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Archive for March, 2010

Quickie Scent Diary post today, but probably no other new posts until next Monday.  I wish all who celebrate it a joyous, meaningful Easter!

Wednesday, Mar. 24:  Benjamin the ailing calf did not make it.  We still don’t know why.

Chilly this morning, warmed up later.  Tested Panthere de Cartier from a swap.  Rather nice for some time, a complex tuberose concoction that reminds me a bit of Ysatis in the early stages, but eventually develops the dreaded tolu balsam.   Had to put on a bit of something really tuberose-y to kill the tolu (Beyond Love).

Thursday, Mar. 25:  Ever have one of those days where everything went right?  No fireworks or ticker-tape parades, but no snags, either major or minor?  I call that a Pretty Good Day, and I should appreciate them more.  SOTD: Crown Perfumery Crown Bouquet.  Which I bought unsniffed, and which I absolutely adore.

Friday, Mar. 26:  More green stuff today – tested Gucci Envy and CdG Series 1 Leaves: Lily.  I’m disappointed in both of them: cold, metallic florals with all the sensual allure of an embittered spinster librarian.  I think it’s too much of the wrong kind of muguet.  I love me some Diorissimo, but more and more I realize that Diorissimo is not your average lily of the valley scent. 

Saturday, Mar. 27:  I feel terrible – spring allergies, I guess.  It’s chilly out, but sunny, and The CEO hung a couple of loads of clothes out on the line.  Bookworm left the house at 7am for the first outdoor track meet of the season (indoor track finished up about three weeks ago), spent all day in the sun, ran one 800-meter race as part of a relay and one on her own.  Despite applying sunscreen at least twice, she came home sunburned at 6pm.  Sunshine is tough on strawberry blondes…

SOTD: tested a sample of AG Eau de Camille.  Very nice, but cologne-ish, which is just not my thing, so I don’t need any.  Went to bed early in Shalimar Light, for comfort.

Sunday, Mar. 28: My mother’s birthday.  I thought briefly of wearing No. 5 parfum in her honor, but wound up in a huuuuge hurry to leave the house with birthday cake and presents and cards – we were going straight to my parents’ from church, and realized just in time that the schedule of services would be different for both Palm Sunday and Easter so we’d have to leave an hour earlier than usual.  Eek.  So the SOTD was TFBO Voile de Fleur, which was easily grabbable and worked fine.  It’s the friendliest white floral I own. 

Monday, Mar. 29: My nephew’s birthday, which we celebrated at Chuck E. Cheese’s after Mom’s party yesterday.  I got to work this morning and realized I had no scent on (like the rest of the Western world, I hate Mondays and usually hit the snooze button at least once), so went digging around in my purse to see what samples were in there. 

I was slightly shocked to find that I have the following on hand: a 10ml decant of vtg Chamade pdt and a sample of vtg edt, my treasured 8ml decant of Apres l’Ondee, a sample of vtg Prince Matchabelli Wind Song, that frighteningly robust, glitter-nailed, Wonderbra-wearing sample of Bond #9 Broadway Nite, which I should get out of my good leather purse before it contaminates the interior for the next 60 years, and samples of Chant d’Aromes, Reverie au Jardin, Ferre by Gianfranco Ferre, AG Matin d’Orage, Il Profumo Gardenia Royal, Gres Folie Douce, JHaG Midnight Oud, Clarins Par Amour, and two tester-version samples from SSS: Bouquet Blanche and the new version of Encens Tranquille, which has been reworked and released (TODAY!) as Incense Pure.  (IP is really nice stuff, if not really my style – if you like incense + woods + labdanum, you should smell it.  Laurie sells samples at a very reasonable rate at the SSS website.)

Picked Par Amour, a nice quiet woody rose – a sort of budget version of Amouage Lyric – for no better reasons than it’s chilly today and I’m wearing my tomato-red sweater.  And my little bit o’ Parfum Sacre extrait from a split showed up today, after Par Amour wore off, so I had to put some of that on… Mmm.  Very, very lovely.  A bit more pepper and incense than the edp.  How good is it, though, when you put on a scent and say to yourself, “Boy, I just love this stuff!”?

Tuesday, Mar. 30: This has been a pleasant week in terms of wearing What I Like… It’s supposed to get up to 60 F today.  I’m skeptical, but the sun just peeked through the clouds so maybe it will happen after all.  SOTD: PdN Le Temps d’une Fete.  I love this smell, but the simpering name was a terrible idea, and all the de Nicolai big bottles look so dumb, I just want to go beg Patricia de Nicolai to let me work for her, just so I can work on her packaging and marketing.   Beg her, I tell you!  I do like the small, squarish 1-oz bottles – they feel satisfyingly heavy in the hand; they have slightly sloping tops so that they’re not entirely rectilinear.  But the big bottles: ugh.  Here’s a link to Dane’s review of LTdF at Pere de Pierre, so you can see the bottle, and read his take on one of my very, very favorite Happiness in a (really ugly) Bottle scents.

