Cuirs & a draw!

All Autumn in a Glove

All Autumn in a Glove


This is going to be one of those rambling posts.  GASP!!  The HELLZ you say, Musette!!!  YOU?  Rambling?

Well bite me on my Big, Fat Butt!    I just got back from Brigadoon – there are a couple of little towns in Central IL that are oddly placed – they’re not really far away from larger metro areas (Peoria) but because of their placement, they might as well be on Jupiter.  They are 20 miles from Somewhere Else but it takes almost an hour to get to the next place.   No cell signal and the one bar in town that boasts Wireless….it’s never open!

And it’s dark as the inside of a dog.

And it’s cold.

So I’m turning to a lot of leathers – this is the perfect time of year to bust out the leather roses, the leather ambers (those are always tricky for me) the sueded ones, the one that purr….the ones that bite (but just a little)…

My All-Time Favorite:   Chanel Cuir de Russie parfum is why I fell in love with leather scents.  It’s that coffee-colored Bombay Paris bag, fresh out of the sleeper.   A pair of gorgeous brown leather gloves.  I admit to not liking the ect/Exclusif in the least- it’s a nice smell and all….but it lacks that rounded richness that makes me feel all smoochy and cashmere-ylike  – I have a car.  And a driver.  And a housekeeper.  And I like it.  The parfum is the epitome of subdued glamour.  When I wear it, I feel like I’m wearing cashmere and carrying one of my many Bombays, on my way to fly private – even when I am wearing fleece and going to gather the eggs our of the nesting boxes.

Daim Blonde.  So lovely.  It toppled Cuir de Lancome from the Pretty Leather pedestal awhile ago.  The apricot in CdL is really pretty – but it actually gets too oily-round (that’s how I describe that place where it becomes all about the sweet).  Daim Blonde has a bit of lemon in it, similar to Bandit.  I love Bandit, in theory.  In reality it gives me a migraine, which breaks my heart.  So.  No Bandit for meeee!

Diorling.  Vintage.  There’s a pair of stiletto-heeled boots.  And an actual stiletto.

Parfum d’Empire Cuir Ottoman.  My Goldilocks leather.   I dunno what it is about this scent but I’ve got a very short window in which I can wear it.  Too hot and it makes me want to gnaw my arm off.  Too cold and I am teetering on the edge of nausea all day long.  Right now, in the mid-50s, with pretensions of getting colder…it’s Just Right.

There are several floral leathers but my all-time BFFFE is Rosine’s Secrets.  The body cream is the stuff of fantasy – slick this on right out of a hot shower and you can smell the leather bloom through the rose.  Later, the rose takes center stage but if you sort of Zen out while you are applying the cream you can take that olfactory memory with you through the rest of the day.  I always think I can wear this in Summer.  And I am always wrong.  This is an Autumn scent, 100%.  YMMV.

My Brigadoon Leather:  Tommi Sooni Tarantella.   I remember getting my sample of Tarantella.  I was driving through the cornfields, trying to rip open the package, etc…..(it was early on and I was rabid)……I got it open, applied it (yes, whilst driving.  Rabid)….and about 5 minutes later this gorgeous, pronounced, leather note bloomed on my wrist!  I fell madly in love.  Truly, deeply.  Alas, I couldn’t replicate that first LEATHER! bloom.  3 different samples and a full bottle later, I’ve given up – I still love the perfume and every now and again I will catch a whiff of what gobsmacked me that first time…but, like Brigadoon rising from the mist, I fear I am destined to never smell it rising from my wrist again.  Sigh.


Are you wearing leathers now?  What are your favorites?  Or do you hate leather’s guuuuuuts.  For me, the height of leather luxury is always brown – I think it’s because I feel it’s really difficult to create a rich brown leather than will hold its color and suppleness.  Or else I just like brown.  Who knows?


Tell me what you’re wearing for the Autumn Transition and I’ll pick a winnah for a sampling from the Messy Armoire.

  • Eloquaint says:

    I loved Bandit first, Cuir de Russie next, and now I favor Histories de Parfums 1740: Marquis de Sade. Leather is my favorite note.

