Scents for a Chilly Spring



Hi, everyone!  Musette here, filling in for Tom who took a fall RIGHT TO THE FACE! yesterday.  Luckily nothing is broken but I suspect he is feeling a bit ‘fragile’.  I would be shrieking like a 3rd grade girl!  There are all sorts of things I don’t like about my face but ‘intact’ is definitely not one of them.  Send him some ‘get better’ wishes!

poor baby!

poor baby!

So…about the headline.  The past few weeks we’ve seen unseasonably warm temps, which has pushed a lot of things to the fore – I have tulip and iris leaves nearly mature and neighbors’ crocuses are already abloom (mine are in a shady area so it’ll be awhile longer for me).  My seedlings are coming along like mad and tra la la, it’s Spring!

Until today. Yesterday I spent several backbreaking hours in shirtsleeves, hoeing out overwintering weeds in the original veg garden, laying down weed barrier, etc.  I was so intent on the rippage that I didn’t realize I’d hoicked up a hibernating toad!  Poor thing.  I thought I’d injured him but there was none of that telltale Nasty Shoes marine note that signals a squashed toad.  I apologized, put him back in the space.  I was worried because he wasn’t moving, then I remembered he’s still hibernating, you idiot! so I covered him up with a bit of dirt and left him alone.  I came out this morning to check and he was gone so I am hoping he went back into his toad-hole.  Good thing, too, because the weather turned blustery – then downright nasty.  We’re due to get some rain, some hail and possibly some snow.  Now, knowing how much I hate Winter you’d think I would be appalled at this sudden turn of events – but I’m not.  While I hate Winter I also like the slow progression of seasons.  Those years we’ve bypassed Spring altogether were saddening.  Lilacs blooming on Monday and by Wednesday afternoon they are spent.  Sad.  My neighbor’s tulips, which she planted along the walkway 30 yrs ago, up and dead in a day.  Ick.  Spring in the Midwest should be cool, wet, a gradual warming up of the soil so the forsythia can take its time and the toads that don’t get hoicked out of the ground have a chance to pull themselves together.   Now is the time to wear those scents that only work in the chiaroscuro of a cool Spring.  I’ve waited all year to wear them, so I’m glad I get a chance to don a sweater and have my heathery moment.

Violets and Rainwater.  Yes.  YES.  I KNOW.  Shut up about it already.  I KNOW.  But, truly, it’s the perfect Spring scent – but only in cooler weather.  Violets, for me, turn a bit woozy when it gets above 65F (max) and V&R is a true violet perfume.  And the dirt is dark and wet, like CB I Hate Perfume’s Black March.  Both of those scents require a bit of a brooding sky and a light, wet, wind.

Delrae Roth’s Mythique and LeLabo’s Iris 39.  Again with the ‘brooding’ but with these a bit of sunshine and dry weather is just fine.  Both of these are the essence of a perfect Spring day, where you need a jacket and you’re glad of a light scarf but you don’t have to wear 4 layers and 2 pairs of socks.  These are the scents that I wear for a walk up Bullycow Hill, knowing there’ll be a pot of tea and a few gingersnaps when I return.

A slightly warmer, rainy day calls for Diorella or The Different Company’s Charms & Leaves (Charmes et Feuilles), the minty jasmine scent that reminds me of little crystal windchimes & rain chains.



That cold snap, where you fear you’ve put out your broccoli a tad too early……is the hailstorm gonna tear it to bits?  Those days are the days for the unusual, gorgeous Ambra Grisea; I adore this scent but it’s a rough row to hoe – I can only wear this is early Spring and late Autumn when a toggled pea coat & scarf is a necessity (at least in my mind)  – and the skies have to be blustery and gloomy so I can feel all Heathcliff and Cathy and windswept moors…… it’s absolutely perfect then.  Try it in 70F and it feels like walking around with concussion (which I have done – it’s disorienting, to say the least).