I’m currently working up a Fragrance Throwdown post on Le Temps vs. Chamade, so look for that one in the coming week.

The photo is of part of my collection.  From L to R, Parfums de Rosine Rose d’Ete, Guerlain Shalimar Light, Mariella Burani, Guerlain Terracotta Voile d’Ete, YSL Paris Pont des Amours, Balmain Jolie Madame edt, and Bath and Body Works Velvet Tuberose.

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Taking a little break

Had family things over the weekend… have farm-ish and work-ish things to do this week… have a few samples to decant and send out soon…

So, will be back with more postings within a few days.    No worries.

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 I knew very little about Crown Perfumery when I first ran across a mention of Crown Bouquet as being “the greenest of green florals.” It was more than a year between the mention and the sniffage, but Crown Bouquet stayed on my To Test list all that time, and when I failed to find a sample source, I just went ahead and bought it unsniffed.

I know, I know, we should absolutely never, never, absolutely never, buy anything without knowing whether it’s going to work or not. Well, I lucked out with this one: it’s beautiful. And if not the very greenest of green florals, certainly a lovely representative of the genre.

A little background on Crown Perfumery, cribbed mostly from basenotes.net and parfumsraffy.com: It grew out of the corset-and-crinoline business begun by William Sparks Thomson, whose son William concocted lavender smelling-salts for ladies whose tight corsets made them swoon (from lack of air, I assume, not surfeit of pleasure). By 1872 Crown Perfumery was producing fine fragrance, having gained permission from Queen Victoria to use the image of her own crown as part of the bottle. The company did well until World War I, when Wm. Thomson Sr. died. By 1939 the company was sold to Lever Bros., and ceased making fragrance. In 1993 the company was revived, and several of its signature fragrances produced using the original recipes. However, the company was sold again in 1999 to Clive Christian, who ceased production of the Crown fragrances and began producing his own scents.

I haven’t smelled any Clive Christian scents, nor am I likely to given their cost structure. But I’ll say now that if Crown Bouquet is anything to judge by, Mr. Christian has probably done the perfume community a disservice by discontinuing all the Crown scents. His own fragrances are probably very pleasant – Perfumes: The Guide found them all acceptable (three stars). But the website is unconscionably pretentious, in the eyes of this thoroughly-democratic-minded American.

Crown Bouquet was first released in 1936 under the name Crab Apple Bouquet. Notes: galbanum, green notes, gardenia, tuberose, hyacinth, and orange blossom. It was reportedly inspired by Wallis Simpson, the American woman whose love prompted Edward VIII to renounce the throne. I admit it seems little odd to me that Mrs. Simpson, who had been divorced twice before setting her cap for the Prince of Wales, and who appears to have been a strong-willed, opinionated, sensual woman, should inspire such a tender, delicate, fresh-faced fragrance.  (One of my favorite books, The Oldest Living Confederate Widow Tells All, describes Wallis as “that gold-digger with a butt like a boy’s.”)  Here’s the accompanying ad copy from Crown:

A fragrance to uplift, inspire, and refresh one’s senses, capturing spring white flowers and greens… The greenest of green flower gardens. One should not only smell the pretty flowers of the bouquet, but sense all the characteristics that come with a freshly cut bunch of flowers: green leaves, earthy roots, the freshness of the few remaining water pearls clinging to its cut stems.

For once, the ad copy is appropriate and succinct. Crown Bouquet smells of green, juicy leaves, with a cool damp galbanum breeze, and spring flowers. That is all. Luckily, that is all it really needs.

It does start out with a breath of galbanum, and some very crisp, nearly mouth-watering green notes. I can almost hear the leaves and stems crunching juicily in my hands as I gather them. Hyacinth joins the green notes, and then gardenia. I do smell each of the listed floral notes, one after the other, and it’s not much of a blend, but that doesn’t bother me at all because the progression is so pretty. The orange blossom is a little soapy and the tuberose is a little sweet, but fear not, white-floral-phobes. They are extremely quiet and well-behaved, no indoles at all. There is very little in the way of a base, although I think I smell the ghost of vetiver there at the very end, and possibly a tiny bit of musk. My guess is that these notes are there to provide a vase for the bouquet – not really meant to be smelled on their own, but merely to offer support for the top and heart notes.

Edit: The more I wear this fragrance, the more I’m convinced that there is a big slug of marigold (tagete) in there along with the listed florals.  There is a deliciously bitter edge to the greenery, and I’d swear it’s due to marigold.

