The Number


Thanks for everyone’s input on the blog setup last week.  So.  We won’t do jumps, we’re working on the blog ads, and I’m still trying to fix the errant comments box.  Also, I know it’s our problem and not yours, but FWIW several people said after they added on or upgraded their adware on Safari, Firefox, etc., the popups went away, and others said that clicking directly through to comments seems to suppress them.

Another commenter said, very politely, that preferably we’d stay on topic – perfume – and leave the off-topic posts on makeup, etc. to weekends.  I replied that I understood and that, at least in my case, my off topic posts were born of desperation.  Inconceivable as it may seem, I can sniff samples for days and be uninspired by any of them.  I got another (very polite) reply that a “meh” review of something was okay.  And I’ll reply here that, again, in my case, I hate writing those.  They cause me physical pain.  They bore me to write them, so I can only assume that they’re boring to read.  And unless you’re Guerlain, I’ve pretty much stopped writing the really mean reviews, they make me feel petty.  It is utterly reasonable to show up to a perfume blog expecting something about … you know … perfume.  I just thought I’d throw out my two scents (I just typo’d it that way so I’m leaving it) about why you sometimes don’t get a perfume review.

Today I’m proposing a taboo topic – The Number.  That is, how many bottles of perfume do you own?  The Number is – like the number of one’s past lovers – often kept concealed and referred to obliquely, if at all.  Too low a number and you look like an amateur.  Too high and you look like a freak, or greedy.  I am sure that just reading this paragraph has caused some hearts to start beating faster in alarm.

This came up in my mind recently when a friend asked me (related to something else) how many bottles I had, although I don’t think she even put it that directly.  More related to storage issues.  I hemmed and hawed.  I equivocated.  Finally I offered this: I’d do a quick count of the number of bottles immediately visible on my walk-in closet shelves.

The quick-count number was 82.  My friend was impressed, and/or possibly a little weirded out.  How, she wondered, do you wind up with all those bottles?

Now.  Let us pretend, for the purposes of discussion, that 82 represents half my collection.  Which it does not.  It does not include bottles stored in the closet chest, backup bottles (Barbara Bui!  Theorema!), bottles boxed up until they’re in season or, uh, bottles kept elsewhere in the house. And this does not include samples or decants, “decant” defined as anything other than a manufacturer’s bottle.  But let’s double that 82, then round up generously and call it an even 200.  And then let’s peer into the brains of people reading these words.

Some of you are thinking: this woman is a total amateur.  I cannot believe I have wasted two years of my life reading anything she has ever said.  I am removing her from my bookmarks this instant.  For every one of those people, there are others who are thinking, 200 bottles of perfume in her closet?!?!?  What an amazing waste of money!  And shoe storage!!

There are people who hit the hundred or thousand-bottle mark and keep right on going.  There are people who have special storage arrangements constructed for their fragrances.  There are people who can’t face moving, because how to pack up all those bottles?

And you know what?  I am fine with that.  Eight bottles or eight hundred, whatever makes your wheels spin.   I can only address my particular case.  I don’t mind the samples, which I sort and store.  The bottles I find problematic not because I don’t have room for them but because a large collection of anything frightens me.  It’s not a perfect science but: when bottles come in, others have to go, and the rest I put away because I don’t want to look at them.  It’s too much.  They weigh on me.  In terms of my physical space, I am all about the illusion of control.  For the record — none of it makes me feel guilty.  If people can collect wine guilt-free, I can collect perfume, yes?  As long as I’m not bankrupting the family, I figure it’s nobody’s business but my own.

I don’t need to know your number, and I hardly expect you to type it in here, unless you want to, in which case, knock yourself out.  I’d be interested in any related comments, including reactions of others who see your collection (some people find mine baffling/horrifying), how you manage it, how it’s evolved over time, and how you feel about The Number.

stoppered bottles:

  • Tara says:

    My bottle count is approximately 500 I would guess… my collecting has seriously slowed down as I’ve reached critical mass and covered just about all the possible categories/combinations of notes… mostly right now I’m buying backup bottles of things that are at risk of reformulation. I have no shame and no guilt about my collection!

  • mimmimmim says:

    I think I’ve got about 17, not counting back-ups or samples. I was trying to keep the number down, and had planned only to buy more bottles when I’d used old ones up, but IFRA 43 has made me rethink that plan, and I’ll be buying/ backing up Carons this year. They’re all ones I’d want full bottles of anyway – it just means spending the money sooner than I’d planned to. (IFRA 43 is also making me hang onto stuff I’m not so keen on and had planned to get rid of; I’d hate to regret losing it later on.)

    My husband gets alternately bothered by the amount of knitting yarn I have and the number of bottles of perfume I own. As yarn is currently holding his attention, the scent store is growing 😀

  • Flora says:

    The Number? Hell, I am just envious of yours – my FB count is at about 40 right now, not counting decants. 200 would be bliss! 😀

    AND – very important – I love the off-topic posts, please don’t stop!

  • mi-cuit says:

    hmmm, i actually got up and counted them. 42 full bottles (kept in their boxes because i’m a purist and a neat freak like that. everything stays in its original packaging). annnnnnnd not bad. 42 is pretty decent. my latest addition was CdG Carnation. it got a comparison to Caron’s vintage Bellodgia. My pleasure about that was disproportionate to the occasion. hehe.

  • dinazad says:

    182. Backup bottles, decants and samples not counted. And I desperately want to cut back to about 80 or so. “The collection” is starting to take over more of my life than I’m comfortable with. Especially since it’s not the only one. Much to the amusement of my friends (who think I’m more than a bit batty. But at least I’m amusing in my battiness) things in my life tend to collect themselves. I never intend to collect anything, but all of a sudden that one pretty milk jug I bought at the fleamarket has live-in friends, visitors, roommates and random acquaintances flocking around me. The guardian angel pictures arrive in flocks (and I don’t have any wall space for them!), droves, herds or whatever it is guardian angels congregate in. Books have taken over my apartment. I swear, when I come home at night there are things lurking in the shadows and hoping to slip inside as soon as I open the door. Then they find a corner for themselves (wedged between the perfume containers and the bookshelves or between the loom and the sewing machine, no doubt) and act as if they’d always been there…..and then they invite their family and friends. Sigh….

  • tammy says:

    My full bottle count is under ten, as I have just started this madness. I have always loved perfume, but the last 15 years, I have not been able to find anything at all I loved…..I have worn Joy since the tender age of 3, and wore Opium, Fendi and Lauren in my 20s, but have been adrift for about 20 years. I had no idea there was anything beyond the department store counters…til one shining day, out of desperation, I googled perfume, and found PP! (And PST, and NST)

    Depsite the fact that I am a collector at heart, I doubt my bottle count will ever get too high, as my skin chemistry turns most things very lemony on me, and I am finding out that I cannot stand, I mean I really cannot abide musk, and most everything I have tried has a very musky drydown. (And I am a total musk amplifier to boot.)