There are more but these are the Big Ones – the ones I can only wear during this time of year.  And I love them to bits and am so happy we are not transitioning to 80F in March.  There really is, to everything, ‘a season’.  And this is the Season for these challenging beauties.

What about you?  What’s your weather like and what are you wearing for it?





  • It snowed last night and my magnolias are sad and mostly dead..I wear spicier scents in cooler/cold weather. Today is a Euphoria by Calvin Klein kind of day.Where is spring?

  • maggiecat says:

    Ouch, Tom – hope you feel better soon! North Texas Spring is…well, let me go look out the window. Warm, sunny, cool, rainy, hail, thunderstorms, windy. Always windy. Wearing Lady Vengeance today – I’m loving this, but will have to see if it works in warm weather.

  • shylotus says:

    Oh dear, Tom – feel better soon!
    It’s chilly and cloudy here in D.C. I’ve been reaching for SMN’s Magnolia triple extrait a whole lot this week. It is waxy and petal-y and buttery and green and sweet and fruity… ahhh. This one lasts at least 6 hours on me and wears very close to the skin.

    Feel better Tom!

  • Ann says:

    Oh, poor baby, Tom! So sorry about your accident. Take care and feel better soon!

    Musette, what a treat to see you! Hope all is going well for you. I agree with you; there’s no more gradual progression of seasons much anymore. Just this schizophrenic back and forth, up and down — it seems Mother Nature has been off her meds for a while now. 😉 Hugs to you …

  • rosarita313 says:

    Ms A so nice to see you!! I love a cool, gradual spring. The first part of March had me a little concerned with the unseasonable temps but we’re back to normal now with forsythia just starting to bloom. I like chypres and iris in the spring, also En Voyage Zelda and Lutens Gris Clair, what a favorite little oddball. Enjoy your gardening my dear.
    Tom, commiserations on your fall, it’s such a nasty shock to your whole body. Cherish yourself a bit.

    • Ann says:

      Darling! So glad you mentioned Zelda; I had forgotten about her. Need to go dig up my sample. Thanks!

  • Geo says:

    Take heart . We visited Borda light house on kangaroo island today. In the 1800s within days of arriving, a Captain Woodward tripped on a tree stump. Fell and impaled his eye on a stick in the ground. He died a few days later. Gruesome.

    So take heart, Your ok and smile !


  • LaDona says:

    It’s been warm and sunny, as usual, in San Diego…so yesterday I spritzed on my sample of puredistance Black. It wafted all day long. Mmmmmmm.

  • poodle says:

    It’s chilly, gray, and damp here. I’m still wearing my winter sweaters and my winter perfumes. We haven’t had enough warmth for me to be lulled in to thinking its really spring yet. I can tell its coming by the plants starting to pop but I’m not feeling it yet. Until we string together a few pleasant and sunny days I’ll be here hibernating like that toad.

  • Neva says:

    I’ve just discovered Malle’s Le Parfum de Therese, wore it when it was warmer and it was okay, but when the weather turned cooler again it felt amazing: I definitely fell in love with it.

  • Katherine says:

    It’s been a tough month here in Texas. Warm and then cold and windy. It sounds crazy, but I wore eau de Shalimar and it was perfect for the windy 55 degree farenheit weather. A lemon merigue pie with a bergamot tea opening

  • Portia says:

    Hey there Musette,
    Great to see you as always. Our weather is totally changeable right now. We are going from cold and rainy in the morning, hot sunshine at midday and blustery again for afternoon tea. So instead of wearing for the weather I am spritzing for my own self. loads of my stalwarts and a few newbies. Just bought Heeley Cuir Pleine Fleur and I like it very much, gorgeous honeyed leather softened by a green bouquet.

    Tom! You poor bugger. It’s been the wars for you this year already. Hugging you from here.
    Portia xx

  • HeidiC says:

    Ohhhhhhhh…yes, CB’s Black March is perfect. That earth-waking-up accord. Need to go find my sample. Apres L’Ondée and Hermessence Osmanthe Yunnan are also rocking my world.