This is a simple, pleasant scent, utterly unsophisticated, and if you subscribe to Gabrielle Chanel’s point of view that “a woman should not smell of flowers,” this one will not suit you.  It smells very natural, and, perhaps consequentially, does not last forever.  I get about five hours’ wear out of two spritzes, with the last two hours being rather faint and the perfume only noticeable upon bringing my wrist to my nose.  It is an edp but probably wears more like an edt, due to the all-but-unnoticeable basenotes.

One interesting observation: Crown Bouquet reminded me, upon first wearing, of another tender green floral I had worn recently – Jean Patou’s Vacances, frequently referred to, wistfully, as the greatest green floral of them all. It was only upon visiting basenotes.net for background on Crown Perfumery that I found out that Crown Bouquet and Vacances were released in the same year. There is a fresh simplicity about them both that I find affecting. They would both be nostalgic period pieces, unwearable except as costume, if not for the green notes breathing the air of spring over the florals.

Perhaps it’s me. Spring always makes me wistful and labile, dizzy with beauty and the knowledge that time is passing. I’ll leave you with A.E. Housman’s most cheerful poem:

Loveliest of Trees

Loveliest of trees the cherry now
Is hung with bloom along the bough
And stands about the woodland ride
Wearing white for Eastertide.

Now of my three score years and ten,
twenty will not come again.
And take from seventy years a score,
It only leaves me fifty more.

And since to look at things in bloom,
Fifty Springs is little room,
About the woodlands I will go
To see the cherry hung with snow.

A. E. Housman

 Photo of Crown Bouquet from fragrantica.com.  Photo of Wallis Simpson from kissnews.ro.  Photo of White Hyacinth from NanciD at flickr.com.  Photo of Wild Cherry from Lallee at flickr.com.  Housman poem from poetry.eserver.org.  My bottle of Crown Bouquet came from perfumecountry.com (not affiliated), but there are still a few other online sources.  (Don’t wait too long, though.)

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Wednesday, Mar. 17, Saint Patrick’s Day:  A little chilly today, with serious frost on the windshield when we left the house at 8am, but spring is definitely, finally, on the way.  SOTD: Chamade, of course.  I briefly considered Silences and Climat, but the green-and-gold won out.  Lovely, lovely stuff, and just that little bit old-fashioned.  SOTE:  Le Temps d’une Fete, because I couldn’t bear not to wear it today.  From other people’s descriptions, I had at one time thought these two scents were similar.  They’re really not.  Fragrance Throwdown coming on this comparison, because it’s interesting.

Happy birthday to Kevin!   And good luck to Virginia Tech in the NIT, since those jerks at the NCAA Tournament picked Wake Forest and Clemson instead (both of whom Tech beat in regular season games – don’t get me started, The CEO was absolutely livid and Gaze in tears of frustration).  Update: VT won. 

Thursday, Mar. 18:  Yep, spring is definitely coming.  My daffodil foliage is starting to poke up through the grass now.  And it’s 65 F outside, with actual sunshine!   SOTD:  Ferre by Gianfranco Ferre, a Pierre Bourdon composition.   A nice little thing that several people compare to Malle’s Iris Poudre, Ferre is nonetheless quite sweet on me.  I blame the violets in this case, although this scent has a distinctly fruity cast (melon and pineapple, of all things).  Where were the aldehydes?  I was promised aldehydes…  SOTA:  I chose to go ahead with my long-planned test of Patou Vacances.  I’m not sure what to say about this one yet.  More tests due.

Friday, Mar. 19: Lovely, lovely weather: warm and sunny.  SOTD: Apres l’Ondee.  I think it was a mistake for today – you know, pretty, but doesn’t fit my mood.  It should be raining, or at least cloudy, when I wear Al’O.  SOTA: Annick Goutal Eau du Ciel.  Well, this is more suitable to my frame of mind today.  It’s not fantastically green, but does have some green notes as well as violet and mimosa.  Very, very pretty.  Wonder if I’ll use up my mini this summer?  I think I’ll wear this in the heat.  It smells… pale blue.  Like sheets dried on the line, in the sunshine.

Saw a turkey today!  He was just doing his goose-step (turkey-step?) through the middle of a field by the road as I came home after work.  He must feel pretty safe, wandering around by himself.  He didn’t have his tail fanned out, and I had to look twice to make sure it was a tom.  The neck color’s pretty distinctive.  When males show off, they really show off, don’t they?

 Saturday, Mar. 20:  Spring has sprung, the grass has riz.  Wonder where the birdies is?  (Stupid rhyme – the birds were back before the grass.)  Beautiful weather today.  SOTD:  Chanel No. 5 Eau Premiere.  SOTE: AG Grand Amour, which starts out smelling like Chamade and then goes very quiet.

