Making room

Three days until March – which in my book is officially spring. Yahooeeey! Now I know some of you poor folk are shrouded in snow and permafrost yet, but here daffodils are all opened up, leafbuds are swelling ready to burst, the sap is rising so fast it’s almost audible in the ache and creak of the earth. The purple acacia in my front garden is covered in its froth of yellow pompom blossom; the species tulips have poked their way through the gravel; the alliums have emerged – their slightly hairy spiralled green leaves, lime fresh, will die back before floral firework explosions open in April and May. Am I perky or what? We don’t get many frosts, and they’re rarely severe enough to set back the soft growth that’s already begun, ever earlier it seems. I’m itching to spend more and more time outdoors.

And, in honour of this time of year, I’m listing. I’m not generally your listing type, except I become so seasonally, or when ridiculously stressed, but that’s another story. I’m a long way from stressed these days. The listing: I have a colour-coded spreadsheet of my seedsowing schedule (103 types of vegetable and cut flower at last count) and, more relevant to this blog, I even list the perfumes I’m excited to try and/or buy. Unsurprisingly, there are a few Neil Morris numbers in there – winging their way across the Atlantic as I type, I imagine. Drooling over the idea of Midnight Tryst and Fetish. Then there are those of which I now need decants, because I’ve been craving them but they’re not me enough to justify a full bottle – if that makes any sense. Included here are Tom Ford Black Orchid (Update – bought a 30ml bottle from (h)e(ll)bay just now – a guy’s gotta snaffle a bargain, right?) and Miller Harris l’air de rien ( a bottle I bought and returned in December, realising that 100mls was just too much for me).

Other list items are things that have been released for some time, but that I’ve never got round to buying, even though I love them. Top of this list, and guaranteed an automatic purchase in April or May, is Hermessence Vetiver Tonka. I used the last of my large sample last night, and the hazelnutty richness with the green vetiver once again took my breath away. It’s all of 100 mls of this one for me. There are also plenty of scents that were released sometime ago that I’m still yet to try, and wonder why I haven’t, so they’re listed too – Vierges et Toreros for example. But these are strictly samples only.

Finally, there are those that I’m at risk of buying unsniffed. Three fall into this category right now. Though I’m a pretty unChanel kinda guy, Sycomore is calling me. However, his voice is a whisper in comparison to the clarion call of first Serge Lutens’ Five o’clock Au Gingembre, and now Hermes’ Un Jardin apres le Mousson. I’ve often been lucky enough to get advanced sniffage of new Serge releases, and though this time I am getting a mouillete / tester strip / spill of the perfume from Paris, that’s not enough of a taste really. I knew Louve wouldn’t be a fit, but this silly-named number has my (slightly silly) name all over it. Who doesn’t crave ginger at five o’clock? I have a not-often-shared addiction to ginger preserves, and my pumpkin pie served with ginger and cardamom cream is genius, even if I do say so myself. And I’m you’re regular spice slut, especially in the hands of Christopher Sheldrake. And seeing as sweet notes are absorbed by my skin, I’m not even worried by the candied. Must. Have. And. Soon. But even this rank acquisitiveness faded into obscurity when I read Robin’s announcement at nowsmellthis about the latest Hermes Jardin scent. Kerala? Post-monsoon? Ginger? Cardamom? A vetiver accord created by Ellena? Oh my oh my. Oh My. Oh! My! etc.

All this means I need to make room in my scent wardrobe by evicting fragrances that I rarely use nowadays. I’m determined to maintain my count around the 70 mark, as I start to be overwhelmed by any more than this. I’m not a great decision maker, and too much choice is a nightmare for me! I know in theory there’s not really much difference between 70 bottles and100, but in practice for me it’s all the difference between knowing what to grab and being stymied and choosing wrongly. Samples and decants don’t count. They’re allowed to go forth and multiply effortlessly. I rarely wear them out – they’re more my bedtime testers.

So, in complete homage to total plagiarism of March’s post in November, I would like to give away 9 bottles, some partially used, some hardly used, some half empty, of scents which I no longer wear or, in one case, of which I have a duplicate. If you’d like to send me a little something in return, random or otherwise, that would be lovely, but you’re under no obligation. Just leave a comment below highlighting which scent you’d like, and I’ll draw the winners from a hat or similar vessel, announcing them next week, and emailing them for their address in the meantime. I’ll throw in a local product or two, too. Perhaps a tutu or two, too.

The scents are as follows:

l’Artisan Voleur de Roses 50 mls – about 60% full. Roses and I can love each other, but we never ever play nicely together.

l’Artisan Bois Farine 50mls – about 50% full. Duplicate bottle. How did that happen?

Boucheron Jaipur Homme 100ml tester bottle no box – 80% full. Too smooth for me.

Rochas Lui 50mls – about 70% full. Too much neroli for me.

Lanvin Arpege pour Homme 50mls – about 60% full. I loved you for a while…

Ungaro III (promised to Erin K, if she’d still like it) 50 mls, hardly used, no box. Roses, again.

Jo Malone Amber and Lavender 30ml – 60% full, no box.

Guerlain Habit Rouge edt 50mls hardly used.

And finally, the pià¨ce de résistance (ha!) Hugo Boss Soul 50ml, no box, 75% full (must have appeared by magic… And please, if you fancy having this one, there is DEFINITELY no need to send something back my way. I’d just be happy to find it a home).

Hilarious spring image from

  • Adam says:

    If you haven’t given it away yet I would love the Rochas Lui. Thanks!

  • BBliss says:

    Hope you get your NMs soon – Tryst is magical! Can’t wait to hear more and discuss!

  • Kevin says:

    Hi, would like the l’Artisan Voleur de Roses , Thankyou!

  • Solander says:

    Oops, a bit late here, the draw is long closed. Nevermind! I can afford VdR if I really need it… And that lamb is adorable. 🙂

  • Solander says:

    Another one for Voleur de Roses…
    York is full of daffodils too. I just think it’s wrong – spring flowers without snow melting is just wrong. Especially snowdrops, they’re supposed to peak up through the snow dammit! Cherry blossoms have been in bloom all winter here… I don’t mind the mild climate, but the lack of snow makes me miss it even though the sleet and ice used to annoy me when I had to live through it for two or three months.
    Speaking of daffodils and spring, I absolutely adore CB’s To See A Flower. Most CB’s don’t work for me but that one really does – the faint, lovely scent of bulb flowers and moss and earth and snow melting…
    I felt the earthquake! It woke me up and I wasn’t quite sure whether I had dreamt the house was shaking until I woke up a second time by my hysterical housemate knocking on my door.

