After reading all your amazing stories here, I’ve reached the realisation that I’m no longer a proper perfume addict. What in some ways might induce melancholia, also brings relief: I no longer worry too much about trying everything, EVERYTHING, EVERYTHING, godammit, and can count on one hand (I think) the number of new releases I’ve sniffed this year. At least, that’s what my ‘convince yourself it’s true’ mind tells me.
Hell, I’ve even gone a couple of weeks without wearing perfume. Partly that’s the fault of oinking swine flu, which came and went with two days of fever, aches and soul-weariness, followed by a tail of coughing, headaches and wheezing. I was lucky: one of the kids next door followed it up with croup and pneumonia. He’s fine now though (very mild pneumonia – when I saw him last, he’d just spent the night in hospital and was running around imagining he was a doctor, coughing that deep pneumonic cough as he attempted resusciation -or something – on a teddy in the hallway). Back on topic, please.
But also, the not-wearing-perfume thing is part of my usual summer malaise where my obsession slots get taken up with my other interests (growing stuff and home improvement, seeing as you asked. What I can’t paint, wallpaper, or plant I have no interest in. And armchairs, fabrics and blankets currently make me delirious in an entirely non-flu like way).
However, in spite of all this, I still have a list of things to sniff on a post-it on the desktop of my laptop, which I’m currently typing on in my sitting room on the oak table with Queen Anne legs on the wool carpet which we’re planning to change after I’ve painted the ceilings down to the picture rail an off-white, the walls a tertiary green and wallpapered the alcoves on either side of the chimney. Then I’ll move onto the study – French grays, sofabed cunningly concealed as an old fashioned couch, oak ladder desk, winged French armchairs, rug. See, I’m off again.
So the list. Here it is.
Fourreau Noir – even though it has the dreaded dihydromyrcenol (think nasty modern men’s stuff – for me, the throat-choker chemical) according to the ever-sagacious Carmencanada of Grain de Musc, old Serge remains a must-test for me, even though I detested Serge Noire and continue to vacillate over El Attarine. Though sheaths are new, I’m very bored of Noir in perfumes. Thrill me, Sergy, please.
Fille en Aiguilles – a sample will shortly be winging its way to me. Now this sounds lovely, from what I’ve read elsewhere (Happily, Hellenic Helg raved over at Perfume Shrine). Yes please.
Wazamba – I wonder, I wonder. Hilarious name. We had a drink in the UK in the 80s called Um Bongo, and this perfume name reminds me of the same facile and colonialist attempt to speak for all of Africa in one word, and get it wrong enough to be very bad indeed. But, at the same time, it does sound funny. And the ingredients – incense, fir, cypress (and apple. wtf?) – pique my interest.
CDG Laurel – I know nothing about this other than it makes me think of cooking and Caesar.
L’Artisan for Scent Bar/Lucky Scent and Havane Vanille – what’s happened to the Scent Bar release by Bertrand Duchaufour that’s supposed to smell of the LA hills? Wasn’t it due for release in October last year? Who’s fallen asleep at the wheel? And why didn’t Liberty send me a sample of Havane Vanille when all I’ve heard from Sniffa folk is ‘Oh it’s so lovely’, ‘Gosh, darn it, it’s the best vanilla ever’, ‘Streuth (an Australian, I imagine), it’s a beaut’, ‘Strikealight, sugarplum, it’s got me multi-orgasmic’. And I’ve bought from Liberty for years too. Snarl, snarl, and whimper.
The Different Company Oriental Lounge – another quiet one, but it’s Celine Ellena and seeing as I swear by her Sel de Vetiver, admire her Sublime Bal(l)kiss(ing), and am captivated by her jasmine at night, this ‘un should also be good, even if that name is a little too 90s chillout for my tastes.
Fahrenheit Absolute – I wore the original as though my existence depended on it back when I though secondhand suits with desert boots and braces was the best look evah!, and therefore this ‘need-to-test’ combines the best bits of nostalgia (saudade if you want to get Portuguese or pretentious about it) with the driving need of the reformed sniffaholic.
Oh, and a late addition. Patricia de Nicolai is releasing Patchouli Homme in September. O.M.Freakin’.G. That might just be a blind buy. Read about it here. And let’s end with a few of that wonderful woman’s words:
‘I´m a bit fed up with the whole “100%-natural” thing. If some people want to go back to Marie-Antoinette´s perfumery, fine, it´s up to them. But as far as I´m concerned, I don´t believe in 100%-natural haute perfumery. We absolutely must need to change the way we look at synthetic molecules; journalists need to be brave enough to talk about them, to break the taboo. Way back in 1952, Ernest Beaux said, “Perfumery´s future lies in chemistry”…’
So, what’s on your list.? Share one, share all.
The image is of a random list found on the internet. I quite enjoy trying to make sense of it.