Sunday, Mar. 21:  Cloudy today, going to rain tonight.  We’ve got another sick calf in the shop lot; we think he had a mineral deficiency.  I hope we caught it in time.  Named him Benjamin… Davy, Beth and Sara are out in the big field with the other calves now.  They’re doing great.  SOTD: Silences

Monday, Mar. 22: Benjamin is still with us, but not doing well.  He’s getting electrolytes and calf formula, so I hope he’ll recover soon.  SOTD: AG Matin d’Orage.  This is so beautiful, and then it disappears so fast.  Sad.  After it wore off (three hours), I wore I Profumo di Firenze Gardenia Royale.  That one stayed on for five hours.  It’s a little sweet, but very pleasant. 

Virginia Tech won their second NIT game,  squeaking by UConn.  The CEO, Gaze, and Taz were in attendance, and apparently cheered their lungs out, to judge by how hoarse The CEO was when they came home. Go Hokies!  (Bookworm would have been there, but she had track practice and then an academic competition… which they lost.)

Tuesday, Mar. 23:  Benjamin’s still not doing well, and I’m afraid he won’t be with us long.  We shouldn’t have named him yet, I guess.  Weather is rainy and chilly again, in the mid 40’s.  I’m testing two versions of Sonoma Scent Studio’s upcoming Bouquet Blanche.  It’s beautiful, although it has maybe just a hair more orange blossom and jasmine than I’d choose myself.   I probably shouldn’t say anything more about it until it launches, but you can bet I’ll have a review up the very day it’s available on the SSS website!  Here’s Laurie Erickson’s description of this scent-in-progress:

Bouquet Blanche combines a creamy gardenia note with lush jasmine, tuberose, orange blossom, neroli, and ylang over a soft base of woods, light amber, and musk. The elegant base notes complement and extend the beautiful white florals without upstaging them.

It’s so cold this evening that we built a fire.  Brrrrr…  My sample of the Bouquet Blanche test version had worn off, so I grabbed a spritz of Alahine.  I love Alahine, it makes me happy.

Top image: “Where there are green bottles and butterflies” from oNe.SwEeT.wOrLd at flickr.com.

 

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More greens, please!  This is my second-favorite Green category, encompassing green scents that smell like leaves, grass, herbs, and other aromatics such as fig leaf. I could just as easily have stuck the “aromatic” scents in with the citruses, but this seemed to make more sense to me. I’m not a fan of fig leaf, by the way, so if you are, just ignore my clear prejudice.
 

LUSH Go Green (leafy)
B&BW Rainkissed Leaves (leafy) Not recommended. Highly chemical. I tested this the other day, hoping it would be quietly lovely since I enjoy using B&BW body products under other, more serious, fragrances. This one I jerked my head back from; it smells like a chemical spill.
Kenzo Kenzo Parfum d’Ete’ (leafy-citrus, plus some light florals – this is the current version, in the clear glass side-lying bottle, in the white-and-green box) I like this one very much. It is fresh and juicy, in the crushed-leaves, nearly-delicious manner of Prescriptives Calyx, but without the tropical fruit that smells overripe to me. (There are people that Calyx smells great on, but I’m not one of them. The older version of Parfum d’Ete’ is lovely too, but far more concentrated on lily of the valley.) You’ll also find this one listed with the Citrus-Fruity Greens.
DSH Perfumes Celadon (leafy) and Lucky Clover (clever grassy-herbal fougere that went just a tad too masculine for me – it’s really terrific, though, and I made sure to let The CEO know he was welcome to use it)
L’Artisan L’eau de Lierre (herbal-leafy, with some florals)
Byredo Green (leafy, with some light florals) Very nice stuff.  I loved the boxwood and fresh green leaves in it, but found it just a little too citrusy for my taste.  It is rather linear, but in such a cool, fresh way that I did not mind its smelling mostly the same all the way through.  If I liked citrus more, I’d be raving about this one.
AG Eau de Camille (grass + honeysuckle) Beautiful, fresh grassy-leafy green notes, with light florals. Smells like waiting for the school bus on early June mornings: honeysuckle, dew on the grass, the promise of heat and summer vacation to look forward to.
Profumo.it (Abdes al Salaam) Scents of the Soul Night Blossom (grass, herbal patchouli, and tuberose, actually extremely grassy) I obtained a sample of this one hoping it would be a lovely tuberose. It certainly contains tuberose, so if you hate tuberose give this one a miss. But I was struck by the attractiveness of the fresh, herbal qualities of the patchouli in this scent. I seem to be super-sensitive to patchouli, and it’s certainly possible that you might smell this scent and say, “What patchouli? This is all tuberose!” whereas I said, “What tuberose? This is all patchouli!” It’s very nice patchouli, as far as that goes: it smells like someone just picked fresh leaves, with a handful of grass, and crushed them.
Miller Harris Fleur de Matin (herbal-citrus-floral) This one is a very crisp, lovely breath of fresh air. Lots of kitchen-herbals here, with some citrus and light florals. The notes list: galbanum, grapefruit, lemon, neroli, honeysuckle, jasmine, pine, basil, marjoram. There’s not much in the way of galbanum, but this is a simple, beautiful waft of freshness.
AG Mandragore (herbal) A little citrus, some herbs (mandrake, sage, mint), some spices (pepper, anise, ginger), and woody notes. Plus boxwood, which can smell like cat pee to some people, but not to me. This one’s a little faint unless you “spray yourself wet.” The edt version is more widely available, but there is also an edp which is a bit stronger, by report. I actually love the boxwood and pepper in this; I just wish it was a little stronger.
AG Mandragore Pourpre (herbal) Similar to the original, with a bit more pepper.
AG Ninfeo Mio (citrus-herbal-woody, with fig leaf)
Hermes Jardin sur le Nil (fruity-aromatic-woody) I like this one very much; however, I found that I wasn’t wearing it much and gave away my mini bottle. Starts out with some fresh mango and citrus, then aromatic tomato leaf and carrot seed, followed by light florals (lotus, peony, hyacinth). The base is quiet woods and incense, with a tiny bit of labdanum. Unisex, fresh, and somehow quite calming.
Le Prince Jardinier Labyrinth Libertin (leafy herbal, with very light quiet florals) Very much like traditional cologne without the citrus that tends to bother me.  I like it.  I finally realized, however, that I simply don’t like cologne much, and traded it away since I wasn’t wearing it.

