My Christmas Perfumes


Hey, it’s almost Christmas, and this is a cat ornament!!!   My son’s cat, Lynus, who is “temporarily” staying through winter break thinks the Christmas tree is lots and lot sof fun.  The second picture is my new little bulldog, Vinnie, who comes home to live with us in January. He’s the one at the bottom of the picture, not facing the camera

I thought about reviewing some Soivohle scents today – there are several that I’m falling in love with, it’s a great line – and then I decided no, not this week. 

I do need to give the winners of the drawing for the Breath of God samples:  Musette, cataleptix (wow, I need to know about that name), Natalie, fountaingirl and Rachaelg.  Just click on Contact us on the left and let me know your address and real name, and I’ll ship you a sample! 

What I really Want is to send out my Christmas/Holiday wishes from my house to all of yours.  Yes, yes, I know we don’t all celebrate Christmas, but the sentiment is for love and joy for each of you, no matter what holidays you celebrate or don’t celebrate.

We spend so much time together – we writing, you reading and commenting – and it feels very much like a very weird family, and my Christmas is not the same without all of my family.  Most of us don’t know each other very well or even at all, but we find this little hole in the internets to relax and talk about something frivolous that winds up revealing a much larger part of who we are.

This year Christmas is pretty quiet and peaceful.  Harry is home on winter break from college, so I’m pretending like I’m on winter break too and running out to movies (Doubt is excellent) and coaxing him and Alex into going to see the Nutcracker.  I’m hoping the weather stays good so my mom can travel out and join us.  This is the week I go full-tilt into my winter Caron obsession.  Poivre and Coup de Fouet get maximum play, though I try to hold Nuit de Noel in reserve for Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. 

We picked up the prime rib tonight from the butcher, along with oxtail, since I’m planning on showing off my brand spanking new cooking skills and making an oxtail stew.  Somehow I managed to neglect my boys’ education and they never saw even one movie in the Godfather series.  We’re fixing that this Christmas and watching all three in the Coppola special edition.  How could that have happened?  It’s only one of my top five films.

Speaking of films, there’s more arm twisting going on this week as I also need to see that Benajmin Button thing, Marley & Me, Revolutionary Road, The Wrestler (anyone seen this yet? The early reviews and trailer look amazing), The Reader, and a couple of others.  Do you know I’ve never gone to a movie by myself? I think I need to do that.

I’m bummed that my yoga studio is closed on Christmas Day, though I can’t blame them, but it’s probably the one day I most need to start out in a great place.  Yoga has been a weird great thing for me. I feel like one of those bobble dolls.  As long as I keep yoga’ing up, no stress or anger or upset really gets to me, I just bob over and then quickly recover my balance again. Is it like that for everyone?  I hope it is. 

That’s a little window into my world this year.  I want to give you all my heartfelt gratitude that you spend a little bit of your lives with us. We are enriched in no small way by what you share.  So what perfume are you wearing for the holidays and/or what’s your plans for your winter break?


  • zara says:

    aaah yoga, have to roll out my mat again and start practising, my back has been hurting so much recently without it. and yoga always helps!
    happy holidays to every PP member out there.
    there’s a question that’s been bugging me, patty, march, lee, do your family members ever take the chances and buy you guys perfume for Christmas? i mean, considering the experience, overview in niche and overall and refined taste, it must be a hell of a task to surprise you…

  • sparkys nemesis says:

    Merry Christmas, Patty…to you and your family. I, too, do the movies alone at times; with friends or with hubby other times. This’ll be a marathon week for me with flicks. Sooo many to choose from. And your bulldog pup looks just like my grandpuppy, Marley, who is a bea-bull; part beagle/part bulldog. Anyway, good luck with the oxtail stew. karen b

  • Mrs. Honey says:

    Nuit de Noel, because I just can’t resist seeing if it really fits for Christmas Eve.

  • Happy Christmas your and Posse’s team and a most lovely new year ahead! I will be decked out in vintage Parure which goes well with the preparations and the food.
    (your cat on the tree is priceless!:x )

  • Millicent says:

    Thank you from another big fan! I’ve really enjoyed reading all of you this past year. We’re celebrating our first Christmas in Malaysia by spending a few days in Melaka, formerly known as Malacca and a major hub of the spice route back in the day. So, I’m all up in my Jaisalmer in honor of the spices.