  • Lee says:

    Hey folks – the draw has now closed. If you’re name’s down, you’re in. Expect to be informed! Otherwise you’ll find out who won next week.:d

  • Julie says:

    :)>- I would LOVE to be entered for the Jo Malone! :::crossing fingers and saying a prayer:::

  • zeram1 says:

    TIA for the generosity. I’d love to enter the drawing for any of the following: l’Artisan Bois Farine, Guerlain Habit Rouge, Ungaro III (if Erin K doesn’t want it, if so then I’d love to also be in the drawing for the Jo Malone or the Rochas Lui).

    Already have and love L’A VdR, and sole off my Jaipur as well.

  • Adam says:

    My first post! Please put me down for Habit Rouge.

  • Lena says:

    I’ll take whatever nobody else wants! Cheers!

  • clare stella says:

    Lickle, what’s lickle? I’ve been called fickle but never lickle. Gotta look it up….

  • the real slf says:

    Goodness, to stare down middle age and such a plethora of scent folk all at once. I just fell down this rabbit hole a short while ago…but obsessions and learning curves being such as they are, am joining the mix…I am learning, trying, learning, but certainly can’t beg any long-term passion for a particular scent. HOWEVER, I would like to be considered for Bois de Farine. Since I am a newbie, I am not sure which of my it-just-exploded collection you would be interested in, but as a long time gardener, there just might be something of interest in that realm, too.

    And, if geo-politics come into play, I am NOT from Beverly Hills…you can find me somewhere beneath the permafrost and snow betwixt you…

    • Lee says:

      Nice to have you here with us. Cosy rabbit hole, isn’t it? And so well scented…

      You’re in the draw, and keep warm!

      • the real slf says:

        Indeed it is a well scented rabbit hole…wait! Let’s get a nose on that name! What fun copy to write that would be…

        Thank you for the kind welcome.

  • clare stella says:

    Oh, I’m a poor little newbie here who would so, so love that Bois Farine. Please throw me in the vessel. I will send you a lovely present in return. Oh please, pick me, pick me!!!! Clare Stella:((

  • Jennifer S. S. says:

    I would like to try the Rochas, Roses, or Jo Malone, in that order. It’s awesome of you to do this for your readers!

  • assorted-raisins says:

    Enter me in for the Bois de Farine or Vouler de Roses–If there’s a chance! And the widdle lambie is so cute, or in speak, anerable!

  • sylvia says:

    won’t you please put me in the drawing for the jo malone and the bois farine? love the lamb picture by the way. so cute. baa

  • Cheri says:

    Voleur de Roses – I traded it away and now I wish I hadn’t. :(( It’s heartbreaking!

    I am also looking forward to the new Hermes and Serge Lutens. Oh, what a spring it will be! 🙂

    Thank you! 🙂

  • mikeperez23 says:

    Love Vetiver Tonka and Black Orchid – looking forward to the new Serge (which I saw on US Ebay a couple days ago…!) and the new Hermes Jardin also!

    And yes the JC Ellena love doth know no boundaries…so please sign me up for the Bois Farine giveaway quicketh! 😀

    Oh – and THANKS Lee for your generosity. You and this site give me warm fuzzies.

    • Lee says:

      Oh yeah – almost at $200 now I think.

      You’re in the draw Mike.

      And glad you get the fuzzies – makes me happy to know that.

  • Loulou says:

    would love to get the bois farine and would give the Jo Malone a home as well. will respond with something interesting, though i can’t say just what at the moment. thx!

  • tmp00 says:

    Hey Lee- you didn’t feel that quake, did you?

    • Lee says:

      Nah – I think I’m in part of England that missed out on the experience. Or I slept through it…

  • rosarita says:

    Oh, thanks so much for the sweet picture! Aren’t lambs the most endearing creatures? I always wanted one when I was little.
    I’m with you on the new Hermes Jardin, it sounds wonderful! I just swapped for another decant of Sur Le Nil, for the coming season.:)
    I know you’ve had a bazillion comments today, but I just got home. Can I still be a contendah for the Voleur de Rose? I love it, and my sample is almost gone. @};-

    • Lee says:

      Lambs are lovely. Stupid as anything, but lovely.

      you’re in the draw rosarita. Never too late for you!

  • Amy H says:

    Longtime reader, but rarely post. Lee, I had no idea you had such an extensive garden. And what a cute little baby sheep (or is it a goat) in the photo — is she one of yours? Great post. I’m realizing that I love nuttiness as a perfume characteristic — Vetiver Tonka, Bois Farine (could you please put my name in the hat for that one), Mechant Loup, and Ava Luxe’s Johri, which I’m sampling for the first time today, all have that in common for me.

    • Lee says:

      Good to have you in board Amy. My gardens ren’t very big really – I live in a Georgian terrace with front and back gardens crammed full of plants – but I also have an allotment of about 1/3 acre and that’s where the veg, fruit and cut flowers are grown…

  • donanicola says:

    So many comments Lee – you are deservedly popular today! Just checking in to say I agree with you on the lemmings and to add the Guerlain Fig and Iris (I’m so retro – only just recognising how much I like iris). Stay well.

  • G D says:

    I would love to be in the drawings for the Jaipur, Jo Malone and Habit Rogue…..I love the Vetiver Tonka it is my favorite Hermessence line

  • grizzlesnort says:

    You all are too kind.
    Or you’re masters of whipping the little people into a frenzy.
    Put my name in the for the drawing(s?). If I only get one choice, its Habit Rouge. Otherwise i’d be quite happy with any of the others except BOSS(and Jaipur’s in my cabinet already.) -grizz

  • Elizabeth says:

    Un Jardin apres le Mousson sounds wonderful. I can’t wait to try it.

    Please enter me in the drawing for the Bois Farine!

  • Arwen says:


    I am a long time lurker. I don’t post much because I see that most posters are very knowledgeable about perfumes and perfume houses. Today I could not resist your offer to find good homes for the fragrances you are giving up.