CB I Hate Perfume I Am a Dandelion

Nanadebary Green

Guerlain Aqua Allegoria Herba Fresca

Guerlain Aqua Allegoria MentafolliaL’Artisan Premier Figuier, and Premier Figuier Extreme(aromatic fig leaf and fresh fig) I’m not the person to review fig scents. I have never smelled – or even seen! – fresh figs, although I love the dried version. And the only part of fig leaf that I really enjoy is the vaguely coconutty aspect – the rest of the fig leaf character is very bitter to my nose. I dislike fig leaf intensely – my test notes for PFE say “Green and nasty, like Oscar the Grouch.” I’m going to quote Tania Sanchez and say, “If you like this sort of thing, you will like this sort of thing.” I don’t like this sort of thing, but I’m certainly not going to stop you from trying it.
Diptyque Philosykos (aromatic fig leaf and fresh fig)

See also Green Scents, Part 1.

Please share your favorite green-leafy-grassy-herbal-aromatic scents, and I’d welcome your additions to the list.   My thanks again to Now Smell This, Fragrantica.com, Perfume Shrine, and Perfumes: The Guide.

First image: Koru Pendant JC14 from jadefactory.com.  Second image: Fern Koru 1 from Gudenius.  Third image: 8045 Green Leaf from loupiote (Old Skool).  Fourth image: Mixed Herb Bouquet from Lara Ferroni.  Fifth image: Fig leaves from rickm FL.  All images except the first are from flickr.com.  I first saw the use of stylized koru in New Zealand art when visiting, and just loved it.  My own pounamu pendant is similar to the one pictured, and came from a little mom-and-pop shop down the street from JadeFactory in Hokatika, South Island, NZ.

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Spring is most definitely in the air – and poking up through ground which had snow on it as recently as two weeks ago.  With all this fresh growth about me, I’ve been craving green scents and making lists of what I want to smell.   Here’s part one of an exploration of green scents.

It has occurred to me that there are several subcategories of Green Scents: floral, citrus/fruity, herbal/aromatic, leafy, and mossy.  (I know, I know – what is it with me and the semi-obsessive need to categorize everything??  I tend to see this trait as a) a natural outgrowth of what I do – what is accounting except sorting stuff into categories? and b) helpful in understanding stuff.  If you’re starting to worry about me, I’ll offer this: I like to note how much astonishing variation there is even within categories, and I always leave room for the uncategorizable, while feeling some affection and pride for those things that escape the pigeonholes. )

Part 1 deals with my favorites, the green florals.  Yeah yeah yeah, go ahead and roll your eyes at my unrepentant girliness now, I’ll wait. 

You done? Okay.  Green florals: notes of grass, leaves, galbanum, and/or unspecified “green” notes, with floral notes in lighter proportion than in your typical floral, and generally a quiet woody base. The green notes tend to be the focus here, lingering with the florals. Here’s a list of some that I enjoy, followed by others that I either haven’t tried yet, or that just weren’t my thing but may be yours.