  • I’m starting to really get into leather. I love Lonestar Memories, Daim Blond and Cuir Ottoman and am dying to try more. I’ve sniffed the wax samples of Boxeuses and Cuir Mauresque and liked both of those too.

  • Laurels says:

    Leather tends to go sour on me, but I’ve found a few that work for me. L’Artisan Traversee du Bosphore and Mauboissin Histoire d’Eau are the ones I’ve been wearing lately. Bottega Veneta Eau Legère and Ann Gerard Cuir de Nacre are also nice, but I haven’t yet shelled out for a bottle of either. What I’ve worn most lately is actually Agent Provocateur L’Agent, and I’ve had a hankering for Queen Latifah Queen, but it’s been just a little too warm in the afternoons.

  • Elena says:

    I have a wee decant of CdR parfum, and my god, it just kills me how perfect it is. I also love love love Ann Gerard Cuir de Nacre for something a little easier to wear out, or to work. One of my new favorites! I love all of your other examples, too, so I really think you must try the Ann Gerard if you haven’t already.

  • TheLunarWhale says:

    I’m wearing Bois de Paradis by Parfums Delrae. Perfect warm, spicy-sweet amber for fall.

  • Elia says:

    Well I pulled out Aoud Cuir d’Arabie lately, so I guess that’s the leather I’m wearing lately 🙂

  • Kandice says:

    As a rule I’m just not that fond of smelling like leather myself. The smell of real leather is fine, but I don’t want to wear it as a perfume. Maybe I just haven’t found the right one yet. I’ve tried a few, the nicest being Ann Gerard’s Cuir De Nacre. But even that I didn’t like wearing for more than an hour or two. Oh well, can’t love everything 🙂

  • Nemo says:

    Lonestar Memories and Tuscan Leather are two of my favorites, but I really want to try more (including Bandit)!

  • Sapphire says:

    Leather fragrances have to be pretty soft for me to like them, so my favorites are Cuir Beluga and Traversee du Bosphore, but oddly enough, I do really like Boxeuses and Cuir Mauresque. Transitioning to fall means a lot of Diptyque Eau Duelle, some Black Cashmere, and almost anything Guerlain.

  • I like leather a lot in the fall. The only ones I have trouble with are the “manly” leathers, like Derby or Knize Ten, but even those I could rock on occasion. Favorites are Cuir de Lancome, SL Boxeuses, Chergui (probably really more a tobacco scent, but I get some birch tar in there), and Bottega Veneta, which I like to think of as the blonde genteel sister to Boxeuses motorcycle-riding badass. I also like Cuir Ottoman and Daim Blonde, though I haven’t smelled DB in a while. I need to get some more of it.

    I’ve never tried Bandit or Cuir de Russie. I smelled Cuir Mauresque once, and while the top was a little birch-tarrier than I normally like, it was really nice after that opening phase phase passed.

  • Jackie b says:

    And my husband just walked in to the kitchen wearing Knize Ten, he smells Gorgeous!

  • Jackie b says:

    I now realise that I have a LOT of leathers in my collection! I don’t care what season it is, I can always find a time to wear them, especially the ones that lean floral like Bottega Veneta. The body cream is gorgeous too, even on its own. Time for me to try Monegal now, and Mona di Orio Cuir…and…and…

  • wefadetogray says:

    Too new to leathers to pretend I know what I am talking about, but I do like in the winter my Daim Blonde. I did not like Cuir de Lancome or any of the Monegal take on it but that’s all I have tried really. The TF version disgusted me because of the raspberry plastic burning fire mess it created on my skin. Transitioning into winter I mix: today mix is Feminite du Bois and Bois de Violette. sheer love!

  • ojaddicte says:

    After reading some of the replies, I have learned that I am a full-on leather ‘ho. Trussardi in the faux croc bottle, Bottega Veneta, Cuir de Lancôme, Bandit, Jolie Madame, Bulgari Black, and Traversée au Bosphore are all in rotation right now… fortunately they all work on me. I’m intigued by Daim Blonde, Cuir de Russie, and Monegal’s Mon Cuir.

  • I’m wearing philosykos as we transition to the cooler weather. The sweet milky note is enough to make me smile and think of summer, but the warmth is perfect for fall. Never tried a leather yet though – can’t wait!

