Crap Present Fallout

Hey Posse! HAPPY NEW YEAR! For everyone who got rubbish presents over the giving season, time to buy something for you that you’ll love. I get it. Almost everyone leaves their gift buying till last. Suddenly they are running through throngs of people with only a 3 hour window to buy 15 gifts for their nearest and dearest. It’s bedlam and the mall has the 8 shops you need on different levels in opposite ends. 3000+ steps later you have half your gifts and 30 minutes. Panic buying of expensive, non person specific, soon to be garbage ensues. So much gets goodwilled, regifted or trashed, it’s appalling but who has enough room for more junk? I call this the Crap Present Fallout and it makes me so sad.

At our house for birthdays now I pick something expensive that I really want but would not buy for myself and then crowdfund it amongst my mates. They give anything from $10 to whatever and then I get something that will be used. Everyone feels good because they have given a part of that gift. This year it was a new bed and mattress for the spare room where I now spend quite a lot of my nights. HEAVEN! In the past it has been leather motorcycle jacket, chest of drawers, perfume cabinet and other great things. ALL still in use and loved with gratitude.

Anyway…. here are a few things that have arrived lately that I think might just turn the Crap Present Fallout around for you.

Crap Present Fallout Jan 22

Crap Present Fallout

Alameda by Robert Piguet

I remember Alameda being launched in 2013 and falling for it. Somehow though it eluded my grasp. Not even sure how. Back then I was buying EVERYTHING that took my fancy. Anyway, fast forward to 2021 and my beautiful mate Tim surprises me with a bottle. This is NOT a Crap Present. Though nowadays you’ll find it very reasonably priced on the discounters.

Alameda is beautiful and slightly strange. Imagine a lily in a vase of very cold water that is in a room warmed by a fire. Not smoky but that wonderful smell of wood burning cleanly. Overlay this with a waxy rose and resins. Then underneath you smell the dry leather, earthy coolness of orris.

Bernadette Margaret Evelyn Theresa by Freddie Albrighton

This time a spice woods opening amber with a lush floralcy. Our newest Australian perfume brick & mortar store LKNU is also a long time online Etailer and distributor. They sent me the Freddie Albrighton samples with another order and I was not sure which one I would go for. Much as Bernadette Margaret Evelyn Theresa is my standout favourite, being another amber gave me pause. TBH I bought this before Xmas in case I needed something to give to people to give me. Yes, foresight is everything. A splendid way to avoid Crap Present Fallout.

Bourrasque (2020) by Le Galion

It seems I am finding more and more amber perfumes to love. It was a very early love of mine and I feel like my perfume journey has come full circle. Seriously, I could probably live my whole life with only a wardrobe of amber fragrances. This came in my Le Galion 90th Anniversary sample set and I’ve fallen hard. It looks like the Sample Sets have all sold out. Bummer.

It seems my sample has gone walkabout. My memory is a ginger spiced leathery osmanthus beauty undercut by a lightly animalic, patchouli rich amber. Sensational and blended as only Le Galion knows how.

Corpus Equus by Naomi Goodsir

I bought a sample of the latest Naomi Goodsir fragrance as soon as it was in stock at Surrender To Chance. It sat there while I was trying all the other stuff because I was so excited about a new Bertrand Duchafour collaboration with Naomi, the last one being in their initial three perfumes Or du Serail. SO EXCITING!

Dark, devilishly smoky open. Burning bacon on a campfire with a side order of singed hair and toe jam. Sounds disgusting but it’s meditative and transportive. Per fumé! Positively tribal and smelling like I imagine the gates to hell would smell. Both terrifying and strangely alluring. Like making bad choices as vengeance against trauma. If you’ve ever read Terry Pratchett DiskWorld novels then this is the smell of the king under the hill.

Dans la Nuit by Worth

Did you know that FragranceNet has a special section for Mini Fragrance? I stumbled across this treasure trove in early November as I was starting to make 5 of my friends Advent Calendars. Sadly they didn’t arrive in time to go out Dec 1. So they ended up making very inexpensive additions to preset packs for the big day.

I bought 6 of the Dans la Nuit and it’s such a delightful, soft powdery spritz with some woods & flowers that I kept one for myself. As you can see in the pic it has already had quite a lot of wear. It’s unisex, comfortable and cheap as chips. No idea how much it resembles the 1924 original but I like it.

Reb’l Fleur by Rihanna

Yes, I know. Rihanna’s juicy sweet confectionary banger comes from 2010 but this is my first bottle, bought off a Sale Doc on FaceBook. No shrinking violet, Reb’l Fleur is a super charged fruit salad with vanilla undertones. Big, bold and making a statement; a couple of spritzes go a long way. If your intent is to make an impact then this is an excellent inexpensive turnaround on your Crap Presents.

