Hey, everyone — please welcome Musette as today’s guest poster, complete with her wacky fonts! Sorry for the late start, we had the time wrong…
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Is 22 Blue?
Three is yellow. Five is a pale pink. Six is a shocking pink. Two is pale blue. But 2+2 equals a very dark blue-violet. 22 is silver and white while one, which is black and eight which is green, becomes bronze when it´s 18 and russet when it´s 9. And 28 Rue Cambon is black and green and very pale pumpkin.
Is this synaethesia at work? Wikipedia defines synaesthesia thus: from the Ancient Greek ÏƒÏÎ½ (syn), “together,” and Î±á¼´ÏƒÎ¸Î·ÏƒÎ¹Ï‚ (aisthÄ“sis), “sensation” â€” is a neurologically based phenomenon in which stimulation of one sensory or cognitive pathway leads to automatic, involuntary experiences in a second sensory or cognitive pathway. People who report such experiences are known as synesthetes.
In one common form of synesthesia, known as grapheme â†’ color synesthesia or color-graphemic synesthesia, letters or numbers are perceived as inherently colored
It is, perhaps, the most regular´ version of it for me. I tend to speak Common Grapheme: numbers have colors and days of the week have colors, too (Wednesday is a lovely leaf-green, since you asked) And I mostly think in color and when I am stressed I can´t always remember if I´m speaking normally or in color, which drives my accountant crazy ( you try working with a nutjob at tax-time who says, “it´spale violet- blue and black´ when what I meant to say was “47“)
But all too often my locked-down´ color references shift when fragrance, colors and numbers collide. And fragrances have their own color preferences that often are very frustrating because they don´t correspond to the number I have put down for them (for example, Shocking is, of course, the number 6 – but it really isn´t because the SMELL of Shocking is a deep brown, shot with gold, so it´s the number 9. Lucky for me Chanel No 5 smells black and white and always has been, though I suspect I´m influenced by Mme and her elegant label. The number 5 will just have to get over it, with its jaunty, cotton-candy pink self.
Awhile back Shelley @ Scentscelf posed the question “can a fragrance be in black and white?” There are a couple of them, to be sure, like Chanel 5, but for this poor grapheme most fragrances go tromping through the crayon box, singing a jaunty tune. A lot of them, of course, are colored´ by their names – it´s tough to not see violet´ in a fragrance named thus (though there is one violet scent that isn´t a color or a number – it´s a dress!) and let´s face it, Vent Vert is just that (at least the vintage is. The reformulation is more like Vent Acid). For 30 years I´ve felt I should be swayed by Vacances´ charming green bottle top and liquid gold color but no matter how I try, it remains an intense near-white, like a sunspot, with a smack of bright blue. Every time I sniff Vacances, for a moment time stands still, the sun blazes white-hot and all the birds stop singing, like high noon in August. Her quieter sister, Lucien Lelong pour Femme, is crisp tan with an edge of aqua, though there isn´t a hint of water in the scent. It´s a yacht I fell in love with 20 years ago – those colors exactly replicated in a fragrance. I suspect Vacances would be mortified to know she isn´t a Parisienne´s holiday – unless said Parisienne is holidaying in a Wisconsin cornfield.
Mitsouko smells very pale bronze with touches of pale green and mercury bubbling through. Her number is 37. I just fell head over heels for PdG´s Drama Nuui – you´ll have to guess the color(s)!
But why on earth is L´eau d´Hiver pale slate-green with hints of very pale lilac? And for such an elegant scent it has a goofy number: 18.
And that´s just the tip of the iceberg but to bore you all to death with my color/number references would just be – you know – boring! Way more fun to hear what color references you might have. Or maybe they´re not color references – maybe they´re dress styles or shoes or dog ears or whatever.
Tell me I am not the only grapheme (or nutjob, as my CPA would say) in the bunch – come play with me!!! Do you have these same kinds of experiences with perfumes?
And one more question, since I am in a Questioning Mood: have you ever liked a perfume you would hate on its own but you are oddly drawn to because it reminds you of a fragrance you loved at an earlier time? Such it is with Miss Rocaille. By itself it would drive me insane. It’s a bit screechy and very thin and not very interesting, but for some reason it reminds me of something I wore in my late-teens, perhaps Coty’s Elan? The funny part is, I cannot remember a single thing about the actual smell of Elan! Are there any perfumes that do that to/for you, conjuring up associations with no concrete basis?
— by Musette/Anita
Color wheel: webdesign.org