    We aren’t counting samples, right?

    But even if I were to get a huge bottle count, there’d be no shame. I’ve got thousands of books, and a serious rubber stamp habit, not to mention I adore table-top stuff, and I have tons of hats. The paramedics would be well advised to drop crumbs behind them to find their way back out. Perhaps I should leave a map near the front door?

    As far as off-topic posts….please, please do not change! Where else could I possibly get info on perfume, outdoor adventures, recipes, weather updates from Denver, and pictures of Beckham’s balls all in one convenient spot?

  • Molly says:

    For myself, I get a little depressed if my collection gets too big–I want to be able to rotate maybe 15 on a regular basis, and live off my many samples in between. Having alot of samples keeps me from getting bored and feeling that I’m wearing the same perfumes all the time. If I get so many that I feel like I’m never wearing a fragrance more than once, that’s when I get depressed. It makes me feel like I’m not really getting the full enjoyment from the ones I have…
    I know that’s weird. It’s the same as if my wardrobe gets too big–I have all these adorable clothes but only get to wear each piece once in a long while. If I do wear the same things all the time and “ignore” everything else I feel wasteful…
    Yeah, I overthink everything!

  • rappleyea says:

    I’ve been in serious “simplify” mode for the last 10 years or so, so I don’t really “collect” anything, even perfume. I love it and have considered myself a perfumista ever since my uncle sent me a bottle of Je Reviens extrait when I was 12. So probably the lover count would be higher than the bottle count for me (especially since I came of age during the Summer of Love!).

    As for the blog, I concur with EVERYONE on here who says keep it the way it is!!! LUUUURRRVVV it! And honestly, even when you all don’t like a scent, you’ve never been nasty, usually just tongue in cheek funny, and I love that as well.

  • Lynne1962 says:

    I’m still stuck on the paramour count back yonder!! Oh,,,back to bottles. Counted roughly 76,,and since I’m over 50 and just started this collection,,it’s an amazing strain on my wallet all at once.. Just hoping to get enough smells before aging takes care of my ability to do so. (The paramour # just reminded me of the plot of Mama Mia musical I saw recently!!!)

    • March says:

      76 lovers! Teasing, teasing… wow, that is a pretty significant acquisition in a short period of time. Have you been disappointed with your choices? Have you considered samples?

  • Tania says:

    I’ve never counted. But I have six drawers full. In my defence, they aren’t huge drawers. Oh wait, look where I am – I don’t need a defence! 😉 Also, the top of my bedroom bureau is covered again – when I moved my collection to those drawers, I cleared the bureau and swore I’d keep it that way! Oh well….
    So if I had to guess, I’d say I have somewhere in the region of 150 – 200 bottles. And about 100 samples and maybe 30 decants.

    You know what worries me, though? The fire risk. Seriously, that’s a lot of alcohol and oils in one place. It would go up like a freaking bomb!
    Does anyone else worry about that? Or am I crazy? I know, I know, many people have far more alcohol in their bars and cupboards…

    • March says:

      I have never thought about the fire risk. I mean, the USPS does… I never worry about my liquor cabinet going up in flames, either. Or the paint stored in the basement. I save my serious worry for spiders and scalding. 🙂

  • Disteza says:

    Oh, oh my. I’m supposed to COUNT them? Is this a timed assignment? I think I need a trip to the nurse’s office, I’m feeling faint. what’s worse is that I collect art too, and books, and early recordings, and weapons….

    As a rule I make darned sure that I want something before I add it to the giant swirling mass, or, um, collection, so I have a disproportionally high number of vintage and uber niche ‘fumes. Same goes for the other stuff too–I have to research the crap out of it and work myself into acqusition lust before anything gets purchased noawadays.

    • March says:

      Aha! A gen-u-wine collector. I know there are others in the group, they’re holding back. Makeup is obvious, but I know several are oenophiles (did I spell that right?) There’s a lot of sensory overlap going on between smell and taste — tea fanciers on here too.

      • Shelley says:

        🙂 🙂 🙂

        Tea…oooh, wait, there’s a thought; has the storage space needs for perfume passed the requirements for tea? How about office supplies? Hmmm…

        • Disteza says:

          Argh–I didn’t even think about the tea!!! Half of my kitchen cabinet space is devoted SOLELY TO TEA. I’m not even talking about the cups or brewing utensils. My tea fetish is older than my perfume obsession, and tends to be slightly cheaper. As long as I stay away from the extra fancy grade non-exportable oolongs/150-yr old pu-erhs and the pure oudhs I’ll be OK.

  • Pantera Lilly says:

    March, I love your “off posts” whatever they might be, you write beautifully and I always enjoy your trips down memory lane, or the nail polishes and lipsticks, don’t change a thing.

  • gwyneth says:

    Jumping in again (I posted above this, too) 🙂

    PerfumePosse is a blog like no other I have found. If some folks only want to read about Perfume, that’s great, but why should March, Patty, Lee, Nava, need to change “who they are”? This is their blog and most of us stay here because we like that. 🙂

    When I visit a blog, if the topic is of no interest to me, I go away and check back later. Is that so difficult?
    I’m trying to point out that there are ‘different strokes for different folks’ – so let’s not be ungracious enough to criticize the writers of their own blog space.

    Since visiting here is free and a privilege, I’m grateful for it.:)

    • March says:

      Hey, thanks for the compliments! I appreciate it. I put a decent amount of work into this, and playing with the readers is always the greatest.

  • Robin says:

    Not going to count, but pretty sure my collection is still pretty close to 100? Might surprise myself if I counted, but it’s too much of a jumble in there. It’s the 250+ decants that annoy me though…there just isn’t any good way to organize that many small bottles, and they all get out of order no matter what I do.

    No pop ups today!

    • March says:

      No pop ups, yay! R, if you only have 100 bottles, you must have done some culling, yes? (And you’ve been doing online giveaways, which is an excellent way to divest.)

      I have a jewelry hutch or whatever they’re called that is tall and narrow, almost as tall as I am. It has drawers deep enough for decants, which I group by house. That’s worked out okay. I can generally find what I want, I have no idea why. 🙂

  • sweetlife says:

    Well, I am mostly a decant/sample person, and am also big on minis, so I always wriggle out of these conversations with a much smaller number than feels really true to me. If you want to know the truth, I don’t count by bottle, I do it by shelf space. Although, now that I’m considering actually organizing everything so I can see it easily, I think I’m going to have to give up that particular form of denial.