Summer Rose Body Oil by Aftelier Perfumes

Mandy Aftel makes perfumes and scented products that move me joyously almost every time. Here she has infused “moisturizing jojoba oil and fractionated coconut oil” with “a soft bouquet of honeyed, fruity, and slightly spicy roses on a summer’s day.” ROSES! Putting your head into a blooming rose in the morning, roses from Middle Eastern attars, Roses in vases, dried roses, jammy roses, spice roses, fresh May roses. Mandy has captured all the roses and then created something silky and luxurious that sinks into your skin leaving your lightly fragranced. A perfect under layer for anything rosy. Best thing is that 50ml is only US$75! You’d never find something so exquisite for that price.

Tabu Soap & Deodorant

How did I not know that my beloved Tabu shower gel had soap and deodorant options? SO BLOODY CHEAP too. Even if the perfume is too high octane for you the bathing products are delightfully scented and will perfectly pair with any spice or amber based fragrance. It’s always nice to layer your scent with something similar. At this price you’ll be thrilled with your purchase and have given yourself a lovely gift to blow away the cobwebs of the Crap Presents.

Crap Present Fallout Jan 22

I hope there’s something here to gift yourself after everyone else gave you rubbish.
Portia xx



  • Musette says:

    How did I not know about this Piguet? HOW DID I NOT KNOW????

    well. Now I know.


    • Portia says:

      HA! Musette,
      Do you remember Joe Garces? When he was in charge of Piguet they released a SLEW of stuff. It was really hard to keep up. I thought that well over 50% was worthy of FB too so it got quite speedy.
      You might adore Alameda, I do.
      Portia xx

      • Musette says:

        I do remember him – and now that I think on it I remember that HUGE outlay of new scents, which is probably how I missed it. I’m definitely going to check it out because the one thing I absolutely NEED is more perfume! 😉


  • March says:

    Ooooh, I love your gift-giving! It’s been an interesting transition to/for me over the past couple years, as we move into adult-gifting with less … onslaught of stuff. Mostly we do a group spreadsheet and then people discuss separately amongst themselves, although non-list presents are welcome. I even have my own stocking now, after it always being “for the kids” (fun, small silly gifts, they gave me my stocking last year!) Glad you got things you can use and enjoy all year.

    • Portia says:

      Hey March,
      I love the idea of Stockings. Jin and I may have to invest in a couple of them next year.
      You are navigating a really strange time in the life of a family. Made even weirder by the chicks leaving the nest and flying off together. Fabulous for them, bit of a bummer for you.
      Portia xx

  • Gina T says:

    Where do you find the Tabu bar soap, Portia?

    • Portia says:

      Hey GinaT,
      Just put Tabu Soap into Google and it will show you a range of shopping options.
      I found an Aussie place that does them for a very good price that way after Google-ing Tabu.
      Portia xx

  • Tara C says:

    I announced before the holidays that I didn’t want anything, to avoid the useless gifts issue. I prefer to buy my own gifts. Husband usually just tells me to buy something with his credit card. :-). Mom & dad have decided to give cash. Perfect!

    • Portia says:

      YAY for husbands CCs.
      Jin usually buys a few things throughout the year as I say how much I like them. I now need to say, “That’s lovely, but I don’t want it” otherwise I get things that looked good for the moment I first saw them but…
      Cash is KING!
      Portia xx

  • Kathleen says:

    We have mostly given up giving gifts to the adults in our family, to avoid the rubbish gifts that are wanted or needed. I spent Christmas with my sister and we exchanged “stocking stuffers” at her insistence, little items that we know we use and enjoy. I usually gift myself a bottle of perfume and couldn’t decide on anything, until I just yesterday saw something that piqued my interest. No 1 de CHANEL L’eau Rouge Revitalizing Fragrance Mist. Perhaps this is what I was waiting for?
    Best wishes for a happy and healthy New Year to you and Jin xoxo

  • cinnamon says:

    Most gifts I get and give at this point are requested — not quite as imaginative as your system but means I generally don’t get awful things. This year, my son couldn’t think of anything he “really” wanted so he got small things I knew he’d enjoy and basically the equivalent of a player to be named later (ie, he can ask for something when he finds something he wants). Sigh, that’s quite a perfume list. I’m not expecting anything in the post at this point. I am trying to keep myself from thinking about the Miller Harris Tea candle I read about and the Byredo Chai one that has been on my list for a while. I am now contemplating the small size Tauer Sundowner the next time I go to Europe (ie, having it shipped to hotel in country regarding which Tauer ships to — as they don’t ship to UK).

    • Portia says:

      Very sensible Cinnamon.
      LOVE that you have items shipped to your hotel. I never did that.
      I hope you get at least one of those candles.
      Portia xx