As you may know, renowned perfumer Clement Gavarry has been working on creating “Holy Grail,” signature scent for Marina (a.k.a. Colombina the Terrible) of Perfume-Smellin´ Things. The creative process is being posted on Made by Blog, where there is another fragrance under construction for Katie of Scentzilla. Marina is looking for a fragrance I will refer to as “a wearable MKK” with a skank factor of at least 8 (with MKK being a 10).
I´ve smelled the first two mods, and Clement still has a fair distance to travel down the road to Skankdom, although I am sure he will get there. At any rate, musing on these mods, I came up with an idea so boneheaded and completely wrong that I knew at once I had to do it. I created, over the weekend, three potential Holy Grail fragrances using combinations of existing fragrances. I have sent these sample viles vials off to Marina for her ridicule, and she will be posting her review of them at some point (assuming they don´t kill her), along with her best guess as to their compositions. I´ll let you know when her review is going up. I am sure Mr. Gavarry will ultimately create her perfect HG, using, you know, genuine perfumery skills as opposed to my laughable rip-offs, but why not have fun while we wait?
Disclaimer: I am aware that my little project is, on its face, absurd, and does not begin to approach the true art of perfumery. Any resemblance to Marina´s final Holy Grail will be purely coincidental. Furthermore, I am not poking fun at Made By Blog, a project that is fascinating and inspires both awe and envy in me.
On to the candy:
Reichenbach Golden Drop EDT – From Scentzilla, source of many fragrance oddities. I can´t find a single note on this, so I´m on my own. This fragrance illustrates the many wonders of Difference in Perception, because she included a warning not to smell it under any circumstances for the first half hour, and then it would morph into something special. Well, hon, of course I spent the first half hour sniffing it enthusiastically, waiting for whatever horror you were trying to spare me. I´m guessing its dirty-old-lady-perfume vibe puts you off? (An aside: generally I perk right up when reviewers on MUA or Basenotes complain that some fragrance is old-ladyish, because that usually means it´s a chypre, or maybe an ornate floriental, and thus I´ll probably like it.) I thought the first half-hour was great, in a mink stole, don´t stand-too-close-in-the-elevator way. You´re right, though – it dries down into a 60/40 incense/floral on me that is so delicious I want to lick my arm. This thing is $24 on PerfumeMart, which means I´ve probably just written a paean to something approximating Stetson, right?
Parfumerie Generale Iris Taizo – Patty sent me a bunch of PGs. First of all, I´d like to thank Patty for sharing this windfall of weird fragrance love. Second, I´d like to remind everyone that Iris Taizo is the fragrance Patty declared such a total scrubber that she posted that great picture of the woman in a gas mask. Third, I refuse to believe this is Iris. Iris only smells like urine or feet on me. This smells like — okay, it still doesn´t smell like an iris flower, and I know, I know, they never do. But it´s sharp and sweet, honeyed incense, and the cardamom makes the iris note is less powdery, more shimmering. This must smell like what folks are getting when they´re waxing all poetic over Iris Silver Mist, when all I get from ISM is armpit, a frowny face, and, if I don´t scrub fast enough, a migraine. (incense, cardamom, iris, Jinkoh wood, fig-tree honey.) Patty, I think it must have been the honey that killed you.
Parfumerie Generale Harmatan Noir – Patty and Colombina gave this the big thumbs up, so in our weird Triangulation Venn Diagram, of course I´d hate it. What are you two gals going on and on about, with the tea, the tea, the glorious tea? (Colombina even called it “darker and smokier than lapsang”?!) I don´t even get tea, much less the incense and patchouli. All I get is 90% ambered honey, which is pretty enough, but the deal-killer is the 10% dish-soap overlay. Ugh. Where´s that gas mask?
Parfumerie Generale Buttcrack Asso Aomassai – (caramel, hazelnut, spices, vetiver, bitter orange, balsam wood, incense, licorice, wenge wood, resins.) First fifteen minutes: cràƒ¨me brulee, candle wax and buttcrack. Total Scrubber. I left it on out of sheer perversity — I figured the drydown couldn´t get any worse. After half an hour that heinous sweetness disappears and it´s completely different, sort of a woody, spicy smell with what registers to me as strong pipe tobacco, although that´s obviously not in the notes. I still wasn´t wild about the fragrance on my arm, but I think it would be a great room spray.
Paul & Joe Blanc – (Hawthorn, Angelica, Almond, Sweet Pea, Freesia, Rose, Musk, Heliotrope, Cloud of Milk.) Yikes. This is a fabulous fragrance — on someone else. I think it´s the hawthorn and angelica that´s chafing me? I´ll try it again in a few days, but my guess is it´s coming up soon in a bottle giveaway.
Caron Montaigne – I tried. I really did. I opened my leetle tiiny mind up as wide as it could go and just took it in. And this one just confirms. That. Caron. Is. Not. For. Me. Again, objectively, this is a gorgeous fragrance. But that base! (Caron base: geranium, licorice, leather, iodine, and vanillin.) I can´t get away from it fast enough. You Caron fiends should definitely check it out, though.
Patou Vacances – I . want — I want to bathe in this. Come hither, perfumed slave boys, and tend to me! Grandma´s lilac, but only if Grandma drove a Bugatti and married a member of minor European royalty. Lilac, something green — I Am The Queen.
This week´s sample giveaway is — Apothia! Your own professionally sealed, store samples of Velvet Rope, L, and If. If you want them, say so in the comments below. I´ll announce the winner Thursday.
mad scientist image: www.billpappas.com