    Sometimes, when I buy a bottle, its because I want to have enough to share. I don’t like that hoarding feeling of — mine all mine, precioussss– but ironically that means I sometimes end up with more.

    And yes, I am totally stocking up on some of my IFRA endangered sentimental favorites. Full bottles where once there were decants. Testers of the things I meant to try one day.

    Does it help that I have a whole other box of things I mean to sell/give away? (Where is that rolling-the-eyes icon?)

    And add my voice to the “it’s your damn blog, and you’re damn good writers, write about what compels you” crowd. My god, people, it’s not like there aren’t other places to read about perfume if that’s the only thing you’re interested in…

    • March says:

      Yes, the nice thing about having larger bottles is it’s easier to share. Sometimes I’m peeling samples off these ridiculously small vials, loaves and fishes.

      There are several of us who’ve reached giveaway status — slogging big cardboard boxes to hookups, saying “take it! Please!”

      And thanks for the kind words about the topics. We aim to please.

  • Meliscents says:

    I think everyone who “collects” eventually starts feeling their saturation level. I finally hit mine. I’ve never counted. I’m afraid the actual number would really hit home my crazy factor. I boxed up some that I don’t wear & put them away so they aren’t cluttering up the space I use for the stuff I wear. I just have to decide now if I’ll try to sell them or give them away. With my luck, about the time they’re gone I’ll feel the need to smell one or the other. I’m actually turning away some I see at estate sales & antique stores unless I really love it & not just grabbing it for the sake of having it. I’d love to eventually narrow down the group to the ones I truly like & will use. It’s funny though, even if I got rid of the clutter, I’m sure my family would still see me as flying my freak flag high & proud. But Hey, it’s a nice smelling flag. 🙂

    • March says:

      The joy of samples is you can whip them out and re-smell them if you need to. Okay, eventually they’ll dry up or disappear, I have no doubt. But if someone blogs on Ta’if, I can go smell it, you know? Without having a bottle of something I’m never going to wear on my dresser. So if you’re worried about getting rid of a lot of bottles, you could start organizing the samples.

  • Elle says:

    First off, let me just say that I love your off topic posts. They’re what make this a “must read” blog for me. I avoid blogs which bore me and PP *never* leaves me bored. I’m also glad you don’t write really negative reviews about most scents (other than those by Guerlain or equally gargantuan outfits). They pain me to read them as I always feel terrible for the small perfumers who put forth their art and probably will read the reviews and can’t help but take it personally. And I’m very glad you’re not doing the jump. I actually do rarely take the time any more to read blogs which make me take that extra step (despite the reality that it doesn’t take that much more time).
    OK, numbers. I’m into serious, serious, serious freak territory by most people’s standards it seems. But, I don’t have much of a Protestant sense of guilt about it. I’m not hurting anyone w/ my perfumes and I do think of it as the equivalent of an art collection and most art collectors I know keep a majority of their works in storage and simply rotate what is out for them to see on a daily basis. I deeply, deeply love perfume and I simply don’t think in terms of having to “use them up” – that’s for household cleansing products. However, I don’t particularly want to have to explain to people around here about my collection, so I keep them all in a storage room near the garage that *nobody* sees and only keep 50 or 60 (higher number in winter) out in my study that I have in top rotation and I keep these on shelves in a closed closet. I also keep them in that storage room so that they’re not exposed to light and are kept in a very cool environment year round, since I am concerned that they remain in good shape – especially all the vintage ones. I have tables and shelves in there and have them all in mid size packing boxes, grouped according to houses, types or eras (and a sadly growing number of “miscellaneous…I have no time to organize these” boxes). Their original boxes are tossed in large storage boxes that take up a fair sized area of our attic. I really am considering just throwing them all out. Have no plans to ever sell these scents, so am wondering why I’ve bothered keeping any boxes at all (many I do simply throw out when I get them). Am currently not focused as much on new scents (most are boring me to tears), but am stockpiling scents from smaller perfumers I’m concerned will go out of business or scents I think will soon be on the chopping block.

    • March says:

      …. and I was wondering if you were going to enter into the fray. Since I know you own … well, whatever you own. A lot. We’ll leave it at that.

      I keep the boxes too. I feel wrong throwing out the boxes. Particularly old boxes, even if they’re cruddy. The stuff I never wear is kept in their original boxes. Boxes of new dime-a-dozen stuff, who cares? Like from Sephora, those boxes are trashed.

      It still annoys me a bit how *weird* people find collecting fragrances. I can think of way weirder things.

      • carter says:

        I keep all boxes, not because I think I’ll sell them at some point, but because I think, “If I were to die, the DH or, if we’re attacked by terrorists again and both of us die together, my “heirs” might want to sell them and God forbid they should not get top dollar because I wasn’t thinking ahead.” I mean, doesn’t everybody?

        • March says:

          Well, yes, exactly. I also think, I have four kids and if I ever have to sell my collection on the street like the Ancient Match Girl, maybe I’d get more simoleans if they were boxed.

          This makes total sense, right?

          • carter says:

            Match Hag. Coming through loud and clear on this frequency, don’t even have to adjust the hat.

  • Natalie says:

    You know what? The number of bottles on my dresser IS exactly the same as the number of men I’ve slept with! Hah!

    • March says:

      Wait … how old are you? (not my business) You’ve kept count?!? I’ve been smiling at this in the back of my mind. I wonder at what point/age people simply lose count. Or am I a freak because I can’t pull together a reasonably accurate list? Gah, shutting up now.

      • Lee says:

        I know exactly how many women I’ve slept with. And yes, there is a number, folks.

        Men – no freaking idea.


        • MarkDavid says:

          I’m 24 and I don’t know the number. Not that its particularly high, I just don’t remember because I never kept track and now don’t have the patience to sit down and figure it out, so I don’t.

          I think we’re now past the point of TMI, Lee.

          • March says:

            Persactly. I lost track somewhere after college. Not due to excess alcohol consumption either. It just seems like less of a big deal.

        • March says:

          Wait … a number larger than zero? Less then ten? Bigger than a breadbox? Sounds like …. ?

          My TMI line is pretty flexible.

      • Natalie says:

        Oh, I’m pushin’ 40, but a couple of years ago this came up in the course of a tipsy conversation, and I actually did sit down and figure it out. The number hasn’t budged much since, unfortunately! Get it while you can, kids, get it while you can… 😉

    • karin says:

      Uh-oh! I see a new post topic developing…

  • Musette says:

    LOL! Missy March, you got the EXACT opposite reaction(s)! Not tell the number? Haw! How could one not?