    I received a sample of Voleur Roses some time ago, I liked it but was not sure about it, but for some reason I became obsessed with it.

    I hope you can include me in the drawing for it.

    Thank you for all the wonderful posts!

    • kathleen says:

      They all do make everything sound so delicious, don’t they? I haven’t gotten past the point of Yum or Yuck yet.

    • Lee says:

      It’s all the art of blagging it arwen. Don’t be intimidated – there’s no special talent pool here (at least not from my direction!):d

  • March says:

    Dude … only 111 comments?


    You only have to send me your love, baby.

  • pantera lilly says:

    Oh Lee, I love to read you whenever you post, along with March and Patty. Please sign me up for L’Artisan Voleur de Roses, I love this scent, although a friend once told me it smelled like bug spray!! Much love to you my sweet.

  • Christine says:

    I would love the Voleur de Roses (or Bois Farine, which I originally had down – I can’t make up my mind!)

    Or, if you ever get tired of that gorgeous gorgeous Vetiver Tonka. Oh how I love that one…there’s a place for it across the pond 😉

    Hope all is well and I am jealous(!) of your early spring. We’re still waiting here.

  • MC says:

    Hi! I would love to be added to the hat for either Voleur de Roses or Bois Farine. Good luck weeding down to 70!

  • Linda says:

    Lee, I would so much like to be added to the draw for Voleur de Roses. It’s so bewitching on my partner.

  • Teri says:

    Please add my name to the ever-growing list of people interested in the Voleur de Roses. This somewhat difficult fragrance is a new favorite of mine.

    I think I could find a thing or two local and non-exported that might pique your interest in return. 🙂

  • Anthony says:

    This is a total example of the uncommon kindness and willingness and excitedness to share experience that I see so often in the perfume community… it’s uncanny and it makes me very proud to have stumbled upon it! 🙂 Please enter me for Bois Farine: that fragrance has a weird but major hold on me. And speaking of having a hold, Vetiver Tonka? It’s love right there… it’s sour AND sweet on me, and it literally makes those little saliva glands under my tongue go into overdrive when I put it on… Hope it finds its way into your stash soon! 🙂

    • erin k. says:

      VT really is mouthwatering, isn’t it? how awesome do you have to be to make grass mouthwatering? :d

      i get a similar effect from Ambre Narguile, too – maybe JCE has perfected the “mouthwatering” accord…


    • Lee says:

      You’re in Anthony. And what an apposite description of VT!

  • noyna says:

    Please put me in the hat for Bois Farine and Voleur! As to the earlier question about perfumes going off in a year — how long have your perfumes lasted before going off? I’m sure much depends on storage methods, etc. My mother keeps her perfume in the fridge — is this a good idea? Hmm…makes sense in sultry Thailand, I guess… Anyone else do this?

    • Lee says:

      I imagine too much heat’ll ruin a scent quickly – mine are all kept in cool, dark places – cellar-like. The fridge is a good idea – the Frederic Malles are all refrigerated – this may be a bit gimmicky in stores, but I know most accords are kept chilled at the big firms…

      You’re in the draw noyna.:d

      • Debbie says:

        Don’t you love the fact that they’re refrigerated but they’re in clear glass containers? Uh, what about the light? It was really hard to take him seriously in his “we keep them perfectly fresh” speech while they’re displayed in the light. Unless light isn’t as important as I thought or if that case magically keeps light out somehow….

  • chanel22 says:

    Well, we have snow on the ground here, a truly rare site, but the buttercups will be here soon enough. I’d love either L’Artisan Voleur de Roses or Bois Farina. How a fun and generous idea!

  • MarkDavid says:

    Im so glad it’s Lee-Wednesday. Its just what I needed after the ridiculousness of the past 2 hours. Ever have one of those days? Im in my Computer Drafting class and I went to move my CPU b/c I felt cramped and I hate to feel cramped. Don’t Cramp me. So I moved it and the entire station of computers turned off. I only moved it 2 inches! Some arse had the cord stretched to within an inch of its life. So 8 terminals shut down and of course – no one had their work saved. I thought people were going to run up to the roof and jump off like the stock market had just crashed.

    So I went outside, had a cigarette (and I dont even smoke,) came back in and came directly here. Its like a coffee house in here, felt I could vent. Lets hope the rest of the day is a success. Im wearing my Fleur de Narcisse today, too! I dont understand how all of this could have happened on a Narcisse day!! Its been an hour and people are still bitching like I ruined their lives.

    Listen, I just don’t know how you do it. Im 200 strong and growing and I can’t part with a single one – even the ones that I haven’t worn in years. They’re like my children. Id save them in a fire before anything else.

    I did that clean-house thing once, a long time ago and as soon as they were out of my sight, I craved them again and went back and bought all new bottles of them. So I wont make that mistake any more.

    Listen kitten, put me down for Jaipur Homme and Habit Rouge. If I win, I’ll put myself in the mail, ok? I’ll pop out, cook you dinner, iron your shirts, get back in the box and be on my way. Thats a good gift, Lee. Lets face it. Who else here is willing to box themselves up and fly steerage? hmm? Get stuck between golfclubs, boxes of live reptiles and a Weimareiner? (sounds like heaven to me – except the golfclubs) Just think about all this when you reach your hand in that hat. (Im not above any of this, let me tell you)

    I “make room” by buying a new piece of furniture to hold this mess. My collection is like a hermit crab – it needs a new shell every once in a while. Im excited about the new Hermes and Serge scents, as well. Hate the name of the Serge, though. Its…well, its stupid, frankly. You’re going to love those NM scents.

    ciao bello

    • Louise says:

      Ah, MD-sorry your having a crap start to the day. Surely the Narcisse and our club will soften the edges? I don’r know which image I like more…you popping out, or Lee’s expression? 😮

      • Debbie says:

        It is a great image. :d

      • MarkDavid says:

        After that long in a box, I don’t know how much popping I’d be up for. I’ll probably just crawl out gasping for air, sweating, and mumbling about how he picked a great day to work overtime – leaving me on his porch for 4 hours passed the time my air was estimated to run out. Thats my luck, really.

        So Lee – no overtime from now until…well…

        And if you receive a collect call from a Box, please accept the charges.