Parfums de Nicolai Le Temps d’une Fete (galbanum, green notes, narcissus, hyacinth, cedar, sandalwood, patchouli, opoponax) Has more presence in the woody base than with many green florals, but nevertheless smells green all the way through. I love the narcissus. This one has never failed to make me happy.
Guerlain Chamade (aldehydes, galbanum, hyacinth, jasmine, rose, mimosa, sandalwood, vetiver, benzoin, vanilla… basically your everything-but-the-kitchen sink Guerlain formula) Has an absolute ton of galbanum with a few light florals up top; you wait and wait and wait for it to morph, but eventually it does – from green to gold. A romantic scent, I think.
Jacomo Silences (galbanum, with rose and iris and a bit of moss) In some ways very like Heure Exquise, but has more rose than the HE edt, and the moss keeps it green longer. Silvery-green as lamb’s ears plant.
Chanel No. 19 (galbanum, rose, jasmine, iris, moss, vetiver) I’ve raved about this one. One of my very favorites, reviewed here.
Annick Goutal Heure Exquise (galbanum, rose, iris, vetiver) Another very lovely one, reviewed here.
Ivoire de Balmain (aldehydes, galbanum, green notes, hyacinth, jasmine, rose, muguet, iris, orchid, oakmoss, benzoin, woods and amber) After a classic green-floral start, becomes quite classically floral with jasmine-rose-iris-orchid – and after that, has one of the loveliest, honeyed-wood drydowns I’ve ever smelled. A real shape-shifter, and maybe shouldn’t be in this category at all because the drydown is so unbelievably rich. The first three times I wore it, I was really distracted by the soapy-floral-with-moss heart. The fourth time, the weather was humid and I fell in love with it.
Lancome Climat (aldehydes, green notes, violet, muguet, jasmine, rose, narcissus, sandalwood, vetiver, and a bit of civet for oomph). Another extremely lovely, ladylike-with-edge scent. Love this one too; it’s reviewed here.
Lauren by Ralph Lauren – I like the vintage, which focuses on a lovely rose-violet, with a hint of muguet. The current version is green with muguet; it’s not terrible, but it’s not distinctive either.
Kenzo Parfum d’Ete vintage version in the frosted glass upright leaf bottle – some greens with muguet, freesia, hyacinth, and a buncha other florals (rose, peony, jasmine, ylang, narcissus, cyclamen). The later version, in clear glass reclining leaf bottle, is nice too, and even greener. It’s been streamlined down to green notes with some tart fruits, hyacinth, muguet, jasmine, cyclamen and lotus. It’ll be listed with the citrus/fruity green scents.
Frederic Malle En Passant (green notes, watery/cucumber notes, lilac, and fresh bread) Very lovely, quiet springlike thing, evanescent as clouds.
Septimanie Pavillon des Fleurs (green notes, a very grassy jasmine, and a few other florals) This is a beautiful jasmine scent, very green, like an entire garden floating around my head. I swapped the sample thinking that I’d never spend $110 on a 50ml bottle, but I think I need another sample.
Jean Patou Vacances (galbanum, green notes, lilac, hyacinth) A little soapy, but smells cool and green and lilac-y all at once. A very tender smell.
Soivohle Daybreak Violin (mint, hay, may lily, lilac, moss and musk) Really liked this one, with its cool morning-dew feeling.
Bvlgari Eau Parfumee au The’ Vert (green tea, with a bit of herbs and citrus up top, and a classical rose-jasmine heart, and a quiet woodsy base) I find this ubiquitous urban-mommy scent pleasant but dullllll to the nth degree.
DSH Perfumes Rose Vert (galbanum, leafy greens and herbs, followed by an excellent rose absolute and a small amount of sandalwood)  Lovely, lovely stuff – unexpectedly green for a long time, and very refreshing.
Corday or Max Factor Toujours Moi (green notes,  orange blossom, jasmine) Vintage only, by those two manufacturers only.  The Dana version is a synthetic mess.  This is a happy, relaxed, pretty scent. 
Kai (green notes plus gardenia/tuberose) Very nice, if a bit simple; reviewed here.
Parfums DelRae Amoureuse (green & citrus notes, with tuberose, jasmine, honey, and oakmoss) Smells like the flowers of the black locust tree to me. Very, very beautiful. Everyone says this one’s loud – but to me, it’s not. Of course, I was using a sample vial, so this one may be a decant-and-dab. That’s okay with me.
Balmain Vent Vert (a ton of galbanum, jasmine, rose)  By all rights, I should have adored this one. I didn’t. I believe the version I got hold of was the 1990 reformulation (generally considered wearable), in parfum. It was quite pleasant, particularly at first, but I never grew to love it. Eventually I swapped it.

Here are some that are on my to-try list. If I do get to them, I’ll come back and update.

Crown Perfumery Crown Bouquet discontinued (galbanum, green notes, and white flowers – jasmine, tuberose, muguet), described as “the greenest of green florals.” My unsniffed bottle is on the way as I type.  Update:  I loooooove this, particularly the juicy-crunchy green leaves in the opening.  Just gorgeous.

Annick Goutal Grand Amour   I have a small bottle of this I haven’t tested yet. Sprayed on paper, it starts out very like Chamade.  Update:  it doesn’t stay that way.  I like it, but I wish it had more presence.  It goes: galbanum, hyacinth, very quiet myrrh, nothing.  Eh.