    Was I the Nosy Parker who asked how many you had? I’m sorry………:-(

    Personally I don’t think bottle acquisition/redaction makes one a perfumista. I think it’s a solid interest in learning about perfume. To that end, a person could have NO bottles and still be a perfumista.

    It’s odd, though, I was just considering this topic last night, as I was dropping all my little samps into their temporary bullet-box homes (still want my slidey-out trays, dammit!). What part of this is a true interest in ‘fumes and what part is hoarding/organizational obsession? One of the things that generous perfumistas have taught me is to LET THINGS GO. They always turn up again, down the line, should I really need/want them. I get so many lovely bits from folks and I haven’t smelled half of them yet! So it’s become way easier to move a samp along, either because I don’t grok it or because somebody else is desperate to sniff somthing I have.

    Oh! For the record, I counted my FBs last night. I have 15 on the dresser, including 3 little-bitty perfumes, and 6 more in the drawer, awaiting the new cabinet. Interestingly, counting them made me want LESS, not more.

    Decants and samps don’t count.

    btw – totally with Galileo’s Daughter – you post whatever you want – all of you! This is a perfume-focused blog but it doesn’t have to be solely about perfume! I enjoy every post; frankly, I often enjoy the off-perfume topic posts more!

    And it’s y’alls blog! Write what you want.

    xoxoxo your nosy >-)

  • Jarvis says:

    I’m up to around 120 as well, but am aware of glaring holes in the collection and have a long list of things that I, um, “need.” If the paramedics were called, they’d have to wade through piles of books that have exceeded the bookshelf capacity, so they might not notice the drawers full of perfume bottles… SO is a bit bemused by all this, but has started to have perfume dreams himself, so I’m assuming he has surrendered to the inevitable as well.

    • March says:

      That is exceedingly restrained, Jarvis. In my case the paramedics would be trying to get to me without killing themselves tripping on the Legos (of course they’d be wearing sensible shoes. Once the Legos moved in we all started wearing house shoes.) Legos clearly spawn even faster than perfume bottles.

  • Nava says:

    Ironically, I have more storage space in my new digs than I did in my house. Back in the late 40s when my former home was built, I’m assuming that closet space wasn’t the priority it has since turned into. That being said, I scaled down my collection before making the move, but it is still somewhere in the vicinity of 100-125 bottles, not including samples/decants. I am not ashamed of that number, but I am very selective about whom I share it with.

    I have an antique wood wardrobe that was part of my parents’ bedroom set where the majority of my bottles are stored, in addition to another piece of furniture that houses the remainder. I like the idea that all my bottles are hidden in plain sight. I don’t display them because I want to preserve the integrity of the juice.

    As far as what other people think – love me, love my collection. If not, well…

    • March says:

      You know what surprises me? That so many of us are in the general ballpark in terms of numbers (general meaning 50ish to 200ish). Of course, maybe the people with 800 bottles are reading this and laughing.

  • MarkDavid says:

    last count was around 270.

    No guilt.

    But…a big long list of things I feel I nee…urrr, need me in their lives.

    I did re-evaluate my collection (I hate to feel like I’m an archivist, but sometimes thats the only way to describe it) and did sell off about 25 bottles in the last 6 months and gave a few bottles away. But recent purchases have cancelled that out so now I’m about back where I started.

    I’m hesitant to get rid of anything because the last time I did that, I ended up buying just about every one of them back again because it turns out, I really did like them after all and as soon as they were out of my grasp, I craved them like some sort of deranged crack addict.

    I am trying to hone my collection a little more. There are “rough edges.” Some things that I could probably do without and not be sad about. And then there are major holes.

    • March says:

      Don’t you find putting them away helps? It’s like that with chocolate for me. As long as I know I have some in the house, we’re good. (Guess who just got busted for eating someone else’s bunny?)

      But I share your fear — I think if I randomly packed 60 bottles in a box and gave them away, I wonder whether that would trigger buying. The fact that this is a possibility really bothers me. It’s not like there’s a perfume shortage going on over here.

  • karin says:

    I’m hovering just below 50, and I’m feeling frustrated at that number. Not guilty mind you, but realize that there are scents I have that I don’t wear and don’t particularly like, that I received as gifts, or grew tired of. I also wasn’t as discerning early on when purchasing bottles. Though I love trying new scents, I’m realizing that I really want to wear and enjoy the bottles I have that I like, but I need to get rid of the ones I don’t like to make room for new ones I do. Hmmm…like Barbara Sher says about traveling light – if you don’t absolutely love something, get rid of it.

    I admit to a recent mindless splurge at TJ Maxx and Marshall’s, though. I was so flabbergasted by the cheap prices, that I bought 5 bottles of stuff I hadn’t even tried before. I returned one, and plan on returning another one, and wish I could return a third, but doubt they’ll take it back cause I threw away the plastic…and therefore the price tag. May just have to give it away, but it was only $14.99, so who cares what happens to it, really? But those “deals” add up, and are really a waste if they’re not something I love.

    So, to summarize my current state of mind – I want to become more discerning when purchasing bottles. Get more into that FBW mentality. Not purchase unsniffed. Not purchase unless I absolutely can’t live without it. I don’t want to be stuck with a bunch of bottles that I don’t really LOVE. Those meh bottles are a weight and burden. I’d much rather give them away to someone who can appreciate them, and I’d much rather proudly say I have 50 bottles that I absolutely adore!!!!

    • March says:

      As we’ve tossed around on here before, decants and samples have their value. They’re a pain to organize (if you’re so inclined) but I think wearing a decant is such a great idea. Of course some people really want that bottle and nothing else will do. And I’m staying out of Marshalls etc., I get tempted by the prices. For what I’ve spent there, $20 – $40 at a time, I could have had a bottle of Les Exclusifs easily, you know? I want an upgrade from quantity to quality.

      • karin says:

        Good for you, staying away from Marshall’s. I just “discovered” the great local Marshall’s cache, and put a dent in it. But now I realize it’s a waste of precious $! Until L’Artisans or Parfums de Nicolai (no chance) start showing up there, I need to stay away as well. Those prices are ridiculously tempting…but DON’T DO IT! Ha ha.

        BTW, I’ve also entered all of my perfumes into Excel – not only the ones I own, but all fragrances I’ve ever owned in my lifetime! I have a column where I check fragrances I currently own.

        Another thing I’ve done – created a Word file of all bottles I have. It’s a table with three columns. Each row is the depth of a page, so I can fit three bottles on each page. Each listing includes the name and maker of the scent, a large photo of the bottle (that I grab from a website), the fragrance category, and the notes. Listing is organized alphabetically by fragrance name. With the photos included, it’s a great way to see everything I own at once, and I’ve even sent the file to friends and family who are curious about the scents I have. One problem with the format, though, whenever I need to add a new fragrance, I have to shift all of the entries downward in order to fit in the new entry. A bit of a pain, but not too bad…

        • karin says:

          Oh…for anyone who cares (yeah, right…ha ha), the page is landscape – thus three bottles on each page, landscape.

