I was scrabbling around in the perfume box for something I hadn’t worn in a while. Had completely forgotten I own one of the 15ml bottles of Le Labo Patchouli 24 and was just delighted to pull it out.
This is fairly old. I bought it from the first (tiny) New York shop in 2007 (a year after the house itself started), so way before you could find Le Labo everywhere. This was during a visit to my father. I doubt he was along, but my son, age 6 at the time, was. Beyond the ‘we mix it for you right now in front of your eyes’ thing, what I recall most about that visit was that at least one of the guys who ran the company was actually in the shop and he took my boy over to a seating area and entertained him while I was perfuming. Beyond that being excellent customer care, it was just really sweet and I wish I had a picture.
Notes include patchouli, birch, styrax and vanilla and Annick Menardo was the nose (also the nose for Bulgari Black – which we’ll get to). In a comment about the fragrance on NST, Robin states that this is not a perfume to buy unsniffed and I’m with her on that even though I bought it at the shop based on comments about it. This was during a period when I was after really dark, stanky, weird perfumes. (The SA may have offered me a few things to smell but I have no memory of doing that – only of standing at the counter and watching her mix my brew.)
I love the different descriptions of this, from old chemistry lab to cow dung (someone who didn’t like it).
I adore it in any case and it’s still absolutely wonderful from the bottle after originally being ‘made’ 15 years ago. It doesn’t change much on me from the big birch-tarry opening with a whisper of vanilla except to smooth out and for the vanilla to get stronger. The vanilla is caramelly in the way really good extract is sniffed from a bottle — so not cloying at all.
I can’t wear Tauer Lonestar even though I think it’s gorgeous, but I can wear this. I think that might be due to the vanilla, but who knows. On me Patch 24 is unctuous leather-birch tar-creosote ever so slightly gentled (just enough) by the vanilla. It reminds (shit, now the D key, along with the C on my PC is sticking) of teenage summers spent in Maine, the horse/farm smell in a nearby village, the interior of lean-to shelters I stayed in while hiking and the interior of my old shed (both soaked in creosote). These are all things that I love and appreciate. LL Patch 24 reminds me of them and I can’t believe I’ve left it so long since the last time I wore this (like it’s been a couple of years).
Bulgari Black: apparently for some people Patch 24 reminds them of BB. Not me, as the times I tried BB it simply smelled of vanilla-rubber, and not in a good way. Really not attractive. It’s one of the perfumes that lots of people adore but doesn’t do it for me (others like this are the Narciso Rodriguez and FM Musc Ravageur, which is decidedly not ravageur on me).
Anyway, this is definitely back in rotation until it (if?) gets too hot here to manage it, when it will go back in the box till autumn.
And almost forgot to say the bottle has my name on it: “Compounded in Nolita by Bo-Jade for …”. This sent me looking at my bottle of Ylang 49 which just says who compounded it on X day. Ah, well, that’s what happens when you become wildly successful and have been gobbled up by Estee Lauder.
This one of yours? Are you more Lonestar? Is this so far outside your love zone it makes you twitchy?