Miller Harris Jasmin Vert  Lovely thing.  Less “vert” and more “jasmin” than I’d been expecting, although it is a very beautiful quiet floral.  Narcissus is listed in the notes, but I don’t actually smell it.  I personally can always do with more narcissus, and I’d have loved more of it here.  All the same, very nice.

The Different Company Un Parfum de Charmes et Feuilles
Diptyque L’Ombre dans L’Eau   Very pretty.  Tart, bracing green notes to start, and then a soft rose. Nice.
Gres Cabotine
Paco Rabanne Calandre
CB I Hate Perfume I am a Dandelion  ** could be classified as Leafy/Herbal
Estee Lauder Dazzling Silver
Ineke Balmy Days & Sundays
L’Artisan Fleur de Narcisse LE   – Rather haylike, with some narcissus.  Perhaps I expected too much, or perhaps I was taken aback by the tobacco-and-woods angle, but I did not love it.  Extremely pleasant, but to my mind not worth the $$$$. Other people have suggested that this is a leafy/herbal scent, but I did not perceive it as being very green at all.
Kenzo Eau de Fleur de Thé
Chanel Bel Respiro  ** could be classified as Leafy/Herbal.  This is, to my nose, a classic cologne with a few more florals than usual, topped with a lovely soft green leaves-and-galbanum note.  Lasts about ten minutes on me.

Chanel Une Fleur de Chanel
Floris Edwardian Bouquet
Givenchy Extravagance d’Amarige
Weil Bambou
Yves Rocher Nature (not Desir de Nature, which is more citrusy)

Gucci Envy  HATED it.  Nasty metallic kick-you-in-the teeth bitter spinster librarian thing.

Comme des Garcons Series 1 Leaves: Lily  Ditto what I said about Gucci Envy.
Alfred Sung Paradise
Not recommended; smells like cheap crap to me.
Penhaligon’s Bluebell After a nice galbanum and hyacinth start, becomes very synthetic and extremely unpleasant.
Hampton Sun Privet Bloom Has a pretty, leafy green start, but after half an hour smells like industrial cleaners, with a Muguet Gone Wrong.

Do feel free to share your favorite FLORAL green scents. We’ll be getting to herbal things like Mandragore, and fruity things like Calyx, and mossy things like Any Chypre You Wish to Name, in due course, so I beg your patience with those recommendations.

Many thanks to those patient cataloguers of information at fragrantica.com, Now Smell This blog, and Perfumes: The Guide, which I bought at amazon.com.  I grabbed bits of data from all those sources, put them in the blender, hit spin, and passed them on to you.  Aren’t you grateful?  Good.  Go check out the sources (and I’ll again encourage anybody who’s interested in perfume to spend $15 on the new version of Perfumes: The Guide, which is well, well worth it).

Top image: Green Flowers (Hellebores), from KaCey97007.  Second image: Our other green flower, from canong2fan. Third image: Soft as a lamb’s ear, from dphock.  Fourth image: Green flowers, from fourshortwords. Bottom image: Green flower, from Piet Grobler.  All images from flickr.com.

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Wednesday, Mar. 10: Warm temperature, soft air. I want green scents right now, particularly after the success of Silences yesterday. Testing Miller et Bertaux #3 Green, green, green and green on one wrist, and Parfums DelRae Amoureuse on the other. These are successes as well, although Green has probably got a tiny bit too much citrus in it for me to really love. It reminds me a little bit of Mandragore, minus the peppery parts – which I liked well enough but didn’t find compelling. Not my personal style, I guess.

Thursday, Mar. 11: Rain today, but the temps got up to 59 F. Niiiice. It smells good outside – like the earth is taking a deep breath. I retested Amoureuse to see if it was as lovely today as it was yesterday (it was), and also tested one of my DSH samples that’s been lounging unappreciated in the sample box. It’s called Wedding Bouquet, and it was the list of notes that drew me: Bergamot/ stephanotis, gardenia, lily, and baby white rosebuds/ musk, orris, sandalwood. It’s very beautiful – a well-blended, serene white floral as smooth as satin, very calming and peaceful.

My own wedding bouquet was all white as well: white rosebuds, lilies, carnations, stephanotis, and lily of the valley. You don’t see stephanotis very often, but I think it’s lovely.

Friday, Mar. 12: Tested two: Cacharel Eden and Penhaligon’s Night-scented Stock. Eden was a FAIL, and the Stock one merely pleasant. Shame… I thought I’d like them both. Just goes to show that you can’t tell by the notes whether it’s going to be for you or not. (Although I have occasionally tested scents based on notes and had them turn out excellent. My two home runs? PdN Vanille Tonka and MFK Lumiere Noire pf.) SOTAfternoon: Mariella Burani, my go-to fragrance when I don’t have any particular mood in mind and I just want to smell nice.