  • Carol Sasich says:

    I’m down below 30 now , only what I use regularly on my desk…decants of course don’t count unless they were expensive…LOL…
    don’t you wish we could all be in one room and trade around until we only have what we love ?

  • Olfacta says:

    Hmmm….I just counted 41. Bottles. I have a few stashed away for seasonal use: 45. Of course I’ve only been a blogger for a bit less than a year. Five or six I had before, not counting the little bottles of parfum (gifts). Not counting the forty or so decants (of more than 1 1/2 mls) and the 100+ samples from trades and so forth. And the two fleabay purchases I expect this week: 47.

    I’d say it’s a reasonable number…

  • Melissa says:

    As a friend of mine put it recently, I seem to have acquired approximately 120 bottles in just a few years. The bottles (and decants and samples) quietly multiply with seemingly little effort on my part. It’s just so much nicer to go out shopping with my fragrance friends on the weekends than it is to say, mow the lawn. Yet, my husband appears a little surprised by the large number of neatly boxed up fragrances on the dedicated fragrance shelves in our home office.

    Reactions? My husband doesn’t complain and always tells me that I smell great. My son occasionally tells me I have too many, to which I reply that most 16 year old males do not own 12 niche fragrances (not counting decants and samples). My father, a child of the Great Depression, would find it wasteful and “crazy”, so he is not allowed to know. And my non-fragrance friends find it a little awe-inspiring, if odd.

    • Nava says:

      Your son is a riot, and seems like a really nice kid. I like the fact that he has 12 niche fragrances, rather than a collection of Axe! 😀

  • GalileosDaughter says:

    I can’t believe somebody had the nerve to complain about the “off-topic” posts. If anybody else complains, you can tell them that you’re refunding their free subscription. 🙂 Honestly, it’s your blog, do whatever you want. I’m just happy to have something funny, smart and interesting to read from you, Patty, Lee, Nava– all of you, I don’t want to miss anyone– every day.

    Okay, the number. I’ll admit I begin to feel a little strange when my collection bumps up on 30 bottles, so I pare it down when it gets close. I’m not saying that it’s strange for anyone else to have over that amount, just that for *me*, that’s my *personal* limit. Of course I have tons of samples and decants. Also, backups don’t count–so my three bottles of Rosa Flamenca count as one. 🙂

    • March says:

      I know, I know. I try to put myself in their shoes. There are a whole bunch of topics that I’d have no interest in reading about. So really, we try. Some days, though — it’s either gardening or lipstick, or no post. 🙂

      • March says:

        PS. 30 strikes me as an eminently reasonable number. I’d really like to get mine below 100 but it seems totally impossible.

  • Erin T says:

    83 proper bottles, at latest count, and I don’t feel too bad about it. Like many people here, I imagine, I’ve recently gone into a January 1st, 2010 panic and I was just thinking on the subway this morning that I should give at least ten of the bottles from my early collecting period away to shelters, so I have room for the ten classics I need before they’re defaced. I’d been cutting back for a while, focusing on decants and minis (not included in the count, of course), but it looks like this year may be more expensive then I thought. I keep all my bottles in the linen closet, because, really, how much linen do I need? Also, there are enough high shelves that MJ is currently limited to playing with samples and selected bottles only.

    • March says:

      Nobody needs that much linen. 🙂 And I am eternally grateful that the twins never took much interest in my stuff, although I keep the Little Shelf of Horrors way up high (stoppered flacons of kill-you juice like Poison, Mitsouko, Jicky, vintage Guerlain Jasmin.) One of those hits the floor and we’d have to tear it out.

  • diana says:

    Wow, you guys have amazing collections and shouldn’t feel any shame/guilt!

    I started this interest with a single perfume: Leap! By Body Shop. They disxontinued it and I scooped up the oil. I’ve been looking for (and have susbsequently gotten distracted from) a close-enough replacement.

    In two years, I’ve managed to only amass 27 bottles. Yes, I say only because a tenuous grasp on restraint has kept that number down.

    I count my five 5ml BPAL oils because I turned them into 30ml colognes. Yay Snowdrift Farms!!

    Now that I think about it, should do that with my Leap! Oil?

    • March says:

      Ask the gal up there who’s rolling her own, it sounds like a reasonable idea to me. Your bottle restraint is admirable!

  • DJ says:

    I haven’t commented before, but I wanted to say, in defense of your ‘off topic’ posts, I really enjoy them–I am reading Wabi Sabi because of your blog! and I loved the red lipstick chapters.

    I don’t have many bottles of perfume–maybe 5? I have been searching for new scents for about 3 years and have had very little luck. I just got my order of DSH samples and I am enjoying working my way through them.

    Your posts have encouraged me to sniff many many bottles that I would not have known about or considered. Now I actually plan time to go an smell for the pleasure of experience, even if I get a headache!

    cheers from the UK,

    • March says:

      Hey, this is pretty much the *exact* kind of comment that makes my day, and thanks. I am glad you’re reading the wabi sabi book, and that you enjoyed the lipstick post. And I really hope you enjoy those DSH samps, I think she’s brilliant as you know. (insert peace sign emoticon here)

  • Silvia says:

    My collection is currently occupying every spare flat surface in my bedroom except for the floor and has colonized a couple of drawers. Since that room is a bombshell anyway, no guest is allowed in, so nobody can see the perfumes never mind being able to count them. My husband doesn’t mind the number of bottles, just the mess.

    I feel uncomfortable about divulging “the number”, unless of course I am talking to other like minded people. I don’t want the spending to convey the wrong idea. Most people can empathise with lavish sums on shoes or handbags, fewer with perfume.

    At the initial stages of my addiction I used to log the date of purchase of every FB, but I stopped and my guesstimate is that I have 80-90 bottles (btw, for me a FB has to be at least 30mls), perhaps more. At least when someone asks and I say that I don’t know, I am telling the truth 😉

    • March says:

      That’s the good thing about not counting them, you don’t actually know, do you? Maybe it’s 100, maybe it’s 250. (shrugs)

      Look out, they reproduce in the drawers.

  • Mals86 says:

    Oh, dear… to reveal the ravages of the obsession… I’m not only an amateur, I’m a rank amateur and have only been interested in perfume for six months.

