Five things

I had something in mind to write about but always check back at Posse to see if I’ve done that before and in this case I’d done something vaguely similar in 2020 so no go.

Then, an article on perfume bottles popped up on the weekend edition of the Financial Times. So, I thought about bottles, but got side-tracked by the mention of the Gucci The Alchemist’s Garden series which I’d never heard of. This is definitely something I want to explore but clearly a couple of days isn’t going to do it.

And, it’s weir weather here. Around 60 degrees Fahrenheit, damp and sunny. I’m not complaining about the sunny. But the temp is wrong for the time of year and it’s leading into yet another wet period. I have loads of roses and the nasturtium continue to grow madly. Mother Nature is mad at us.

Plus we’re getting towards the holiday season. Yes, I know Xmas doesn’t get discussed till after Thanksgiving in the US, but many retailers here are so at loose ends you start to get Xmas shops popping up in department stores at the end of August. I turn my face away.

Anyway.  So, a fallback to five things – a couple perfume related. My answers in red.

  1. A couple of fave winter memories? In late December 2010, we got on the last plane out of Heathrow to NYC as a huge storm was coming into the East Coast. Got diverted to and stuck in Minneapolis for a day (no fun, spent it at the airport). Made it to NYC where there was two feet of snow. My son got to sled for the first time in Prospect Park and then we had hot chocolate at the sadly now gone Ozzy’s on 7th all hush and white. Sort of sublime.

    In the January before I left NYC (mid-1990s), again, a huge snowstorm, Sunday into Monday. I was able to get to work but things closed down at 1 PM. I had lunch with two friends at one of the only open restaurants (Moroccan place) and then got on the subway which stopped completely three stops from home. Walked for an hour in knee-deep snow. Winter wonderland.
  2. When it’s cold, dark and dreary, where is one place you would take yourself if you could? We went to an Indian ocean island in the Maldives the summer before the pandemic. True Robinson Crusoe, barefoot luxury. Probably the most fascinating, relaxing holiday I’ve ever had, as it was so far from ‘normal’ life. I recall stepping on to the room’s deck once we were settled in and seeing a ray swim by, followed by a school of iridescent blue fish.
  3. What are a couple of cold-weather perfume staples (assuming you live some place where it gets reasonably cold – if not, your ‘winter’ staples)? Generally, I dive deep into Serge Lutens Arabie once it gets colder. It’s luscious and comforting in a really oddball way. Another Lutens, Rose de Nuit, also comes out of the box. Rose and apricot: hot and heady. This year, because I now own it in perfume form, Guerlain Shalimar will get a lot of wear I expect.
  4. What perfume do you have your eye on for the colder season? I’ve been making so much noise about Kilian Dark Lord – I would love a small size (ie, I think they offer travel sizes) of this. Even if I wear it infrequently it’s so stuck on my nasal passages and head – the want monster is going in tough on it.
  5. Lastly, holiday gifts. I already know I’m getting a Buddleja (butterfly) bush for the garden. But if the sky were the limit I wouldn’t mind a small flat in a palazzo in Venice. I’ve just finished a book series set in Venice by Philip Gwynne Jones (highly recommend) which has me jonesing for this in one of the quieter neighbourhoods (Dorsoduro? The name alone…). I’ve never been (only been to Florence). Clearly, one can dream.

So, what about you? What are your answers?

Pics: Pexels & Wiki



  • cinnamon says:

    Martini glass … The Guerlain vanillas are plush (and lush) winter in a bottle.

  • Tom says:

    Winter memories: living in NYC in the blizzard of ’83. The whole city basically shut down, but I still had to go into work. I worked at Dean & Deluca at the time and lived in the East Village, and all of us who lived in Manhattan even reasonably close needed to come into work. Because the city may have been crippled, but SoHoites needed sun dried tomatoes. Any cold windy winter day when I lived in Milwaukee. We had a lovely apartment with a wood burning fireplace, which was absolutely wonderful. I’d love to be there again for a cold winter day- I love a fireplace and this was a nice old Midwestern vaguely Craftsman place with lots of old wood and built-ins. Cozy doesn’t begin to describe it.

    One of my favorite scents for the cold is Guerlain Spiriteuse Double Vanille. A big furry vanilla hug and it was generously given to me by a friend who is no longer alive. I have about another’s winters worth, I think.

    I never could skate, or ski. I am built like a martini glass- broad chest and shoulders on a teeny waist and long spindly legs. I tip over too much. And frankly I think it’s kind of silly. Killed Sonny Bono and a few Kennedy’s if I am not mistaken.

    Holiday gifts? Oy Vey! Xmas in America start shortly after the fourth of July if you look at the ads. I can’t even think about it until after I get over the turkey coma.

  • March says:

    LOTS of downhill sledding near where I grew up, there would be dozens of people on that particular hill, you had to cut sharply to the right at the bottom not to hit the trees, fingers crossed you didn’t take anyone else down. One of my funniest memories was decades ago, we were going to a wedding in Pennsylvania and there was a blizzard, probably 70% of the invitees didn’t come, but the 30% of us there had an awesome time! We got in trouble for doing donuts (spinning the car) in the snow in the church parking lot — I was not driving. Good times! We went to Florida for a few Christmases long ago (the in-laws wintered there) and I always found it odd and vaguely depressing but the kids loved it. My favorite smells right now are spicy winter smells — cinnamon and clove, and that old standby, Thymes Frasier Fir.

