You MAY have noticed that I’m on my summer every other week schedule. Just so much going on that Tuesday always creeps up on my and about 8p I look up and go, crap. May aim for doing every other until fall works better. I’m also randomly inserting some pictures of my tropical plants from the backyard. First one over there is the banana! I love this thing!
In the last month or so, I’ve been stumbling around in indie perfumes. It started when I was just looking for a very note specific fragrance and google landed me in Reddit. It’s a really confusing area, always has been, and I tend to run the other direction when there is a menu of 242 perfumes on a page, and I need to pick something.
Persevered through that and found some indie lines that get recommended over and over, and I’ve been pretty surprised and pleased with many of them. I remember one point where the indie micro batch small perfumers always had a distinctive scented quality. Now the materials that many of them are working with seem pretty good – more interesting and finished, way less crafty smelling. Do you know what I mean? Not sure I can define it better than that.
I think of the indie perfumes in a couple of tiers. There are the larger, more established indies, many who have been nominated for awards, they tend to do just a few perfumes really well, like Imaginary Authors, La Curie, Papillon, Heretic Parfums, Aftelier, DSH, Soivohle, Dusita, Zoologist, etc., etc. Many of these have deeper raw materials and packaging budgets, though, and that’s obvious as you smell them. I don’t want to compare them to the less well-funded indie, so I plop them up in this Niche Indie category. In this area, the quality of materials is high, you’ll find some really unique formulations, but they also tend to be pretty expensive. In this range, you will also find the labels on their bottles are good, easy to read, no fancy schmancy, unreadable script printing. This is really important! Downstairs in the perfume room, every 6 feet I have a light with a magnifier to look through because some of the writing on perfume bottles is just ridiculously small or illegible. (this photo is my mango tree, which has doubled in size in a month!)
In the next indie tier, you have some pretty talented perfumers that make more scents, often have a permanent collection, use decent to high quality materials, but then they have a lot of seasonal collections throughout the year – I guess trying out new things to see what people really like, and then some of those go into the permanent or house collection. Some examples here – Arcana Wildcraft, Sucreabeille, Sixteen92, House of Glois, Alkemia, Deconstructing Eden, Solstice Scents, Nocturnal Alchemy (NAVA) and many, many more. This is the area where I’m in right now. It has been surprising how good some of these scents are. It’s also very confusing – lots of scents, lots of changes, sometimes impossible to read labels (this is a huge pet peeve, I know I’m weird) and I’m having trouble navigating it. For those of you that have done this and have some small indie faves, do you have some recommendations? Helpful hints on how to navigate? Favorites in a line? I’d like to keep exploring, but, oh, my, it’s been a struggle sorting through them! For March and Musette, I did find an indie called Danger Noodle. I ordered it!
(picture on the left is the gardenia – all blooming!) and then further down the line are two mandevillias or bougainvillea or – I get them mixed up, but they are pretty!)
Winners of the Heretic Dirty Coconut – Koyel and SpringPansy. Just click the Drop Us a Note at the top, send me an email with your address, remind me what you won. I will give you a quick reply “Got it!” email so you know it didn’t wind up in my spam filter and get the sample out to you. Congrats, I hope you love it!