  • Tena says:

    I am an unabashed leather harlot !! I have the Chanel cuir parfum and some of the Exclusives EDT, modern Bandit, Jolie and Cabochard, a wonderful bottle of Lancôme’s Cuir and partials of Vintage Jolie ( don’t touch it – I will fight for that one) , Bulgari Black and Cuir Ottoman. Apparently, I will need to try the Bottega Veneta……

  • stina says:

    Like mals, I can never tell with leathers – sometimes they work (Cuir de Russie extrait) and sometimes I flee screaming (Tuscan Leather and Cuir de Lancôme go nauseatingly sweet on me).

    I ran across a set of vintage minis on eBay a while ago, and when I unpacked the box there was a micro-mini of vintage Bandit hiding behind the larger bottles. It had only a drop or two of juice left, which had gone all sticky and crusty. I pried the lid off (not expecting much), took a sniff, and almost fainted at the sheer gorgeousness of it.

    The sharp top notes were gone; what was left was like a deglazed sauce – a deep, rich, dark, super-intense version of what the original juice must have been. Sort of a Platonic ideal of Leather. There isn’t enough left to dab even a little on skin, so I’m keeping it for the sheer pleasure of opening it every once in a while and inhaling deeply!

  • Audrey says:

    I love Lonestar memories by Andy Tauer. Thank you for the draw!

  • Gwenyth says:

    Leathers. Yum — perfect for wearing in cool/cold weather.

    Trussardi by Trussardi (in the faux white croc leather bottle) – sophisticated leather. Recently purchased a vintage 25ml bottle.
    Bottega Veneta (original) – fell in love w/this when I smelled it wafting beautifully on our guide during a trip to Spain
    Cuir de Lancome – the first leather perfume I ever smelled. Still love it.
    Traverse du Bosphore – wears like a lovely suede on my skin

    Those are the ones I own. Clearly I need to sniff (and purchase) some additional scents.

  • Janice says:

    I like Cuir Fetiche, which I think is rather tame in spite of its name, and Naomi Goodsir’s Cuir Velours. I have a little bit of Cuir de Russie parfum but I have to be feeling brave enough to wear it.

  • malsnano86 says:

    I’m pretty much all over the place with leathers – I never know whether I’m going to like them or hate them. Occasionally I’m indifferent, but usually I’ve got a definite opinion.
    I Cannot Do Cuir de Russie. (Yes, I’ve tried the parfum. Yes, I’ve tried the vintage. Yes, I’ve tried the vintage parfum. I had ONE trial where it didn’t smell like our cattle working pens, but instead smelled like the Best Purse Ever. It only happened once. I’m still bitter. Can you tell?)
    Bandit ice picked me. Recently tried Cuir d’Ange, and it was unbelievably fecal on my skin, just beyond awful. Bottega Veneta has so much patchouli in it that I struggle. I’m not sure what the deal was with Tabac Blond, but it was just not-good. Daim Blond I really don’t even remember – think I have half a sample lying around somewhere and maybe I should retest.
    Love Cuir de Lancome, and Jolie Madame in parfum, and if I could afford a whole bottle of Tuscan Leather I’d buy it. Cuir Ottoman was really nice, though more of an amber fragrance to my nose. Cuir Cannage is good too, somewhere along the lines of Cuir de Lancome (though to be honest I prefer the Lancome). ADORE Memoir, but to me that one is a whole smorgasbord of good stuff that only includes leather, rather than “a leather scent.”
    Somewhere I might have a sample of Cuir de Nacre, and should probably try Cuir Beluga – from what I hear, I am likely to fall for the fluffy drydown. SIgh. DNEM, btw, I’m up to my eyeballs in untried samples… Mwah.

  • Irina says:

    Daim Blond and the original Bottega Veneta- and latter in the cold, Cuir Ottoman
    thanks for the draw

  • Julie L says:

    OK, you’ve all convinced me; I MUST try Daim Blond, Tabac Blond, as well as the SSS incense fragrances sometime this fall….just when I was trying to stay away from falling in love again!. And yes, Tuscan Leather s well as White Suede (both Tom Ford) cover some pretty “awesome bases”. My samples are almost all gone though!