    Because I already made an Excel list of bottles/decants over 15ml for the purpose of keeping track of the cashola (yeah, Accountant Girl Goes Perfume Crazy), that’s my definition of Bottle. The count is 25. If I add in my minis, most of which were purchased online because I live in the sticks far far away from any decent place to sample in person, the count jumps to 52. I’m due to purge several of the minis, however.

    I think my husband’s head might start spinning around, a la The Exorcist, if he started investigating the hatboxes in the closet, so I’m being more discerning about purchases these days. On the other hand, he does own a fair bit of antique farm equipment; the trouble is, he actually uses it. Let me tell you about the time he asked me to drive a truck with no floorboard…

    No, it’s not edifying.

    • March says:

      Hahahahaha!!!! Another spreadsheet freak out of the woodwork! I totally admire that. I know people who keep notes online too. I pretty much know where everything is, but I am not *that* organized. OTOH I have accidentally wound up with extra backups that way. Which anyone who is not a perfume hound would find totally bizarre.

      I am pretty sure The Cheese pretends not to notice Ma Collection. He only complains when my samples start overtaking our shared office (the smell begins to get to him.)

    • Aparatchick says:

      Hey Mals, another Crazy Perfumed Accountant Armed with a Spreadsheet here! And the spreadsheet says ….. 34 full bottles and 79 decants. Which works for me – my rule is sample, then work through a decant, then and only then (Ha! not true, but let’s go with it anyway) buy a full bottle if I adore it.

      My stepdaughter saw the collection a while ago and was stunned and baffled. Not horrified, but then she’s also seen the book collection which is somewhere north of a thousand.

      • Diana says:

        must. fight. urge. to. make. spreadsheet!

        Does keeping a sniff-journal count as OCD?

        • Musette says:

          No. One has to make some sort of notes, else you will end up doing what I all too often do, which is wonder the next morning (or 4 hours later or whatever) what this lovely drydown is on your left wrist and what this godawful drydown is on your right (or vice versa):-).

          I quite like the idea of spreadsheets, even though I am not organized quite like that – it brings out the latent OCD in me. Wheeee!

          btw – for sheer wrangling, nothing is beating those ammo boxes – I don’t think I want them forever (except, maybe, for the vintage stuff) because they are a bit too deep to read the samps but to keep them in place? Yowza!

          And I think I have found my cabinet – but ain’t a-tellin’ until I get it and get everything in there, lest I am wa-ronnng!


  • Wordbird says:

    Oh gawd, I just did a headcount of what’s on my desk right at this moment and came up with 30. Then there is the Big Cupboard and the top of my chest of drawers in the bedroom and (oh dear) the slumbering ones in the storage box, waiting for the summertime, when I’ll put some of my big orientals away.
    Yes, quite a few are little travel sizes or 30ml bottles, since I prefer to buy small these days, but I suspect I’m heading towards the 150+ department. And while my husband is mildly amused at my obsession, no-one else has really seen it in all its glory.

    “On the other hand, it’s not antique farm machinery.” I really like that line, Masha! I hope you don’t mind if I quote you.

    • March says:

      They are SO LUCKY it’s not antique farm machinery, that is all I’ve got to say. Go, Masha!

      Your husband and your collection sound quite reasonable.

  • Frenchie says:

    Aaaaaaah, The Number 🙂
    March, I am really impressed with the size of your collection. It seems just right and I have an impression that you carefully choose your bottles, rather than hoard everything like so many collectors.

    After a purge I’m down to 30 (about 5 are backups). Not a big collection but I’m trying to make it even smaller and keep only the ones I love and actually wear. A big collection feels like a burden so I have to be in control of this. (control freaqk, mois?)
    I know that eventually I will end up with a bigger collection- it is difficult to keep an interest in this hobby and not acquire new things.

    I have only one friend with an interest in perfume so we can have long chats about it. Others are amused because they believe in having a signature scent or simply wearing one perfume at a time.

    • March says:

      That’s very funny — we sound like we have similar control issues. I grew up in a very messy house with packrats (borderline hoarders) and thus avoid these situations in my life. Perfume is the only thing I have collected, and I’d like to pare it down.

    • Frenchie says:

      Oh, forgot to say that I love the off-topic posts! Esp the makeup stuff 🙂

  • Ines says:

    This has just made me feel great. I was thinking recently that I have at least 4 times more bottles than anyone else I know, but now I see I’m nowhere near havig that much. 🙂 I’m just a beginner (total) – I got a bit scared when I counted more than 30 at the top of my head – which it seems now is nothing. Yeey! I’m free not to feel guilty. 🙂

    • March says:

      You have plenty of distance to go before you feel bad. But as you can see from the other comments, be careful because they start reproducing themselves.

  • Lee says:

    I’ve shrunk from over a hundred to somewhere between 60 and 70. For me, it was an addiction for a while that started to become unhealthy – a need for a bottle simply because I liked it as a decant, and never used up the decant, isn’t an authentic need. It was a craving I could never fulfill and about as healthy as a heavy sugar rush.

    Every once in a while, there’s a puritan in me who wants to get out. And I guess it helps/hinders that Matt hates spending!

    • Lee says:

      Oh, and I meant to say I’m probably the one who’s most guilty about being off topic. We’re a blog that likes to say nice things, even if we say em in silly ways. I don’t want to be nasty, or even worse, have only mediocre things to say…

      I’ll try to be more on-topic for a few posts, at least.

      • Musette says:


        Write about what you want. I’d rather read a passionate post about Gracie or your garden than a bof post about the latest ‘eh’ scent.

        all worship and adoration, baby!


      • gwyneth says:

        Greetings –
        This is going to be a “polite” response. I am sitting very primly and properly as I type….

        PLEASE don’t change anything about PerfumePosse!! (She screams, politely)

        I read this blog daily because I LIKE it – the perfume stuff, the angsty stuff, the nail polish stuff, the make-up, the wonderful evocative photos you choose (whoa…D. Beckham!) All these things make PerfumePosse what it IS. My polite response to others who, perchance, only wish to read about perfume — well, then, please only read the writings that pertain to perfume. Simple? Yes. But then the rest of us can enjoy Lee’s beautiful writings about Winter, Gardening, Dogs, etc…….and Patty’s journey to hiking Nirvana, and March’s search for the perfect sunblock. I am deeply interested in these topics. 🙂

        • carter says:

          You go girl.

        • Mals86 says:

          (falling off chair) I’m really, really, truly glad that other people read the makeup reviews and love every single thing about PP. No, really! Because it was ME (March was being nice about keeping my comment sort of anonymous, although if you read all the comments about “should we jump” the other day, you might have recognized it) putting my comment in that I like the family stories, the gardening stuff, the Meh reviews, the Oscar the Grouch reviews, the dogs, the hiking, the Zen Wabi Sabi stuff, and everything else… except the makeup. Because, heathen that I am, I Am Not Interested In Makeup. I use it, but it bores me.