  • mollypenny says:

    Happy Holidays to you too, Patty! And thank you for this blog. I love reading, sharing and laughing with you and the gang. I really need to get a sample of Nuit de Noel according to the love it’s receiving here. I’ll have to move it to the top of the list. But you did just remind me about my Caron Tabac Blond Sample. That would be lovely for the Holidays! I put on some Ambre Narguile today but it was cloying. It’s a touchy one for me. I need to refrain from snorting my wrist until it mellows a bit. Must learn patience!
    Enjoy all your movies. And please do post more pics when you get Vinnie! NOTHING is more adorable than a puppy:)

  • lucy says:

    Kitty in a tree! Lynus really owns that branch. Vinnie is adorable. Thanks for posting the pictures. Poivre, Tea for Two, and L’Heure Bleue are getting a workout these days.

    Wishing everyone happy holidays and a peaceful new year!

  • karin says:

    I’ve been so busy that I haven’t even thought about what perfumes to wear on Christmas! Alas, I have no Carons. In fact, I don’t think I’ve ever even tried any Carons. Shame on me! Must put this on my New Year’s resolution lists!!! As to your bulldog – ADORABLE!!! Oh puppies are just too cute, aren’t they? Have a wonderful Christmas, Patty, and thanks so much for your blog faithfulness. March and Lee, too! Love you guys.

  • Rappleyea says:

    I couldn’t believe it when I saw the kitten in the tree pix – I have one that looks exactly like that, about six months old now. Along with another cat who is about a year old, they were both rescued from the Humane Society this past summer. And your picture is the exact reason why I DON’T have a tree this year! My two are holy terrors, but I love them anyway!

    Wonderful post, and my best wishes for a holiday and new year filled with love, joy and peace for you and yours. A huge thank you to all at the Posse for all that you all do.

    Oh yes, perfume….I can’t seem to get away from Spiritueuse Double Vanille so I imagine that will be my pick for Christmas.

  • Kathryn says:

    Your kitten and puppy pictures are adorable. They are making me wistful for the lost youth of my two old tomcats. I used to get irritated when they would get into the Christmas tree batting the ornaments around and occasionally smashing one. One memorable year they managed to topple the tree. Now they are so old that I just wish they could still jump that high! But they seem pretty happy with the warmth coming from the wood stove and all the good smells in the kitchen. There is a lot to be said for the calm delights of advancing age.

    The foot of snow we got in this part of Maine is just beautiful, pristine and white. It is supposed to get warmer tomorrow, so I’m hoping the snow will get sticky enough to make a snowman on the lawn before friends and relatives come for Christmas Eve. DD is arriving from NYC and it will be wonderful to see her.

    I just got three new vials from CB I Hate Perfume: Gingerbread, M#3 November, and Wallking in the Air. I thought at first I might wear Gingerbread for the holiday and may still. It smells delicious and keeps changing in interesting ways. But it is the snow scent, Walking in the Air, that is capturing my heart. You might think with all the snow here that I wouldn’t need to smell any more, but Walking in the Air actually has the effect of making me notice how wonderful the air is outside and riffing off that. I hope everyone finds his or her perfect scent and has a very happy holiday!

  • Natalie says:

    I’m all verklempt at winning a sample — you really like me! — amid what has so far been a really rough X-mas season for me. Thanks a zillion for brightening my day today and throughout the year.

    As for holiday perfume choices, I’ve had a dreadful sinus infection for the past week and can neither smell nor taste a damn thing! Takes so much of the joy out of life… So I haven’t even bothered to wear anything lately — why waste it on other people if I can’t enjoy it myself?! — but am hoping to get back to L’Air du Desert Marocain, Black Tourmaline, and Bandit (that last one is my f-you scent for dealing with family) someday soon.

    Oh, and I love the kitty/puppy photos! My cat would bring the whole tree crashing down if he tried a stunt like that…

    • Natalie says:

      Oops, there were supposed to be little ((sniff sniffs)) around the “you really like me” à la Sally Field!

  • Shelley says:

    Hey! Speaking of things merry and happy…Congratulations on your Fragrantica blog award! I’d be here every day without it anyway, but recognition is nice. :d/ <:-p @};-@};-@};-

  • Amarie says:

    Seasons greetings.
    Thank-you for all your lovely reads through the year – it really is so like an odd family sharing when people post and I have enjoyed being part of it.
    Yoga: not something I have ever tried, strangely enough, but you have just convinced me that it might be my 2009 exploration. I suffer badly:( from migraines and keeping stress levels down is one of the supremely important things in my life.
    Perfumes I am currently doing are newly aquired vintage Lanvin Rumeur (oh bliss!) and Crescendo, with a vintage My Sin and Pretexte and a boxset of Judith Muller under the tree.:”>
    Can’t wait for tomorrow.:x

  • moi says:

    Thank YOU for enriching our lives with your posts! This site has contributed immeasurably to my enjoyment of perfume.

