Friday, March 21, 2008

I'm feeling the need to run away ...

from book reviews, tragic anniversaries and other burdensome things, so it seems like a good time to blather about perfume. Here are some random thoughts on recent sniffery:

Neil Morris Spectral Violet: I won't even try to give a full review this one, because Mary already captured it so perfectly in hers. (You'll find her whole series of Neil Morris reviews here. Just page down to SV.) However, I do want to say that as someone who has mixed feelings about violet notes, and violet soliflores in particular, I find SV completely lovable. Most violet scents strike me as insipid. I like violet when it comes along with the moxie of something like Jolie Madame; and I like it candied and romantic, as in N'Aimez que Moi. I can't stand it in its plastic, sweetly watery persona--Marc Jacobs Violet is a classic example. SV, as Mary so rightly points out, has a very natural character. It's like sticking your nose down in a pot of violets. It gives you green, earthy, sweet--the whole shebang. And, to quote Mary again, it's a truly unisex floral. I would love to smell this on a guy.

Madini oils: Anybody who's been looking at my "Scent of the Moment" knows I've been going through the whole catalog of Madini oils lately. I don't know why, but a few weeks ago I just started channeling the ghost of some scent-loving hippie, and I can't get enough of smelling like a head shop. Fortunately, Dave is extremely fond of Eau de 70s Stoner, so I get no complaints when I dab on the heavy, sweet, animalic Musk Gazelle, which dries down to the scent I imagine Tabu must once have been. He also really likes the heady floral shriek of Narciso. I've gotten compliments from regular people on Azahar, which is a pure orange blossom scent that lacks both the acrid edge of most fake orange blossom frags, as well as the musk that is usually employed to cover up that problem. I've tried about half the others to be found at Talisman, but those are my faves so far. I'm sure I'll post about some more in the future.

The Fragrance Shop: More oils here, but not the hippie kind. TFS has a vast catalog of imported and domestic oils, including numerous musks, plus their own blends, but they are probably best known for their dupes. I've got to say, I've tried a lot of their dupes over the years, and the only ones I'd really jump up and down about are Je Reviens and Tatiana, both of which smell perfectly like their vintage versions. The Tatiana is especially nice, and may contain a better quality jasmine than the original ever did. There are some real winners among their house blends, especially China Lily, which is a classic musky China Rain with an big helping of lilies on the side; and The Big Easy, an unusual blend of patchouli, LOTV, amber and vetiver that, inexplicably, actually captures the olfactory character of New Orleans. I'd also give an honorable mention to African Queen, especially if all that talk above about violets got you excited. Married with hyacinth and musk, the violet in this one is sweet but not bland.

Enough blather. Back to work and other stuff for me. Hope everybody has a sweet weekend, and Happy Easter to those who celebrate.

Photo from Wikipedia.


chayaruchama said...

Ooooh, NO, you don't.
I'm goin' with, my dear.

I'm a big Madini fan myself- Ambar Gris is a smoky second skin that croons; Chipre's great; Olive Flowers, Henna, Mokhalati, and Musk Pierre I love.

Spectral Violet- great story, great scent.

Let's go FAR AWAY....

Happy Purim, Easter, Persian New Year........!

BitterGrace said...

I share your love of Henna and Chipre--though Chipre needs a good 30 minutes on my skin to get herself together. I've yet to try the others you like, but they're going on my list.

BTW, you're welcome to come along, if you can endure my violin playing--or is that too high a price to pay? ;-)

Perfumeshrine said...

*Ears perking up on Musk Gazelle*

BitterGrace said...

It's potent stuff, E, but I think you might like it. It certainly fills a gap in my floral-heavy collection ;-)