Unfinished business: I did five minutes of research on Tasha Tudor after yesterday’s post and came up with the family website, which is worth a look if the topic has piqued your interest at all. It’s got photos and text and illustrations and depending on your perspective is either charming or creepy — or (for me, anyway) a little of both. Here’s an excerpt from the family biography section: “Marjorie Tudor is Tasha Tudor´s daughter-in-law, having married Tasha´s elder son, Seth. She has four children who grew up at her feet as she carved wooden pieces for the marionettes and sewed frocks for the lady dolls.” Also the family business seems to be Seth, Marjorie, and their various children/grandchildren — no mention in the company section of the other three children, I think another son and two daughters.
Okay, today’s post. After complaining for years about how awful the store-bought tomatoes are, I got busy this spring and planted some of my own, having been told by a gardening friend that all I need is sun, heat and a lot of water. I planted them in barrels in my driveway, far away from my magnificent but plant-killing black walnut trees. So far they´re looking pretty awesome — huge with lots of green fruit. I have a cherry tomato, an early ripener, and
All of this crossed my mind when I ran across Donna Karan´s DKNY Women (in the long, prism-shaped bottle rather than the black and gold robo-duck). I smelled it a year or two ago in some duty-free, which is the only place I´ve ever seen it, and was immediately impressed by its … well, what the heck is that weird smell?
According to Basenotes, the 1999 fragrance “uses headspace technology to capture the scent of freshly laundered t-shirts and wet cobblestones. The bottle is designed to echo skyscrapers.” I´m sure there´s a great story out there from the DKNY marketing machine explaining Donna´s inspiration, etc., but I´m too lazy to look. Instead let´s gaze in wonder at the notes:
blood orange, chilled vodka, tomato leaf, waterlilies, green coral orchids, daffodils, freshly laundered t-shirt, wet cobblestones, white birch, tulip tree bark.
Okay, I know some of you are a little jaded about the lists of notes, what with all the molten rivers of wood and living black orchid and all the rest of that bs. But I can´t help it; I love that list. La Donna rocking the wet cobblestones back in ´99! Also, look at what it doesn´t contain: pink pepper, white/pink musk, and/or frozen litchi (and thank you, Jesus).
I cracked up reading the comments on Basenotes, because a number of folks were complaining (?), this fragrance is not sexy! Well, they´re right. If you want to bring a man to his knees, pick something else. However, I remain entranced by DKNY Women´s almost CdG-esque peculiarity. It´s also a great fragrance for summer – it´s weird, but it´s wearably, enjoyably weird, like CdG´s inky number 2.
I never know what I´m going to get first with DKNY Women – sometimes it´s all citrusy, and sometimes it opens with the laundry, but always with the tomato leaf, and the combined smell is so peculiarly compelling I can´t stop sniffing it. DK´s tee shirt is nothing like, say, Clean Laundry – this isn´t a soft, musky, girly Tide smell. It´s a tee shirt in the rain, left hanging on the branch of a tree with something sharp and herbal growing nearby. In any case, the detergent morphs pretty quickly into a bitter, bark-y floral. The whole thing is pungent and peculiar, and delightful in the heat. This scent contains so many familiar things (once you know what you´re looking for) but juxtaposes them so brilliantly I´m charmed. It´s like a scent tape you´d give to a Martian – here are some random all-American smells, my little green friend!
How much this would appeal to you would probably depend on your tolerance for quirky scents, and whether or not your nose is overwhelmed with a tidal wave of Tide (mine is not, and I hate laundry scents). I like its resolutely non-perfume-y smell, like I´d picked tomatoes and some herbs from my garden and was wearing all the evidence on my rainy-day walk in the woods, smiling to myself.
Brandywine tomatoes: ugly, but good eatin’ — tradewindsfruit.com