          Okay, batten down the hatches: IT WAS NOT A COMPLAINT! It was a comment, a tiny little by-the-way while-I’m-talking-about-the-format I’ll-also-say “I don’t find the makeup stuff very interesting, although I may be alone” comment, and I love the Posse and I’m not leaving even if I have appalled all of the rest of you, so there!

          Jeez, you people… of COURSE I’ll just not bother reading it the days when there are makeup reviews, and be all over it on the days when there’s anything else.

          • Musette says:

            Oh, hush. You’re okay by me – you just don’t want to read about makeup. And I suspect we’re all okay with that, too!

            We’ll see you on the perfume days!!!


          • Mals86 says:

            Oh, good, I’m not getting kicked out! Waft a little of that Bal a Versailles of yours over here, would ya, M? Or whatever you’re wearing today…

          • March says:

            Eeeek!!! Okay, let me further disclose that I combined your comment with the occasional Contact Us (or private) email we get saying, how about staying on topic? Love those perfume reviews!! I mean, seriously, in a really nice way.

            So I was just trying to put it out there, the WHY. Ask Patty, I am the original foot-in-mouth over-explainer. On the days people tune in and get a blush post, oh well, but I really do appreciate the readership and have not forgotten the name/focus of the blog. (Insert peace and rose emoticons here.) Hugs.

          • Musette says:


            that’s @+}+;+-

            (hope I got it right!) peace? you’re on your own, bay-bee


          • carter says:

            Plus, you were tres polite. I like the make up chat, but will defend to the death your right to say that you don’t 😉

          • Lee says:

            Well, the make-up does little for me too mals, unless I’m having a New Romantic day, and one of those hasn’t happened in the past 27 years, but hey, who knows…

            Love ya!

      • March says:

        Wait … I forget … we have a topic?

    • March says:

      We talked about that. I have this … this bottle curse. Vintage stuff is fine. But I swear, almost the *second* I buy a bottle of something, that’s the end of my interest. It really takes the thrill off the buying.

      • Musette says:

        OMG! I so feel your paiiiiin – I get that, too.

        I also got Something Else:

        You remember the Drama Nuui Drama(of course you do, bless you). Well, I got it, all 100 ml, and I still love it (it is lovely and stays largely laser-y on me – the musk only ooks me out waaay later, like right before it disappears altogether – small price to pay).

        But you also remember that lungal thing I got awhile back? – well, Drama Nuui’s jasmine is currently scraping the heck out of my lungs. No sprayey for you, Missy!

        I find it ironic, myself. when I’m not throwing a fit about it.


  • Louise says:

    Being a modest soul, I’d rather divulge the number of past lovers than my number of perfume bottles… 😉

    But if forced, I suppose it’s over 200, not counting decants, but including the large box of Not Rights in my closet. I’ve slowed way down on buying, not so much out of budget consciousness as lack of interest (I have most vintages I want and little new interests me); also lack of space, since my collection is overflowing my lovely perfume chest of drawers. The most irritating part of a largish collection for me is not being able to find that perfect something when rushing out the door in the morning.

    I am enjoying giving and swapping away bottles now; spring cleaning time has arrived!

    • March says:

      Huh. That is actually way lower than I’d guessed (your bottles, not your lovers.) It’s definitely time to purge. I think you’ll be getting a couple things back as well 🙂

    • carter says:

      Hi sweetie, come over here and sit next to moi.

  • Joe says:

    Thanks for posting this, because you forced me to make a count: I’m just shy of 50, and I’m not really counting minis or those 10ml travel spray thingies. Yeah, I’m an amateur. I do wonder what people might think, but hey, the few who know are good friends, and the others… who really cares. I can’t see ever having more than 100 though. Seriously. THEN I’d be embarrassed if the paramedics ever had to come or something.

    It’s actually nice to know the rough number. My decants are breeding, though, and I see myself on a long-term decant and mini-bottle jag for awhile. Unless I can get it for a steal at the evil place, there are very few 100ml I expect wanting or needing.

    Just a few weeks ago I typed all my bottles (incl. minis) into a spreadsheet, mainly so I could share it with some swapper friends. That came in handy too.

    Your attitude is exactly the right one, though: Ain’t nobody’s business if we do…

    • March says:

      Seriously, your fragrance collection would embarrass you? Does it seem that weird for a guy? (I guess so, if folks roll their eyes at me.) If it were my husband, I wonder if it would annoy me? You know, probably. He has wine, but it’s in the cellar, I don’t have to look at it. Plus people would be suspicious about his man-card, right?

      The SPREADSHEET. Giggling. Now that’s the ultimate perfume geek thing IMO. Loading ’em into the old spreadsheet. You’ve turned pro.

      • carter says:

        Well, if it makes Joe feel any better about the spreadsheet, I have made a swatch book for my nail polishes, which are threatening to take over my bedroom. If I had fewer polishes, I could probably squeeze in another 10 bottles of frag. With boxes.

        • Joe says:

          Yeah, and that’s one thing I’m glad is NOT taking up space. No nailpolish, no lippies, no powder, no pencils. And my hair is all buzzed off, so not even any shampoo, conditioner, gels, pomades. No nothing! Just MORE ROOM FOR PERFUME! Bwahahaha.

          And seriously though: embarrassed? Well, just a little, like I said, if a bunch of paramedics came to haul me away to the Perfume Asylum or I had to let the neighbor in to borrow a cup of sugar or something.

          • March says:

            Well, and think of all the money you’re saving on all that product and hairstyling. You could buy yourself a bottle of Jules to celebrate. In fact, if you don’t own one, you might want to put it on your list. xox your favorite enabler

          • Joe says:

            Jules? Dior? Is that something from someone other guy’s wishlist? If I’m being enabled with all the money I’m saving, you need to tell me to go for the Poivre 23 or something from Profumum, or maybe “just” 100ml of some FM. Or HEY, one of those MDCI things.

  • carmencanada says:

    Oh dear. The Number. I’ve stopped counting at 200, but I’ve slowed down a tiny tad, so it can’t be much over 250. Not counting decants, of course: I’ve been getting more and more of those from the niche brands who send me their stuff to (hopefully) review.
    About half of this is vintage, with a few real rarities I keep for reference purposes.
    Before the IFRA thing really hit home, I was starting to consider selling off decants of lots of my stuff, but for the moment I’m feeling pack-rat-ish. Even the relatively modern things look threatened — how do I know what’s actually in them and might be removed?

    As for other people’s reactions, well, about half the collection is in closets and not so many people actually make it as far as my bedroom where the other half is, so I haven’t been getting any comments!