  • Dina C. says:

    Fave winter memories: New Years Eve weekend 88 to 89, went to NYC with my BFF and 3 guys she knew on the train. The five of us did tourist stuff all weekend including going to the top of the World Trade Center. Had so much fun. Another great winter memory: sledding with my kids when they were little. 2. Because of the above, I love the idea of major cities in winter, museums, shopping, theatre rather than a tropical island. I’d send myself to London. 3. I love Bois des Iles, VC&A Bois d’Iris, and Gucci No 3 in winter. 4. Would love a FB of 31 Rue Cambon edt. My decant is almost gone. 5. My perfume wish list is full of two categories: discontinued Guerlains and green florals. (I’m so predictable.) Cinnamon, I loved reading your answers. I’d love to visit Venice someday.

    • cinnamon says:

      NYC is a great holiday destination (or it was — have no clue now). And proper snow is a wonderful thing. You don’t get it here. Really enjoyed reading your answers. Tx

  • Portia says:

    OOOH! Fun Cinnamon,
    1. A couple of fave winter memories?
    Xmas dinner in London 1994. My bestie and his husband were rich. They got a chef in and a group of us Club Kids got together and had the most lavish Xmas feast I have ever had.
    Couldn’t sleep one night in Prague 2013. Jin and I got out of bed about 2am and wandered the snow white, empty streets for a couple of hours. It was so beautiful and peaceful.
    2. When it’s cold, dark and dreary, where is one place you would take yourself if you could?
    Outside for a ramble through the cold.
    3. What are a couple of cold-weather perfume staples (assuming you live some place where it gets reasonably cold – if not, your ‘winter’ staples)?
    Last winter I wore Penhaligon’s Halfeti Leather and Mancera Red Tobacco quite a bit.
    What perfume do you have your eye on for the colder season?
    Dunno. We are heading into heat and my mind is firmly planted there. The only fragrance winging its way to me right now is Amouage Beloved woman because it’s being DCd and Musette made me do it.
    Lastly, holiday gifts.
    I’ve bought a bunch of shower gels for people but nothing else.

    Portia x

    • cinnamon says:

      Good lord on number 1. And I do love your can’t sleep rambles. I want to do Prague at some point. I’ve read some magical books about it. Have you sampled any of the Guccis? I’m now really curious but the only way I will be able to access them is London. I have other things on the list for Paris.

      • Portia says:

        Yes to the Guccis. Two particularly took my heart The Eyes Of The Tiger but I cannot spend that kind of money on another amber. Tears Of Iris is the one I purchased. It’s absolutely gorgeous but still, not really worth that much money. I love it but have had moments of buyers remorse about the spend.
        Portia xx

      • Dina C. says:

        Politely butting in to say that I recently bought a sample of Gucci Alchemist’s Garden Tears of Iris from STC and I’m wearing it today for, like, the 3rd time. It’s a nice powdery iris. Reminds me a lot of Donna Karan Iris which is discontinued, wonderful stuff. I’d be thrilled to receive this as a bday gift later this week. Especially since it’s pretty spendy.

  • alityke says:

    Winter memories? I fell in love with fragrance when I received the Lily of the Valley scented Kiddle Kologne doll. The only doll I ever loved & played with.
    Otherwise the memory of toasting bread at the fireside during power cuts. The smell of the fire smoke & toasting bread & the feel of an open fire on my cheeks.

    Winter holiday destination? We have usually taken a winter break in the Canary Islands. Dark volcanic beaches rather than white sand & Atlantic waves make for great walking & watersports.

    Cold weather perfumes? Opium, Ambre Sultan, Raghba, Kalemat & similar warm scent are my go tos.
    Winter perfume purchase? I have already bought something new for this winter & I’m wearing the stink out of it. Shalimar Millisime Tonka. She is astoundingly gorgeous!

    Holiday gifts?
    My dream gift would be platinum & diamond stud earrings. Nothing flashy just a single stone.
    Though in reality, I would give anything for DH to achieve a long lasting full remission from his sarcoma.

    • cinnamon says:

      Wood smoke is a big one for the season. You get so many interactions. Never been to Canaries. Sigh. Need to look at the Shalimar flanker. I bought emerald studs a few years ago. Been hankering after such things for ages. Will continue to send positive thoughts your way for DH.

  • Tara C says:

    Favorite winter memories: skating outside in the dead of winter up in Canada. So magical.
    Vacation dream: Tahiti… your Maldives vacation sounds similarly idyllic.
    Cold weather perfumes: so many, as this is my favorite perfume season. Definitely AG Encens Flamboyant.
    Desired winter perfume purchase: Encens Suave by Matière Prémière.
    Holiday gifts: I know I won’t be getting anything, but I’d love a beautiful dining room set for my new flat.

    • cinnamon says:

      Crap at skating but admire those who can do it. So fluid etc. I recall great sledding areas in Philadelphia, where I lived for a while as a child. With bumps and everything you’d want.