    • Debbie d says:

      As a former computer programmer/analyst and DBA, it. is. their. fault. for. not. saving. their. work.

      Screw ’em.

      Yeah, welcome to the dark side of Debbie.>:)

      • MarkDavid says:

        The Dark Side of Debbie makes me feel better, quite frankly – I love it.

        I feel like printing “SAVE YOUR WORK” signs and posting them at every computer…right in the middle of their screens.

        • Debbie says:

          Yeah. It sounds like they need the signs. On the other hand, if they’re right in the middle of their screens, you might have even more antagonism on your hands because I bet they don’t have a sense of humor either….in addition to lacking responsibility.

          Well, on the other hand, we can hope that if this was a painful enough lesson, they will have learned the lesson. It only took me one time.

      • erin k. says:

        welcome to the dark side, baby! it’s more fun over here! >:)

        and MD, just think of how bad the day could’ve been if you weren’t wearing the Narcisse! it might’ve saved your life! :d


    • Lee says:

      Let us know how the rest of the day goes! Poor you. But you smell wonderful.

      I don’t want you to suffer in a box – let’s save that til some other time – I don’t even have a porch you see…

      I hope you’re enjoying the dark side!

  • Joan says:

    Very relieved that scents going off is a load of whaddeling doo as I have a 10 year supply of MR in every incarnation, parfum, oil, body lotion, I’m such a hoarder. It’s been deadly cold and icy here for weeks, so I am enjoying the lamb and daffodil visual very much. I am vicariously frolicking in your lovely garden, hairy spiralled green leaves and all. (I bet you didn’t know I had spiralled green leaves did you??)

    • Lee says:

      Enjoy your vicarious frolics. Any time, my sweet.

      I *know* perfumes do go off, but only one has that I’ve owned – a small bottle of Fahrenheit…

  • Lulu says:

    Ummm! Put me down for the Bois Farine! Adore the stuff and can never find it/cannot afford it when I *do* find it, LOL.
    Love your posts, BTW — I have never commented before but I do read faithfully every day.

  • Catherine says:

    Dear Lee,
    Your first paragraph is so visceral that I started to see the lime greens and shoots poking out in my own garden. I could smell the earth under the lilies of the valleys, even thought two feet of snow covered them and more ice and snow just fell. You live in an elven world far away from the Midwest–but you do give me hope.

    Please, I am not looking to be the draw–too many bottles suddenly of my own, with others on the way (how does that happen?). In preparation for spring, I’ve been organizing and listing myself. The house interior is being completely repainted–all three floors–and the main color is, indeed, called Springtime! I’m culling the perfume boxes. And I’ve been arranging piles of stuff to take to the local charities around town.

    So far this year, only one new release has called to me–Amyitis. Haven’t smelled it, but she is to me what Serge is to others. That one gets bought unsniffed this year–and I’ve never bought unsniffed before. Does that raise me another rank in this perfume world? And, then, there is Orio–which came to the States in *winter*–what was that all about?! A must have for sparkly, night-time heat. Then, last, Parfum de Thérèse. I may have entered the world of FM late, but here I am! Mmmmm, fruits and vetiver and a little leather jacket–few things are better than that.

    • Debbie says:

      I have entered the FM world late too. I ordered four of the large decants: Une Rose, Lipstick Rose, Un Fleur de Cassie and L’Eau d’Hiver. Oh, how I love the last one! I haven’t tried the Cassie yet. On the roses, Lipstick Rose really appeals to me because I always loved that scent in lipsticks. I thought it was silly, but then look. A great perfumer loved it too. 🙂 Une Rose is really a perfect rose.

      Tell me more about your favorite FM’s! I would love to listen if you want to type!

      • Catherine says:

        Hi, Debbie! I’m so happy that I’m not the only one missing the train. I think my body chemistry has changed enough, somehow, in the past year, because all the FMs used to make me cough up my cookies. Now, I’m wearing Carnal Flower like there’s nothing else in my cupboard! That is my favorite. I also love (and, of course, want) Thérèse (a day eating and drinking in rural France), Cassie (hot, sexy perfection), L’Eau d’Hiver (nostalgia of rainy Spring–not winter, for me), Iris Poudre (who knew snow could be warm?), and Vetiver (it’s just too darn penetrating to *not* love). I greatly admire all the others. Unfortunately, I cannot seem to handle most rose scents–including Malle’s. I fell all over myself at the smell of Lipstick Rose–for years, I bought Guerlain lipsticks *just* for the smell. Une Rose is beautiful, but SL’s Rose de Nuit fits my skin and nose much better. And I could go on. I started with the Test Kit–the same as you, essentially, with decants–and that gave me so much time and freedom to discover the line. I hope you fall as hard as I do.

        And to continue the threads about your questions on shelf-life, perfumes can last a long time–they evolve sometimes, but they go off only if treated poorly. That’s why vintage can be so marvelous–I have bottles over 40 years old! I do have nice air conditioning that I control–and that’s key in the summer, in my opinion (though I would stick them in a sealed container in the fridge if I didn’t–though I hate that idea). Keep all boxes–make new boxes (to cover up the flimsy cardboard ones! And put it all where the sun don’t shine! :d

        But I will say…I look upon those months with just a few bottles with a smile. It’s like remembering childhood–so simple, so innocent. 😡 When everything was “my favorite.”

        • Debbie says:

          Thank you for clearing up the shelf life question. I had wondered why the vintages could be so great when they were supposed to have gone off long ago….Now it’s all coming together. I keep mine in the boxes or dark, nontransparent fabric pouches. They’re in my bedroom where the sunlight never shines (we need a vampire smiley face), and the light isn’t on all that often either. I’ve got A/C…so this means I can buy to the extent my budget will allow. :d Thank you, Catherine!

          I have never tried Carnal Flower! Argh! I must try it. Therese also. With that description, how could I resist? I’ll bookmark this page so I can come to your description of Cassie after I try it. Num, num, num, num, num. (That’s the equivalent of yum, but what you say if you get too used to speaking to cats. They respond pretty unanimously to that sound.)

          Thanks for letting me know about the two additional FM’s I need to get!

