Don't let the lot to choose your fragrance...

... as it has weird sense of humor sometimes.

I'd like to share my story about how I let the lot to choose my fragrance to wear for today. Actually I didn't wont to make any decision. You probably know those lazy days when even making a decision is already too much work. So, you probably stay in pyjamas the whole day and become just a witness of events running through a timeline.

I wanted to wear a fragrance, but didn't know which one. So, I did say loudly - "I don't want to make any decision today, so let it be. Let the lot choose it for me". Oh, be careful in what you say...

This morning I dropped a box full of miniatures. Fortunately it fell on the carpet and everything seemed to be unbroken. But I didn't see that a corner of one miniature was broken and there was a small whole in it. The miniature remained full as the air pressure worked against the gravity. So, I put the box back to where it belonged. Later I started to wondering - when and on what way the lot will decide the perfume for me. So, I decided to help by browsing through the miniatures. And... I took the broken one and opened to sniff (totally unconsciously). At the moment I took off the lid the pressure couldn't work anymore and the whole content came on me. The lot had spoken (and done) - all 3 ml of this perfume are on me now.

So, the perfume I am wearing today is Vent Vert by Balmain (an old formulation). I smell like one giant green narcotic and even poisonous narcissus. And I don't mind - it's a funny joke of the lot and I can laugh on it. I am just curious of its effect on people I'll meet today walking with my dog and shopping. There is another funny thing here. The Narcissus note was not easy for me to recognize in fragrances. But I do recognize it now very well.

And can you also remember the story when the lot has decided a fragrance for you and has shown its sense of humor?


Fille en Aiguilles by Serge Lutens: the first impressions

Russian version - click here

Image credits: (c) AromaX

Last Saturday I decided to leave an idyll of a French country and to visit a local city Vichy to remember how does it feel to be among people again. Vichy is famous by its thermal baths and sources from the times of the Ancient Rome. But I was there just to walk on the streets o Vichy, to admire the glory of its architecture, to try some sweets and of course to visit some perfumery stores. Because in French perfumeries you can find fragrances that are not available yet in Netherlands. Well, I found there Idylle by Guerlain as well as Guerlain Homme Intense. I also found the whole line of Ego Facto. But Fille en Aiguilles by Serge Lutens was the most amazing one.

What could I say? It’s love from the first sigh. It’s definitely a creation in style of Serge Lutens – the master of sweet oriental exotic fragrances. I experienced the same impressions as I did when I tried Cédre – my first fragrance by Serge Lutens. My first impression is – it smells incense, smoke and burnt sugar. As if you could make a candy by smelting of sugar together with incense resin – a fragile, warm, transparent piece of candy that is not sticky at all. A little bit of honey might be added to soften the burnt sugar smell and give it warmth.

First I didn’t notice the fir needles – the most important component of this fragrance that even found in its name. But finally they came as well – a balsamic, sweet and fresh coniferous aroma that perfectly goes with the coldness of incense note. I’ve also discovered a new note that I also found in other niche fragrances. So far I call it industrial note as it reminds me a bit of burnt rubber. I smelled it in the rose oxide aromachemical, but also in Palisandrol by Firmenich. I found it in Afgano by Nasamoto. Probably it’s a kind of furanon or pyrazine molecule. In Fille en Aiguilles it gives depth to incense, supports the fir needles smell and emphasizes the burnt smoke note.

Amber is also mentioned in the pyramide on Osmoz. But I think it’s imitated by the sweet resins. And probably arises from the combination of resins and that industrial note. My nose enjoys the burnt sugar sweetness so much that it doesn’t want to look for the amber. The pyramid on Osmoz also shows the fruits. I haven’t found any – probably they are hidden in the sweet fruitiness of fir needles. Or may be molded from the burnt sugar syrup. There are also spices. I can’t define them as they just give some brightness and emphasizes the oriental character of this fragrance.

This fragrance recalls the images of rocks, softwood, a hermit monk, smoke of the open fire, meditation, tranquillity and quietness, being one with nature, mystery. It’s interesting to notice that my images are mauve and blue coloured although the fragrance itself is rather ambery yellowish with a little brown in it.

Well, to me it’s a perfect autumn scent. It makes you warm despite the fresh breeze of incense and fir needles. It’s a bit introvert. And I guess it’s a nice companion for a long walk somewhere in the forest or park.


Vacation! Finally!

Well, the coming two weeks I’ll spend near a small French town La Chapelaude in Auvergne (well, actually it’s Bourbonnais above the Auvergne). Tranquillity, space and nature are the key words to describe this place.

Mas des Tilleuls – a former farm house under the Linden trees and re-decorated as a manor house will be my pied-a-terre. It’s funny how the owners gave a twist to this house. There is a drawing room with an open fire place, a big dark kitchen combined with an eating room with a small stove, Master bedroom with a canopy bed. If you have vivid imagination you can easily think you are in a castle.

But there is one thing I always miss in any vacation house – the perfumery lab. So, I always take my aromachemicals with me and create a perfumery lab on place. Sometimes I think if I am slightly mad to take all the staff with me. But imagine – it’s France, the Mecca of perfumes and a very quiet and picturesque place that gives a lot of inspiration. And you have a lot of time to experiment. Aren’t they not the best circumstances to play with fragrances? Here is an example of a temporary perfumery lab I created in Mas des Tilleuls.

And of course as any perfume addicted I take a part of my collection. In Mas des Tilleuls there is a spare room with a big table, so I could create a fragrant table.

Wine and cheese – both Dutch’s and French’s favourites taste perfect in the evening under the Linden trees by a candle light. As well as a cup of good Earl Grey in the morning while listening to the birds songs and the sough of the wind.