notes chiming in. It is a masterpiece that is still available online and in some shops. Warning: For evening wear only unless you are a daring femme fatale.

Mariella Burani 1992
Head: Bergamot, Mandarin, Orange, Grapefruit, Lemon, Aldehydes
Heart: Rose, Violet, Ylang, Ylang, Peach, Iris, Lily,
Geranium, Coconut, Jasmine
Base: Cedar, Balsam, Sandalwood, Vetiver, Vanilla, Musk, Oakwood, Tolu, Styrax, Labdanum, Castoreum, Benzoin.
A Powerful, deeply satisfying, classic yet sultry evening scent.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Donovan does Guerlain

Donovan: Wait, Bob! Before you fire up a ciggie, try my truly gorgeous new 'fume!

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Thierry Wasser at Guerlain

Thierry Wasser (seen here with Jean Paul Guerlain) was born near Lake Geneva in Switzerland. Obsessed with botany and earth science as a child, he received his degree in Botany at age twenty. Four years later Wasser was a Junior Perfumer with a degree from Givaudan. If you've tried Dior's Addict or Lancome's Hypnose, you've experienced the creativity of Thierry Wasser who is now the head perfumer at Guerlain.

Wasser is the nose behind 2007's Quand Vient La Pluie, (bergamot, heliotrope, violet, jasmine; patchouli leaves, praline note, white musk, herbs, woods.) and Iris Ganache (bergamot, vanilla, cinnamon, and iris butter in a patchouli base.) Both are excellent~ elegant yet modern.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Angelique Noire

Today I was reading a post at Merle Sneed's
blog. I thought, hmmm... Sneed's blog smells really good.
Then I realized it was the Angelique Noire I had put on this morning. I went out to get a haircut, and afterwards as I was
walking to the liquor store I thought...this haircut smells so good. Then I realized it was the Angelique Noire. This kept happening to me all day. I thought the perfume had faded, but it kept wafting back, probably due in part to my incredibly warm, soft skin.
( I am a bit tipsy as I write this )
Angelique Noire is a dark angel, a mysterious blend of notes
that always surprises me when I wear it. Always.
Perfumer: Danièle Andrier
Some of the notes are Angelica, Bergamot, Spices,
Almond Wood, and the famous Guerlain Vanilla.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Gossamer and Kirsch

Gossamer was hard to love. At first he scared me the same way he scared Bugs Bunny. Then I liked him just a little, then I felt he was endearing & sweet, or he tried to be sweet. This reminded me of his perfume look-alike that smells like Cherry Liqueur. I wasn't so sure about that at first either. But I came to accept Delices De Cartier just as I had accepted Gossamer. They are both lovable.

-Photo of Gossamer with his hair in TNT curlers at Bugs Bunny's beauty salon.
This was JUST before his head exploded.

* Update

Unlike cherry liqueurs and many 'cherry brandies', Kirschwasser is not sweet. The best Kirsch has a highly refined taste with subtle flavors of morello cherry and a slight bitterness from the stone.

Cherry Brandy is much sweeter and not as nice to drink. The fact that Delices de Cartier smells like a tart cherry Kirsch rather than cherry brandy or cherry candy/ cough drops is what makes it a worthwhile perfume. It will not bring to mind candy or cough syrup, but it is a very boozy scent.

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Bob Dylan in Houndstooth

I don't display perfume bottles until they are empty. While removing the metal cap and plastic tubing, I finally noticed the houndstooth design on the bottom of the Miss Dior Cherie Bottle.
I used this perfume all summer and never noticed the pattern etched on bottom of the bottle.

I've wanted to do a post on the sculptors who design perfume bottles for awhile, but the pattern got me thinking about clothing designers who also decide to make perfumes. Some, like Dior and Chanel, create classics and some use the cheapest chemicals possible to make a fast buck.

And seeing the houndstooth pattern made me think about Dylan's transformation from his old Folksinger clothing to Mod suits. It wasn't a shocking, sudden transformation, but over a five year period he goes from shabby to sharp, from hobo to hipster. Still some people are offended by the changes in his musical and personal style and hate him for it.

On May 17, 1966, Bob Dylan stands on an English stage, wearing a fitted houndstooth suit and pointed boots in front of a 5 piece band with his fender stratocaster, playing rock and roll. There are boos and catcalls from the audience, as some feel he has sold out by "going electric" and finally, just before the last number, someone in the audience screams "Judas!" at him.

Sometimes I think even the 'very resistant to change' are transformed, even if it is only a slight change of thought, or for some, maybe not much more than a new haircut. But I can't imagine anyone wanting to be the same person they were a decade ago.

"A worried man with a worried mind
No one in front of me and nothing behind
There's a woman on my lap and she's drinking champagne
Got white skin, got assassin's eyes
I'm looking up into the sapphire tinted skies
I'm well dressed, waiting on the last train
Standing on the gallows with my head in a noose
Any minute now I'm expecting all hell to break loose
People are crazy and times are strange
I'm locked in tight, I'm out of range
I used to care, but things have changed."
--Bob Dylan

A Post for Victor Tabbycat

Now that September is here, it's time to start sampling some scents. I chose Sensual Amber by The Bath & Body Works because it's a warm, rich amber, perfect to have on hand for that first chilly day. The head notes contain a bit of fruit, so it seems sweet at first, but that doesn't last long. The woodsy soul of the scent make this a joy to wear, and at under twenty dollars, it's a bargain. It smells as good and lasts as long as similar scents that cost three times more.

Inspired by Victor Tabbycat, this film is a look at a Starling who crashes a party. The Starling didn't follow direction very well, though, he had an attitude, came in late and dropped some of the big crumb he was supposed to walk off with, plus he flew in when he was supposed to walk in. He refused to do a re-shoot. Typical. Everyone knows how frustrating these birds can be. Why do you think they call it 'flipping the bird' ? Exactly.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008


Insolence by Guerlain 2006
Perfumer: Maurice Roucel
Bottle design: Serge Mansau
Notes of violets, iris, and berries.
For casual wear.

Jardin for Marguerite

The path to Marguerite's jardin?

This one is for Marguerite, who has a very inspiring garden. This was made for Marguerite on a sultry day in a weedy garden, not one as well tended as Marguerite's own jardin.

I'm always amazed at how blogger shrinks down my movies and blurs them. (sigh)