    Which means, instead of two years ago when I would have just thrown on a couple of spritzes of whatever? THIS season, I have over a dozen bottles and scores of samples from which to choose. This week, I’m alternating between Ambre Narguile, Dune, and vintage Emeraude.

    Merry, merry and happy, happy to you and yours!

  • Pantera Lilly says:

    What a cute little kitty in the tree! And that little Vinnie is too cute for words. I believe one of the owners of Luckyscent (the cult perfume retailers) has a pug named Vinnie Bag o Donuts (how’s that for a name). Thanks for sharing your thoughts and critiques with us, I enjoy this part of my day when I can read up on my favorite obsession. My fragrance for these holidays will probably be Serge Lutens’ Tubereuse Criminelle and Caron’s Tubereuse perfume. Have a Merry Christmas with your loved ones.

  • Aparatchick says:

    First, Lynus is a cutie, and I don’t just say that because he looks just like my Moose. BTW, if you name your cats Moose and Squirrel, be prepared for a really long pause in the conversation when you call to book a nail trim appointment the vet’s staff thinks you mean an actual Moose and Squirrel.

    Yes, yoga is the great de-stressor in my life. No idea why it works like that for me, but it does.

    And you should try going to a movie by yourself. I’ve been doing it for years, since the otherwise-wonderful husband doesn’t like a lot of the same movies I like.

    Perfume for Christmas Eve will be Avignon – perfect for midnight Mass.

  • violetnoir says:

    Oh my goodness, Patty, those babies are adorable! What a wonderful and festive way to kick off 2009 with a new puppy. I am so happy for you! Do you have a name for your baby?

    That’s right: This is your Caron week! Enjoy and indulge in all that Caron richness.

    I missed yoga today, too, so I did some stretches to work out the kinks in my lower right back. Yoga really is a miracle for us older, I mean mature and foxy, ladies. 😉

    The best to you and your family this Christmas, darling.


  • sara says:

    Merry Christmas Patty! My Christmas season perfumes are: Sacrebleu, Zagorsk, and Coco. I HIGHLY recommend The Wrestler–I saw it last week in NYC. Sludog Millionaire is also terrific! Cheers, Sara

  • helenviolette says:

    Patty, that pup is an o:-). V and I will be seeing Slumdog Millionaire manana and Benjamin Button the following day. I love to see movies by myself (and I usually sneak off at least once a year for a me day- shop, eat, see a movie- and I dont even tell anyone about it).

    Merry Christmas to all and Happy Holidays!

  • mi-cuit says:

    Merry Christmas, Patty!
    I bought Sables unsniffed for the holiday. That has not turned out so well… instead of maple syrup, I get… well, I’m not sure WHAT I get, but it’s not a happy thing. I guess I’ll be sticking with L’Heure Bleue this holiday season.
    On the bright side, my very first bell jar may be on its way to me. A friend of mine is in Paris and well, fingers crossed. Hopefully, I’ll be able to ring in the New Year in Muscs Koublai Khan glory.

  • Francesca says:

    Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, Happy Solstice, Happy Kwanzaa and a happy, fragrant new year to all. This site gives me so much pleasure, and thank you for that.

    Christmas plans: I have a lot of time off, am going later today to iglooland (ie mountaintop house in CT) til Jan 5 so I’m figuring out what to cook (I think a duck, shallot, and turnip casserole for Christmas) and what jewelry (vintage/antique Mexican silver) and fragrance to pack. Micallef White Aoud is piping up “take meeeee” so I’ll have to find my tiny sample. I think it’s going to be a vanilla and incense kind of holiday for me.

    We’re also getting together with friends a few times, and I hope to put in some good hours of piano practice.

    The Godfather is just so fantastic. I think Part II is my favorite of the trilogy (young DeNiro!). I’ve been watching part i on my iPhone, which is a lot of fun. Watching on a tiny, crystal-clear screen somehow concentrates the action.

    Patty, I love the pet photos too. That puppy is beyond adorable. We saw a 4 month old bulldog the other night–I don’t think there’s anything cuter (good thing my little Japanese Chin guys can’t read this).

    Very best wishes to all.(*)

  • aelily says:

    The photos are so CUTE! Wonderfully sweet post Patty. My Christmas perfumes have all been spicy and/or gourmand this year. I must feel the need for comfort scents. I pulled out my sample of Nuit de Noel and gave it another try again this year, but while the opening is great, it quickly disappears into a powder bomb on me. Sigh. Haven’t decided what I will wear tomorrow for Eve Mass…maybe Le Labo Poivre…
    Happy Yule to all!