          • erin k. says:

            did you see the “tunite we nom in hell” post on cheezburger today? :d

            i had some 100ml chanel bottles for years that finally went off, but i was keeping them in the bathroom (i didn’t know about heat!)

            i have a new bottle that has an atomizer, and i’ve heard that those can turn faster because they’re more exposed to air. i’m wondering if a) that’s true and b) i need to keep the little screw-top on and only put on the atomizer when i’m about to use it – but that sort of defeats the purpose of having such a pretty bottle. any advice?


          • Debbie says:

            Nope–not even aware of that site. What is it?

            I don’t know about atomizers; someone with more experience needs to speak up. I too think it’s a shame about not being able to look at our beautiful bottles any longer than to spray them.

            So what did you get?

          • erin k. says:

            so sorry! i assumed by your comment that you’ve been looking at lolcats – i know someone else here has mentioned them.

            go to – it’s full of cute kittehs and funny captions. a great way to waste time. :d

            i got a limited edition Aromatics Elixir bottle with flowers molded into the frosted glass bottle and an atomizer. actually, my mom got it for me, isn’t she sweet? and it’s the parfum concentration.


          • Debbie says:

            I will definitely go to that site. Thanks, Erin.

            Your bottle sounds so beautiful!!

        • kathleen says:

          Clearing up that shelf life thing, not so good for me. After my small collection of Chanel’s from the ’80’s did a disappearing act between london and VA, I eased that “punch in the gut” feeling with the fact that they probably had gone off anyway. Now, I’m bummed again. BTW I’m a Parfum de Therese girl, myself.

          • erin k. says:

            i just tried Therese for the first time a couple of days ago – gorgeous! i love the fact that there’s a watery, juicy feel to the fruit without any “spring rain” glade kind of effect. the scent is so vibrant!


        • Debbie says:

          Cassie is incredibly beautiful! This leaves me speechless.

    • Lee says:

      Well I’m glad you felt the lime green freshness, even temporarily. I’m currently debating a FB of Amyitis…

      tut tut to me.

  • Debbie says:

    I would just go with 5:00 Ginger. That’s easy to type and say. Do these people never realize they have an English audience? (Said in my best ethnocentric tone.)

    Are we not (sniffle) having a Perfume Posse discussion and special for March? And not JLo, I hope?

    • kathleen says:

      I, too, am hoping for a Perfume Posse discussion for March. I’ve recently discovered these posts and have already learned so much. I now know that I like incenses. I’m learning to understand what it is that I’m sniffing. Absolutely thrilling to me. And what fun!

      • Debbie says:

        Thrilling? You are SO right! 🙂

        So what’s your favorite incense scent so far?

        • kathleen says:

          I’m liking the Bond No9 Andy Warhol Silver Factory. I’ve also tried the Tauer Incense Extreme. At first all I could smell was black pepper, the smell never changed. The next time I layered it over my donna karan labdanum body creme and it went all warm and lovely. I think I liked the Mathew Williamson Incense but it vanished so quickly I can’t be sure. Would luv to try some real “churchy” scents. Any ideas?

          • erin k. says:

            definitely Avignon. but wasn’t that in the posse sampler, though? if not, it’s 100% catholic church incense to me. love it.


          • kathleen says:

            At the moment the Avignon, CB Fire From Heaven absolut, and Silver Factory are sitting in my shopping cart waiting for my credit card cycle to go over. I mentioned the Tauer Incense earlier. I still had that on when I went into my kickboxing class today and the fragrance only improved with the addtion of Eau de Me.

          • Debbie says:

            No, not really. I was hoping you had ideas for me. 🙂 So far, the only incense scents I’ve tried (to my knowledge) have been the trio from Annick Goutal. Two of them made me borderline nauseous in that they were sweet in a bad way. My skin can sometimes do that to things. However, the third, Amber Fetiche, is delightfully pungent. I really like it. You get the amber, but you also get notes that make you wake up and notice it. For sure.

            Maybe a google on “fragrance reviews church incense” could turn up some good things to read?

          • Lee says:

            Y’all need Encens et Lavande. Perfection in incense terms. There’ Juoza Statkus too – very popular a year or so ago though no-one mentions it now…:-?

          • kathleen says:

            Thanks for that, Lee. I see the Juoza has patch as well. A favorite of mine since I was 16.

          • Debbie says:

            Okay, it’s gone on the to-sample list.

          • kathleen says:

            Debbie, if you click on Perfume Shrine, over to the right on this page under Perfume. There is an interesting Series on Incences. A bit wordy, but informative all the same.

          • Debbie says:

            Thanks! That looks like a great site to spent some time reading.

  • Patty says:

    Well, you know I don’t need more bottles, except I agree on those new releases and so have to have them. Hopefully I’ll have the ginger 5k shadow soon. Who else is despairing at the name? How do you shorten that?

    So happy for you that the VT is at the tippy top of your list!

  • Marsi says:

    Lee, I’d be happy to help you out by taking Voleur de Roses off your hands. Please throw my name in the hat.


  • mel says:

    Hi Lee. I share in the general lust for the new SL, of course, and I wonder if I might have a go at Bois Farine and Arpege pour Homme? Also, I have a decant of Vetiver Tonka on the way, and now I am really salivating for it. Is the mail here yet?!

  • Debbie says:

    “Oh my oh my. Oh My. Oh! My!” May I *please* have your bottle of Bois Farine? [-o< There would even be a little surprise something coming back your way. I need this fragrance, and am not above begging. You see, not only do I love it, but a friend of mine hates any fragrance unless it smells of food. I see her once a week, and I don't wear anything out of respect for her sensibilites. Well, I mean I don't wear any fragrance. :"> Now on to the burning question: 70 bottles? SEVENTY bottles? Okay, if fragrance is only supposed to last one or two years before going stale, either you're (1) wearing a lot of stale fragrances, (2)drowning yourself in them or (3)that time estimate isn't true. Which is it? I have seven and wondered if I was okay. Obviously, that must be ridiculous. Midnight Tryst and Fetish? Aaahh, be sitting down when you try them, dear Lee. Or maybe lying down would be better. 😡 You must report back. Please feel free to email if that's faster. I know you're going to be astounded by Midnight Tryst. As to Fetish, I want to know if it shows up deliciously sexy like it does on Neil's skin or if it disappears as it did on mine. I've put Gigembre on my to-sample list and must wander over to read more about the new Hermes. That lambie is ADORABLE. Lambs and sheep were my biggest joy in visiting Scotland. Just so adorable, all of them. I can't eat lamb now hardly thank to that visit. (Mutton was never an option after the way my mom fixed it.) Well, okay seeing the lambs was fantastic, but so was this delicious oat cake thing I ate somewhere.... Anyway, off to the new Hermes. Remember, I need that Bois Farine. @};-