    • March says:

      Yes, it’s not as though they’re all over the dining room table. The people who are funniest are the friends of my teenage daughters. They think it is *so cool* that here’s a mom who has endless scads of not only perfume, but nail polish!!! My daughters who actually have to live with me (“smell this! what do you think of THAT?”) are a little less enamored.

    • Olfacta says:

      I’m the same way since the IFRA thing. I’ve taken most of my vintage treasures off my swaplist. A shame.

  • carter says:

    I mentioned the fact that I live in a closet in NYC in the recent post about storage, and that more than anything dictates my bottle count. I cannot possibly hang onto frags that I don’t absolutely adore except in sample form, so I don’t buy full bottles of anything until I’m pretty darn sure that it is something I will wear to pieces and isn’t just a passing fancy. When I’m wrong about that, out it goes.

    So I reckon that I have maybe 30 full-sized bottles, plus another 10 travel spray sized bottles (love the FM ones), and then another 30 back-up bottles of the vintage, hard-to-find things that I must have for the rest of my life plus any other scents I love that are not readily available here in the USA (Serge Lutens, I’m talking to you). I have a friend who lives in Ireland who facilitates my Europe-only purchases, but she lives in a remote farmhouse on the far west coast and the thought of her having to schlep all the way into her tiny village just to post things for me keeps my greed and paranoia in check.

    • March says:

      I like that you have defined space and it forces you to cull. I didn’t get forced until I couldn’t take the mental pressure. Also they were reproducing like tribbles in the guest room, to the point that it was getting hard for the guests. 🙂

      At this point I’ll probably be focusing more of my buying on vintage stuff. And now I pretty much have to work through a decant before I buy a bottle, which has slowed things down nicely.

      • carter says:

        That’s precisely what I do. Emphasis on the unattainable, decants for newer things in the “under serious consideration” category, and full bottles of the stuff I absolutely know I will wear for awhile. But if I had more space, all bets would be off.

      • carter says:

        And of course all of this Eloise logic is coming from a woman who has built an altar for a pair of shoes.

        • Musette says:

          But those are Very Special Shoes. Worthy of an altar. Like if you had Dorothy’s Ruby Slippers….or Elvis’s Blue Suedes…

          like that..


  • Masha says:

    As my mother says, “At least she doesn’t collect antique farm equipment.”
    I’m down to 35 bottles, I’ve sold off a lot and just kept the real collectibles, the ones that are now “banned by IFRA” and couldn’t be sold today. Most of the hundreds of new ‘fumes I’ve sniffed in the last 2 years have been fleeting and quite dull, they all pretty much smell the same and very, very safe. Who needs bottles of that?
    I make my own now in my lab, and I’m having fun with the weird, the skanky, and the sublime. I can use whatever naturals I want, in myriad freaky combinations. Some actually smell good, too. I’d rather spend the $100 on really excellent jasmine or rose absolute than on a bottle of “Meh”. And it’s easy to put 2 or 3 essences that smell good in some perfumer’s alcohol, and use that. Most of my recipes average around 25 ingredients now, but simple is lovely, and better than most of the new mainstream frags around. Like Luca Turin says, you could just add some hay absolute to perfumer’s alcohol (or frankincense, etc.) and you’ve got something lovely.

    • bryan says:

      If you don’t mind me asking, where does one buy perfumer’s grade alcohol. I have been collecting perfume for 15 years or so but haven’t had the nerve until now to try and at least dilute some tuberose oil and wear it alone. Any guidance would be so appreciated.

      • Masha says:

        In the States, Snowdrift Farms sells several kinds. They also just started selling the silicone-based perfume bases, for people who don’t want alcohol in their perfumes. In Europe, apothecaries sell it as “weingeist”, or alcohol for making herbal tinctures (either 70% or 90% alcohol). Good luck and have fun!

      • Linda says:

        If you’re only planning to wear it yourself and not to sell it, by all means see if your local liquor store or BevMo sells the strong Everclear. It works great, smells neutrally pleasant itself, and is cheaper. And hey, you can make Jello shots with the leftovers. 😉 If you are making to sell, you must use specially denatured alcohol — please email me if you need help, I’ll be happy to help. Literaryequivalent at yahoo dot com is my handle.

    • March says:

      Yes, the farm equipment! It put me in mind of a funny show I saw recently where someone wound up with a printing press and couldn’t figure out what to do with it…

      That could be a whole other topic. I have, for whatever reason, zero interest in trying to make my own fragrance, other than the occasional layering jaunts. I wonder how many perfume nuts on here buy raw materials and do their own blending? My analogy: I like shoes but I don’t want to *make* shoes.

      • Olfacta says:

        I have the Perfumers Apprentice notes kit, and have made a few DIY’s but, like most commercial scents, they’re ephemeral; lately I’ve been experimenting with using essential oils with the alcohol-based “notes.” I may use unscented skin oil in that way too. And (don’t read if you’re a purist) adding some notes to existing perfumes, usually drug or dept. store scents that could use a little help IMO (not the niche ones though.) It’s the usual quandry: how does one “fix” it so it lasts? But it’s fun to do and, now that I have alphabetized them so I can actually find the ones I’m looking for, not as frustrating as it was (as in, damn it, where is that linalool?)

        • Meliscents says:

          Thank goodness someone admits to “fixing” commercial fragrances.
          I’ve been at that for a while. I don’t mess with rare, vintage, or expensive ones but the ones, like you, on the drugstore end. Although that being said, I have a mini of Gucci bu Gucci that I added a drop of Oakmoss absolute (to make up for what was missing) & a drop of Patchouli and WOW! That did it.

  • Annelie says:

    Friends and relatives that see my perfume collection are about stunned, there isn´t anyone around me with a perfume interest (more than having a bottle or two for parties and special occations).

    But when dealing with perfumistas my collection is very modest, and consists of about 60 bottles, or about 70 if I count my husbands too. Wich I do, since I pretty much force them on him. 🙂

    But I do wonder, a bottle of 10-15 ml, called purse spray or travel size are they to be counted as big bottles or…?

    Well, yes… what else can I say than keep them coming. 😉

    • March says:

      Nope, like another commenter down there, I don’t count purse sprays or pretty much anything below 30ml. Well, that’s not entirely true, I count parfum… okay, clearly there is no logic to my math, let’s be honest. 🙂

      I have a few friends who think it’s a bit strange and (since I don’t yammer about it) some are totally stunned to find out I have this hobby, or the blog. But I feel like it would be boring people with my stamp collection. OTOH several friends lurk on here and have come sniffing with me who weren’t really that “into” perfume, and/or have joined our informal DC group, which is a blast for me.