  • Divalano says:

    Oxtail stew? *swoon* I used to work with a Jamaican lady who made oxtails to die for, never would share the recipe beyond “oh, some thyme, some carrots, cook em down good”. Someday maybe you’ll post your recipe?

    My holidays … there will be wearing of Cuir Beluga & probably a bit of Cuir Ambre. Maybe some Note Vanilee. If I get less cranky, perhaps Bois D’Armenie. B D’A is a bit to edgey on me to wear when I’m anything less than buoyant. Plans … well, I do have 2 days of work. Besides that, I predict lolling about, cooking things, maybe some year end cleaning, organizing & neatening. Some visiting with friends, some shopping. Aside from Xmas with my family & a New Year’s Day dinner with friends, mostly nothing that requires pre-planning.

  • Veronica says:

    I’m just about to finish reading The Godfather. I wanted to read the book before I see all the Godfather movies again. It’s fantastic!
    I love going to the movies alone, but almost never get a chance – if there’s something good out, my husband’s willing to go anytime,in any condition, anywhere at all:) So it’s something I kind of wish I could do.
    Yes, Carons are out in full force these days – Alpona, Parfum Sacre, Narcisse Blanc, Montaigne. Ava Luxe Palisander and Shambhala Tibet. Trusted Black Cashmere is never too far away. Liz Zorn Sinti and Grand Canyon are all about comfort and joy for me… Oudhs rock in the cold – Arabian Oud Rahil and Agarscents Prince Bandhar and Mukhaat Myanmar are amazing.
    Wishing everyone peaceful and happy time these Holidays!

  • smy says:

    Love the cat ornament!

    Some of my favorite scents for this holiday season are ones that I was introduced to through the Posse Scent Club! I love Winter Delice, Sushi Imperiale, and Fendi Theorema. Any chance you’d bring back the Posse Scent Club ? : )

    • aelily says:

      Oh I second that! I miss the scent club! I might have to go with Theorema for the holiday, I forget how much I love it.

  • Shelley says:

    Your cat-in-the-tree picture had me cracking up from first espying. Been there, done that…right down to the blasted feline then ever so cutely becoming suddenly aware that, hey, I might be in a predicament here…

    Holiday frags? Well, well, I have to confess, this is my first holiday as a full out (and fully out) perfume person [“Hi, Shelley”], so I’m kind of developing what might be a “regular” line up. I will say that I saved my little sample of Nuit de Noel from ChiCocoa just for this time, even though I was aware that strictly speaking it does not have to be “Christmas.” I am enjoying it, though, and can see how it becomes a holiday thang for folks…especially here in the colder climes.

    Otherwise, I am testing some, rotating in those I’d like in this weather anyway. Weather scents: Black Cashmere, Chergui, some leathers (eg, L’Ombre Fauve). I even like certain roses right now, and I’m not a rose nut; there’s something about the cold and the snow that plays well against them, especially if they’re mixed with wood. Otherwise, I’m on an academic calendar, and am all about using this time to explore.

    Oh! Explorations have led to one that does say the season pretty well to me…Ambre Narguile. Perhaps that’s because my youth involved lots of baking as holiday activity.

  • Melissa says:

    Lovely post and Happy Holidays, Hanukkah, Christmas etc back to you too! Thanks for posting the list of movies-I can probably get my husband and son to go with me to one or two of them. As for fragrances, well, I’m working for a day or two more, but L’Heure Bleue parfum and the Carons were out last weekend and Barbara Bui was featured at work. It’s Le Labo Poivre today I think. And Musc Ravageur has been in rotation along with La Nuit for those evenings when I want a bit of ummm, bad girl, rather than comfort.

  • March says:

    I love your cat ornament! It looks so lifelike! 😉 How do you get it to stay on the branch like that? 😕

    Your Christmas sounds quiet and lovely. Joining the chorus here; I go to movies all the time by myself. Like Rosarita my husband and I have different tastes, and at some pt years ago I got tired of arm twisting/scheduling/begging him or a friend to go with me. So … if it’s something I really want to see in a theater as opposed to waiting to Netflix it, I just go. The only bullying I do with the girls is to take them to movies they’d not see on their own with their friends. I remember that as a distinct pleasure with my parents who were always dragging us to Fellini films. Even the really weird ones they don’t complain about.

    Anyway, have a lovely Caron week. Can’t wait to meet the new puppy!

    • March says:

      PS I know it’s not the same, but can you Wii Fit it for the yoga on Christmas Day?