    • Lee says:

      Well, you’re in with the rest of the crew, and as charmed as I am by your lovely pleading, I remain fiercely objective and impartial o:-)

      70 bottles isn’t too bad compared to lots of fellow addicts, I’m telling you. And I’ve reduced the number of them considerably! And that stuff about them going off is a load of doo-whaddle. 7 is nothing. I remember the days of 7. With some fondness. I could let this habit go completely out of control…

      Will keep you informed of my NM sampling escapades. Like you, I don’t chew on lambs.:d

      70 and proud of it.

      • Debbie says:

        I had no idea so many people would ask for that one. Sigh. Yes, you must remain objective. It’s only right. But, you know, if I have charmed you with my pleading, then I am happy nonetheless. 🙂

        I am so glad to hear that you don’t think they go off that quickly. I have even been reduced to math. “Let’s see. If I use 1 to 3 ml per day, depending on the strenth of it and what I’m doing, and there are 30 to 60 ml in a bottle, then I can buy X number of bottles per year with a rotation of..” Can you see the computer programmer in me coming out? And fragrance is not supposed to be analytical like this. It’s supposed to be about love and passion. Sheesh.

      • Debbie says:

        Lee, when I say Fetish disappear on my skin, I don’t really think it’s disappearing so much as softening. SL’s MKK and MH Rien do the same thing. I get wonderful scents, but they’re definitely soft. I’m amazed when others comment on them. It’s either my skin or olfactory system, right? Because too many other people comment differently.

        • Louise says:

          Hi-Fetish also goes waaay soft on me-I was hoping for more kink, for longer. With Midnight T-do you get a very floral bite far into the drydown?

          • Debbie says:

            No, I don’t get a floral bite in it at all. It is all smooth, deep, dark richness.

            That’s really interesting you get that from in it. The heart is completely floral (rose, narcissus, gardenia), but there aren’t any florals in the base. Hmmm…..

  • Devon says:

    Hi! I’d love to have the L’Artisan Rose Voleur or Bois Farine. Thanks for doing this!

  • Lee says:

    Even if we’re not quite scent twins, we must be taste twins – love lic and ging too!

    I’m like you with the chocolate, and am now scratching my noodle for something where ginger dominates…:-?

  • Judith says:

    Hmmm–now I am addicted to ginger (that and licorice for some reason), but I’m not sure that I love it in perfumes. The only one I can think of offhand is Miller et Bertaux 2, and while I like that, it’s not love. See, I also adore chocolate–but I know I hate to wear it. So I can’t tell. Need to sniff the Serge first (his recent ones haven’t worked for me). The other two seem like surer bets. . .

  • Elle says:

    I don’t need anything right now (although was tempted for a moment by the possibility of a tutu being tossed in :-)), but am definitely looking forward to hearing how this all turns out. Oh, but if you could arrange to send over your spring weather and lack of frosts, would love that! Your garden sounds heavenly. Hope you post some pictures. Last year we got killer frosts for a full week in April that decimated plants all over the state. I learned my lesson about not planting too early and having tons of sheets, burlap, etc. on hand to cover everything. If you ever do need anything you think I might have, please just drop me a line and let me know – am always happy to send things on.

    • Lee says:

      We get the occasional late frost too (even the odd one in May sometimes) but they’re normally very rare. And pathetic. I hope I’m not bringing bad luck this way!

      It sounded like you were offering me burlap, which sounds like a very fun idea!!:)

    • Catherine says:

      Dear Elle–I read about your last April and I immediately think: Are you in Iowa? But, no, I remember you are even farther north. But I sympathize, because the ice encased everything down here within an hour one day. All the jonquils and tulips–fully bloomed–stood within an inch of ice for days and days. Huge treetops broke off. I am hoping we do not get a replay of that this year–for you or for me–for the whole Midwest in general–although I’ve learned that anything is possible weather-wise around here.

  • Louise says:

    I can pratically smell the moist greenness of spring arriving to your neighborhood. Ah, your garden will be splendid! So happy for you after a long winter-you seem quite frisky :d/

    I’m awaiting a clean-it-out moment, but til we get some steady spring weather, I’m still being a little hermit-dousing myself in rich, enrobing scents-Bal a Versailles, Mitsouko, Bois de Copaiba.
    I am crossing all digits, hoping that the new SL is spectacular-I love ginger, but was left flat by all his recent releases. I’m hopeful, too, for the Hermes, being a VT lover.

    I don’t need anything…oh, yes, a hug 🙂 will do!

    • Lee says:

      It also means the pesky weeds are back on the march…

      You can have a hug any darn time you choose, beautiful!@};-

  • MattS says:

    I love this Weird Swap Game; it’s how March and I met and fell in love.:x

    I’d love to try anything you’ve got, with the exception of Voleur de Roses, of which I already have a decant and the Hugo Boss, for obvious reasons:d So if there’s another bottle that goes unclaimed, I’ll give it a happy home and send you some fun in return. I’ve got some Vierges et Toreros that’s just waiting for you to sniff it. I love the stuff and was completely caught off guard by it, considering the lack of love online for Etat Libre D’Orange. A little bit leather…a little bit skank…can’t go wrong.

    I love the picture. Instant smiles, first thing this morning. Daffodils are the best.

    • Lee says:

      I’ve put you in for all except the two you mention – which means, currently, you’re bound to win something – or some things…

      What on earth do you mean about HB? :d The temerity they show in calling one of their products Soul… Ha!

      I loved reading about the exchange stuff with March, of course…

  • Alica says:

    Hi Lee, I would deadly like Jo Malone Amber et Lavender, if I had a chance. Thanks 🙂

  • Gina says:

    I am droooooooling over the new Serge, just because of the name. And I’m drooling over what’s happening in your garden right now. In Los Angeles, we don’t get such intense reminders of seasons changing, and I miss that.