  • I’ve just met and fallen in love with Tabac Blond and it’s convinced me that I am not–despite my initial tastes–a flowers and vanilla girl, but a smoke, wood and leather girl. Won’t my parents be pleased. From now on, I will do my best to embody Luca Turin’s description of Tabac Blond: ‘dykey and angular and dark and totally unpresentable’.

  • Rincoglionita says:

    I am just discovering leathers, and I want to try every single one mentioned in this thread. My current favorite is Bottega Veneta. I am also happily tucking into SSS’s Winter Woods and Incense Pure. Deeelightful!

  • Caroline says:

    Have only tried CdR in the Exclusifs edt version, and wasn’t bowled over–need to sample the extrait. I do like the Ann Gerard mentioned above, and am also curious to try Desarmant. I know a defintive leather is out there somewhere!

  • AnnieA says:

    CdL and Tuscan Leather and Rien cover all bases for leather.

  • Deva says:

    I love PdE Cuir Ottoman, he’s “my number one son” as Charlie Chan would say =) Also like DB and have a FB but I get a ton of apricot with it and it has some outstanding throw and lasting time on me. Also like Bottega Veneta-it was the scent that tossed me down the rabbit hole.

    I like Cuir Ottoman the best though, I think because it is sooo soft but still very present. it smells lived in and well used but not in a bad way. CO has been around the world while DB and BV haven’t ventured off the block yet =)

  • Ann says:

    Howdy, darling! I am in total agreement with you on the CdR and the SL DB, so lovely! i also enjoy Cuir Beluga. Ann Gerard Cuir de Nacre , as someone above mentioned, and my tiny sample of Jolie Madame, sent me by a kind perfumista. But I haven’t ever been brave enough to try Bandit. Perhaps one day …

    • Ann says:

      BTW, those gloves illustrating your post are dee-vine!

    • Tena says:

      Ann – send your addy to t f k 3 1 at yahooooooodotcaum (take spaces out and repair bot fooling spelling) and I will be pleased to send you some Bandit and Jolie Madam. They are both modern formulations but still yummy.

  • Spiker says:

    I do love a nice leather, and even a not so nice leather. Thank you for reminding me to get my sample of Daim Blonde out now that it has cooled off here. I also need to pull Memoir out for the season. I know you didn’t care fit it. But something about it hit just the right spot for me. I found it early in my perfume trip and It was really the first scent that made me go Ooooh!

  • thegoddessrena says:

    The leather that I’ve recently fallen for is Desarmant from La Parfumerie Moderne which has the unusual combo of lilac and leather. If only I wasn’t so broke at the moment…..

  • Becky says:

    Coincidentally, I’m experimenting with actually wearing the same fragrances for a few days in a row, and I am now on day FIVE if wearing my Cuir de Russie extrait. It was the first perfume I sampled and lost my ever-loving mind over in the best way. (And then I saved for months to justify the price – yikes!). I also have Cuir de Lancôme and Bvlgari Black, but for as much as I love leather, I haven’t tried any of the others you’ve mentioned, soooo… TAKING NOTES.

    I have probably mentioned, but love hearing you talk about being a fraghead in Nowhere, IL. I live in Nowhere, IA (two hours from the nearest department store) so I always have a fist raised in solidarity when it’s mentioned. Thank goodness for sampling services.

    • malsnano86 says:

      Nowheresville, Virginia here… I have a mall 30 minutes’ drive away, but all it’s got is a Belk (i.e.,Macy’s has more stuff). I can access Macy’s after an hour’s drive, but if I want to smell anything perfumista-worthy, it’s a FIVE-hour drive to get to Tyson’s Corner.

  • Connie says:

    Ooh, my favorite leathers! Cuir de Lancome, Aleksandr by Arquiste, Cuir de Nacre by Ann Gerard, and Cuir Beluga.

  • I don’t know what Chanel Antaeus smells like nowadays, but back in the day (I have a small amount of vintage) it was this lush, thick leather chypre. So good!

  • solanace says:

    It´s Spring transition here, and I’ve been wearing lots of current Vent Vert, which has something in it that reminds me of my favorite leather, vintage Jolie Madame. Also love Bottega Veneta, its subdued sweetness is spot on for me.