      • Shelley says:

        Yeah, what March said…or maybe a nice Rodney Yee dvd under the tree? Send everybody out to shovel or something, and enjoy all the way through savasna.

        • Musette says:

          Or maybe just Rodney Yee under the tree! The pup is adorable and he is already such a Vinnie!

          I love going to the movies alone. My first ‘alone’ movie was Close Encounters and I remember worrying so much about what ‘everyone’ thought about me being alone. Of course, once the film started it was moot. We were all alone and all together. Weirdly enough I just pulled that film (the director’s cut) out of the library for hollerday viewing.

          Nose suffering from dry heat. I’m hoping it will be back in full working order by the time BOG gets here. So stoked! Thank you!

          Nuit de Noel for the Eve and I think Ava Luxe Film Noir for Christmas Day – or else maybe Liz Zorn’s Ankhara.

          Can’t wait to read your Zorn/Soivohle review. I, too, am falling in love with several.

          Your holidays sound wonderful – enjoy them and relax! Your movie list sounds awesome. I read Reservation Road when it was first published – harrowing novel. My taste in films is a bit fluffy these days – my stress levels are too high for too much realism. My pick for the theatre is Keanu in The Day the Earth Stood Still – if he screws up Michael Rennie’s legacy I will smack him so hard! The rest I went back in time for: Silk Stockings, How to Marry a Millionaire. That oughta help with the eyebrow quest.

          xoxoxo and Best Christmas Wishes!!!


  • rosarita says:

    Lovely post, P, and the animals are soooo cute. I love going to the movies by myself. My husband and I have different tastes, and when our daughter was tiny, our big splurge was to get a babysitter once a month, go to the Dollar theater and watch separate films, then meet up for ice cream. That Benjamin Button thing looks really good. I have the never ending virus/sinus infection from hell, so I’m deep into comfort scents for my two week vacation (nose works ok, it’s the ear/throat connection that’s broken): Les Nereides Patchouli Antique, Barbara Bui, Parfum Sacre, and a recently re discovered Cartier Le Basier Dragon. I hated to Cartier first time I tried it, but found a decant while searching for something else, and I’m kind of loving it. All the best to everyone >:d<

  • carlene says:

    OMG, the pup is beautiful! I haven’t even read your post yet, but I needed to comment immediately on the babydog. His coloring is beautiful, I’ll bet you can’t wait. Congratulations!!!

  • Molly says:

    Hi Patty,
    I rarely comment, but this is an especially nice post! I love the pics of the cat and your new puppy, and the way you talk about yoga. Yoga does that for me too. I haven’t done yoga in a long time, and you reminded me that it’s something I enjoy and I should get back into. I have been doing pilates and that gives me a similar feeling, but not quite the same.
    Anyway, my Christmas-time perfumes are Opium, Louve, Black Cashmere, Avignon and Sacrebleu. But I wear those at other times of the year, too.
    Merry Christmas, Happy New Year’s, Happy Holidays!

  • MattS says:

    It’s funny you mention going to movies by yourself. I used to do it all the time and I loved it. The town I used to live in had a former movie theater from the forties that had been completely restored to its full glory and they should lots of foreign and art films, classic and cult movies. Every Friday I got off of work early, while all my friends were still at work or school. It became my Friday tradition to go to the one o’clock show by myself. I saw a lot of great movies there, but one of my favorite experiences was when it was just me and a group of retirees from a nearby assisted living facility watching Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers. They seemed to have such a wonderful time and I felt like I got to share their memories and experience. I haven’t been to a movie alone in years and that bothers me, because there’s always something I want to see. It almost seems like the older I get, the less self-assured I become or the more concerned with what people think or maybe it seems lonelier now. Whatever. New Year’s Resolution # One–see a movie alone again. Once a month.

    Yikes. Enough rambling. Fragrances I’ve been wearing this holiday season: Jicky extrait (someone said I smelled dashing), PdN New York, Onda (someone said I smelled complex and complicated), Habit Rouge, Chergui, Chene and Jaisalmer. And suddenly it seems like a good day for Parfum Sacre.

  • Masha says:

    Avignon and Zagorsk get a lot of wearing here by everyone at holiday time. I think we miss our church back home! And yoga, I’ve been practicing since age 6 (I have my hippie aunts to thank for that!) and it’s become more valuable with every year. My sons like it too, though they’ve developed some “special” poses like, “Downward Facing Peeing Dog”- the typical pose, but with one leg raised. ARGH!:o Hope your family is more, um, traditional….

  • Flora says:

    Patty, LOVE the pet photos, and your family holiday sounds just wonderful. All the best to you and yours, and I may just bring out some Caron favorites myself! @};-