    Ellena’s new Jardin! havetohavetohaveto haveeeeeeeee. Right when I swore I’d lay off the spending…oh damn.

    I’m curious about the Jo Malone Amber and Lavender…and I always loved Voleur de Roses. I know I was only supposed to pick one, bad bad bad perfume junkie. I’ll find you something very nice in return, if you tell me some things you love, perfume related and otherwise. It would be fun.

    I LOVE Vetiver Tonka, I love my bottle, I’m so happy you’re going to get that one. It’s one of my favorites. In fact, I will wear it tomorrow.

  • Gail S says:

    Well, heck, add me to the ever-growing list for Bois Farine :d I’m glad to see we have the same major lemmings. Must try both the new SL and the Hermes. And I’m also extremely fond of Vetiver Tonka myself. I’d say it’s my second favorite after Vero Profumo Onda.

    Thanks for offering up portions of your collection!

    • Lee says:

      The lemmings have woken up after quite a slumber, haven’t they? You’re in for the draw, with pleasure.

  • Sue says:

    Hi Lee,

    I, too, am a fellow ginger nut and had an almost identical reaction to the Hermes announcement. You probably heard my *squee* echo through the force. 😉 I am looking forward to hearing your thoughts on both 5 O’Clock and Apres La Mousson.

    I’d love to be entered for the Voleur de Roses (love plum), Bois Farine, and Habit Rouge and would equally enjoy finding some goodies to send you in return.

    Thanks for the post and exchange giveaway!

  • 2scents says:

    I love ginger preserves/marmalade! And crystallised ginger in my desk… And Vetiver Tonka–brilliant. And I am a Chanel girl who awaits the sycomore. (Listing now) And I adore sandalwood, and some darker, deeper roses, so put me in on the Bois Farine & Voleur des Roses, been meaning to try both. And I love Spring! It does wonders for my energy level (practically skipping along this eve…) I can envision a ginger themed package headed your way should I be so lucky as to win the draw…

  • Maria says:

    Oh, Lee, how I miss those charmers, the species tulips! A lot don’t do well in our mild winters. They grew very well in Maine. (I don’t miss much else about Maine.) The upcoming Serge and Hermes do sound potentially wonderful, in spite of one weird name.

    I have been learning how to decant. I’m having one technical problem that I e-mailed Patty the Wise about tonight. After that, there will be packages. Wheee! I have an interest in Habit Rouge, but my sending you something is in NO WAY dependent on an exchange. I already have your list ready. 😡

    • tmp00 says:

      what the difficulty? Just curious,,,

      • Maria says:

        Tom, most species tulips need a cold winter in order to bloom. They’re wildflowers, so they need conditions that more closely resemble their natural habitat’s, as Lee pointed out.

        I hope you’re going to be able to go to Luckyscent on 29 March to see Andy Tauer.

    • Lee says:

      Well, I lose some of my speices tulips too cos the winters are too mild here. I guess they like that high altitude sense of cold dry winters and hot balmy summers. Still, a few do very well and multiply up nicely.

      You’re in for the HR nonetheless, and Iim excited for the package that will arrive sometime!:x

  • Theresa says:

    I am really excited to try both the Lutens-yum ginger, and the Hermes. Please put me down for either Voleur de Roses or Bois Farine and you’ll get something fun and/or interesting back! Thanks.

    • Lee says:

      Theresa, you’re in the draw!:d

      Ginger and monsoon rain. Still too flighty when I think about that.

  • Roland says:

    Hi. I’m new. It takes this to draw me out of my shell? Shame on me. 😉

    I’ve actually been reading your blog for quite a while now, the love of my life turned me on to the world of scents, and your site, about 9 months ago. I will never be able to thank her enough.

    I wish I had so many scents that I had to give some away to make room. Although, I have given a few tiny samples away to a few friends who I new would never start without that little push.

    Thanks for all the great reviews and fantastic discussions. And, if you draw me out of that hat, I’d love to try Guerlain Habit Rouge, but I don’t have the rear for that tutu. Or do I?

    Thanks again,


    • Roland says:

      I can’t believe I spelled “knew” wrong in my first contact.

      • erin k. says:

        you misspeller! now we’ll have to shoot you. :d

        i’m fairly new, and everyone’s been wonderful to me. glad you decided to de-lurk. i figure if you’re going for a Guerlain, you’ve got to be ok.

        i can’t find a “waving hello” emoticon, so … here’s a cool guy with sunglasses. b-)


    • Lee says:

      Seeing as you’re new, I’ll be polite and avoid commenting on your rear, as much as I’d like to…:”>

      Great to know you’re out there roland, and all of us here love it when someone shows their face. Keep on commenting!

      You’re in.

  • CindyN says:

    Great post! I’d like to be put in the hat or vessel for Voleur de Roses, Plz. Tink ewe

  • sissyLA says:

    Oooo, can I put my name in the Bois Farine hat?

  • erin k. says:

    you are such a SWEETHEART! i would love to give your Ungaro III a good home. the basenotes comments on it are hilarious: “dracula’s coffin,” an “italian graveyard,” and my favorite, “the women will fall to their knees.” just what i need. 😉

    and rose, no less. i’m on a big rose kick right now. in fact, right now i have on Aromatics Elixir, Shiseido White Rose and SIP Black Rosette.

    also, it’s interesting that you mention Vetiver Tonka, cause i tried that one on earlier today for the first time, and it really blew me away. i wasn’t expecting to like it, i just thought it’d be a learning experience (it’s JCE, it’s Hermes, it’s vetiver!). but i love it! the only other Ellena scent i’ve smelled is Ambre Narguile, but it and VT have this amazing jeweled quality – a clarity and a glow about them. as you can see, i’ve been having a Really Big Perfume Day. 🙂

    (you made me google “allium” – what a pretty flower!)


    • MattS says:

      Erin, for a goth girl on a rose kick, you need to try Voleur de Roses. It’s one of the most gothic scents I’ve smelled; it smells like Siouxsie, vampires, and decay. To me anyway. I usually wear it at home. In October.8-x

      • erin k. says:

        yes, it’s on my gigantic “to try” list, it got kicked off on this last sample order by the “high end leather sampler pack.” next time …

        back at ya: 8-x

    • Lee says:

      VT is awesome, isn’t it? Glad you like the alliums. The Ungaro is all yours – expect some mail…

  • Jenny says:

    I too am so eager to try those three releases. I can’t decide which I am more excited about, the Hermes or the Serge, but I feel like both could be amazing.