  • Julie L says:

    How funny you posted this last night; I JUST sprayed on from my sample of Cuir de Lancolm before bed….and decided it was NOT my favorite leather so far….something in the middle to dry-down was bothering me 🙁 Chanel Cuir de Russe is divine); LOVE me some TUSCAN LEATHER!! AND White Suede…I could roll in the stuff if it didn’t cost as much as my car. Boo!! Enjoying my samoles of DK Blacak Cashmere, too. I’m working my way through a couple other ones but I do love the buttery, soft floral ones, saving my lust for hardcore scents to the Smoky incense Oriental category. THANKS to my recent fairy for her recent gifts of leather and smoky incense!! HEAVEN!…the Satellite Paparadschu is a version of CdG Avignon. MMMM

  • Joaquim says:

    Here in Spain weather is getting colder every day (not really cold, arround 5-10 ºC, or 41-50 ºF), and I love to wear Mona di Orio’s Cuir and Slumberhouse’s Norne, but I’d love to try some classics like Cuir de Russie, or Cuir Ottoman, Arquiste’s Aleksandr.
    Thank you for the draw!

  • Neva says:

    I don’t know many leather scents, but I actually like them. They are definitely a choice for the colder season. Heeley’s Cuir Pleine Fleur is my choice for autumn and Ramon Monegal’s Mon Cuir is more of a winter leather. Because of its sweetness and cuddliness.
    Right now, when the days are getting colder, it’s She Wood by Dsquared for me 🙂

  • jjlook says:

    I need to find out if the new Cuiron is as perfect as my little decant of vintage. Also looking for something super-birch-tarry…thoughts?

  • Maya says:

    I have recently *discovered* leathers and have fallen madly in love with Cuir Fetiche. Sorry Musette, this one is red gloves. Now I want to try several other fragrances by Maitre Parfumeur et Gantier. I think that perfume house has style! I also like Heeley fragrances and finally tried Cuir Pleine Fleur. It’s another winner.

  • flowergirlbee! says:

    I tried Hermès Cuir d’Ange recently and really liked it….it is coming into summer in Australia so i am thinking green ,green and more green!!

  • leenie2 says:

    Cuir Ottoman, thank you for reminding me, I’m going to dig up my sample and throw it in the bathtub. I did a blind testing once of Cuir Ottoman on one wrist and Cuir de Russie on the other and Cuir Ottoman won wrists down.

    Since it’s gotten colder, I’ve been wearing Sonoma Scent Studio Incense Pure, I’m on an incense kick. Also, I used to live in Normal, which I know is the “big city” but really it is not.

  • greennote2 says:

    I don’t wear perfume according to season but according to whim, so sorry no transition favourites here.

    Leathers. In my rabid stage (yes, I too was there) I thought I loved leather and ordered a swag of samples. I discovered that maybe it was tobacco that I loved instead. The big searing birch tar leathers are not for me, but I do really enjoy some of the milder ones – Cuir de Russie (exclusif) I think I enjoyed and definitely Naomi Goodsir’s Cuir Velours.

    SMN Nostalgia, Hermès Bel Ami and SL Cuir Mauresque we’re not quite in my comfort zone. And Diam Blond did that whole Serge raspberry jam thing at me, love some Serge’s, but can’t do the jammy ones. I’m still curious about Lonestar Memories. And the Hermès Cuir d’Ange is going to have to sampled at some stage…

  • AllGirlMafia says:

    I’ve not been wearing my leathers recently, actually just the opposite, Cologne. Jo Malone Orange Blossom to be exact. At the moment my leather loves are Cabochard (there’s something raunchy and I LOVE it), Daim Blond (leather and fruit beautifully done and somewhat moody), and my all time love- Jolie Madame, she is soothing and strong and lovely.

    Thanks to two generous swappers I now have a sample of Cuir de Russie and a decant of Cuir de Lancome just waiting to be loved!

    • Julie L says:

      I saw, on Amazon over the weekend, a bottle of the Cabochard for 21$ just this past weekend, and if I weren’t strapped trying to pay some things off I would have jumped on it!

  • Cat McNeal says:

    Yes!! Daim blonde and bandit are two of my faves along with cuir de russie. I haven’t tried the others, but I do love me some leather scents!!!