    Also, I would love to enter for the Bois Farine; it’s one of my absolute favorites.


  • Billy D says:

    Have you been lucky enough to be privy to Sycomore at all? I’m simply dyyying to know how it smells. Do you think Kaiser Karl will be giving out samples again on Thursday (A/H 2009 Chanel RTW show, which always has a few men’s pieces, since he loves Brad Koening so)?

    I too am a huge fan of ginger, at least in theory. I put it on so much when cooking, and I do enjoy the raw smell. I, alas, do not have your sweet-killing skin (quite the opposite, actually), so it may be too much for me, but thankfully I’ll get to find out since it’s an export! yay

    Vetiver Tonka is a vague memory–I’ll have to revisit. And I never knew you were a Black Orchid girl, but now that I do know, I find you so much more alluring–not that you weren’t quite heavy-lidded in my head already.

    What the hell, put me down for Bois Farine.

    • erin k. says:

      LOL – i’m a Black Orchid girl, too! /:)


    • Lee says:

      No sniff of the Sycomore at all, sorry W! Now, I’m not a BO ‘person’ at all really, though I am a sucker for a hint of vegetal decay…

      As for your sweet amplifying skin – youth, I tell you, youth… Moisturiser used to slick off me like an oil spill clagging on a beach – now I suck it up like drops of rain in the desert… Still got that freaking T-zone though. What exactly is that all about?

      • Lee says:

        Oh, and you’re down for BF.

        • Billy D says:

          Moisturizer and I are not friends. I hate feeling greasy, and my skin never gets dry like you Anglos. The BF is of mainly Scottish blood, so he has that delicate, dry thing going on, whereas I’m mostly Italian. I’ve got swarthy down pat (and yet still, French Lover doesn’t work for me 😉

          Oh, and please shoot me an e-mail if you would still like to write something for me!! My eternal gratitude is yours, along with maybe a bottle of something you can only get in the states?

          • Lee says:

            I’m not very Anglo to be honest. Never had any dry skin til recently. My face is still slicky. It’s age. I thought to myself ‘I’ll never need to moisturise’ but oh I was wrong. I rarely have to moisturise my face though (cept for the patch between my swarthy looking eyebrows). Expect an email today or tomorrow.

          • Billy D says:

            Don’t ruin my fantasy! I have a very Anglo vision of you–three piece suits, using “bugger” as an interjection, quoting Tennyson, all while sipping tea (royal doulton china, of course).

          • Louise says:

            Ah, the reality is far better than your fantasy /:)

          • MarkDavid says:

            Ah, the never-ending struggle for moisture neutrality. Im either an oil slick or the Namib desert. Ive tried everything on the market. Ive found what works best now, depending on my skin’s condition – I either use Proactiv Green tea Moisturizer, Creme de La Mer, or Clarins Oil-Control serum.

          • erin k. says:

            i have two sets of skin care products, one for summer and one for winter. and in the in-between seeasons – well, it gets kind of weird. /:)


          • Billy D says:

            I have found that the Chanel T-mat stuff works really well, but it’s also quite expensive. Let’s not even talk about Creme de la Mer, Mr. David.

            I’m really excited to try the Dior Homme skincare line that Hedi created right before he left. Apparently, it’s only available in France, but I’ve seen it on ebay. Maybe when I find someone to buy me my Iris Silver Mist bell jar, I can get them to pick one of those up as well.

          • Lee says:

            I use E45 cream. So sue me.

          • Billy D says:

            Oh, and you can take me out of the running for the Bois Farine. I see that there are a lot of people who already really love it, so I’d rather they have a shot.

          • MarkDavid says:

            I’ll have to obtain a sample of the Chanel. I use their makeup for theatre and its really great. I dont use it for extended runs or for special effect make-up – just when I do a standard stage face. My skin responds terribly to the whole make-up experience but I’ve found Chanel to be the least disrupting. I dont enjoy wearing it – I immediately feel “clogged.” But if I must – at least its Chanel.

            Alas, yes. The way I figure – if I can drop 150 on a bottle of perfume that I will not use everyday – I can certainly buy La Mer which will last me a few months b/c a little goes a long way. I use their lip balm and their body lotion too. The Body Lotion is the best product in the world. I can’t stop touching myself when I use it. Its so powerful – I only use it every 4 days.

          • Arwen says:

            Have you tried the new Chanel makeup?
            I got a paper in the mail for a free sample.
            I may stop by my local Macy’s for my sample.

            I love Chanel makeup. I have very sensitive skin and it is just perfect.

            I also just discovered the Bobby Brown makeup in a tube. A SA applied some on my face the other day at Nordstrom and when I came out to the light it looked very natural.

  • perfumequeen says:

    OOOH! fun! I was just thinking about setting up an island for misfits for unloved decants on my site. This is more fun. Can you put me in ffor the amber and lavender and/or Habit Rouge? pretty please? I can send great texas things ….

  • elyse says:

    write me down for Bois Farine, please. If I win I’ll have to find something for you…

  • tmp00 says:

    I am panting to try the new Serge as well and pea-green with envy that you got to! Why haven’t I been sent a sample?!?! Don’t they know that I am a VERY IMPORTANT BLOGGER! Who lives in BEVERLY FREAKING HILLS!?!? Who in no way is SERIOUSLY DELUDED?!?!

    Well, the one of the above is true at least.. :”>

    Wow- I am really not in any of you guys league bottle-wise. I think I am at 40 and I feel that’s waaay to much. Not that I’m going to give any away or nuttin..

    • erin k. says:

      40 is the new 30, right – so that means you can get 10 more bottles and it’ll still be OK!

      you Very Important Blogger, you! 😡


    • Lee says:

      I often have a waaay too much feeling. But that’s the freaky sandal-wearing lentil munching dude who’s there inside me talking…He often gets ignored.

      Now, I think you need to contact the Salons Shiseido post-haste and let them know who exactly you are, buddy!:d