The CEO took the 4230 tractor down to the John Deere dealership to have some hydraulic seals, or some other esoteric piece of machinery, repaired. Should be fixed by Monday. And he managed to repair the wheel hub on the 4240, so that tractor is operational. Only the 4040 is left in the middle of a field, inoperable due to the fire. It happens to be stuck on one of the fields farthest away from a road – or even flat ground. It will have to be towed to the road. I hope the 4440 is up to it – it’s in good shape and probably the most powerful tractor we’ve got, but it’s not 4WD.

In case you’re wondering, our newest model tractor is that JD 4440. How old is it? Well, let’s just say that it came with an optional 8-track player. I’m totally serious here: 1977.

Saturday, Mar. 13: Cleaned the house with the kids and The CEO, then posted the incredibly humongous “Bouquet of Roses” reference post. Went back to add to it four times. How is it possible that there are approximately 175 rose-focused scents currently in production? Sure, there are scents on the list that are vintage/discontinued, but not more than a handful, and I didn’t bother to list all the YSL flankers for Paris, Baby Doll Paris and Elle – not to mention all the Stella flankers.

SOTD: vintage Lauren by Ralph Lauren, the one that is a rose scent, as opposed to the current version, which isn’t. It smells quite a bit like a good floral soap – green notes, rose, and violet, with a light woody background. Pretty stuff. Maybe I ought to introduce my mother to it – she’s such a sucker for anything that smells like she’s just washed with one of those French fine-milled soaps scented with flowers. Bookworm liked it and asked what it was – maybe she’ll borrow it sometime. It does strike me as a very Proper Young Lady fragrance. The only other scent she really likes is Donna Karan Gold.

Taz, who is addicted to Animal Planet, came downstairs this evening to where I was working on the computer, wearing his Batman towel robe and making high-pitched squeaking noises. “What are you doing?” I asked him. “I’m finding my way by echolocation,” he enunciated carefully. “Like bats.” Batty kid… I don’t know where he gets it, but he is fun.

Sunday, Mar. 14: SOTM: Clarins Par Amour, a nice gentle woody rose. Lyric it ain’t, but then what else is? Nothing, that’s what. SOTA: JHaG Citizen Queen.

Monday, March 15: SOTD: Bond #9 Broadway NiteTocade on steroids. With a Baywatch-worthy boob job and glitter fingernails. Eek. I thought Tocade was on the verge of too much, but not compared to Broadway Nite. SOTE: Jacomo Silences. How is it that this was so wrong in the fall, but so lovely now? Weather?

The boys had to help me put a calf back into a field this evening – there was a hole in a fence just big enough for a few-days-old calf to get through, so there he was on the farm road, with his mama bellowing her head off on the other side of the fence, and the poor calf with no idea in the world how to get back through. We walked him down the road and in through the gate, and boy, were those two glad to see each other. (Baby calves, let me tell you, are completely adorable.  Also, rather stupid.)

Tuesday, March 16: Chillier today, in the mid-40’s with wind and “scattered showers,” as the weather dudes say. Tabac Aurea today. Mmm. Except that I think I sprayed a bit too much, and toward the drydown I’m getting asphyxiated by patchouli. Dang. It. I should have asked for a bottle of “one-third the usual patchouli formula” from Laurie at SSS, rather than “one-half”… Does my skin amp patchouli, or is it my nose?? Or both? I didn’t notice it until I’d had the scent on for a good four hours. Update: eight hours after application, the patch has calmed down again. Whew. I would hate to start hating this scent, since I love it so much. I suppose I’ll have to apply more lightly.

I am Kind of Bummed. Looks like The CEO is not going to get that job in the office of the state Commissioner of Agriculture. He’s bummed, I’m bummed… the guy that did get the job is a friend, and very well suited for it, in experience, temperament, and skills. He’s gonna be great. (Go Matt!) I can’t even complain that politics or nepotism played a role in Matt’s appointment – he’s a forthrightly excellent choice.

We just… didn’t know he was up for it. We’d heard that he wasn’t interested, and would like to keep his current job. (The agricultural community in this state is a fairly small pond: everybody knows everybody else, and a shocking amount of everybody else’s business.) So when The CEO got an email from the Sec of Ag announcing the appointment, we didn’t know whether to be happy for Matt or disappointed for The CEO. I suppose we’re both. And I suppose I think less of myself for being so disappointed. I was kind of looking forward to moving out of Redneckville and living in a place with an art gallery, for a few years at least, so now I’m both disappointed and unappreciative of the good things we do have, and feeling guilty about not being satisfied with this perfectly nice life that some people would trade their right arms for…

Top photo: Vintage perfume bottles by kayla coo.  Middle photo: Stephanotis (Madagascar jasmine) by tammybeck.  Lower photo: Flying Bat by Chi Lui.  All photos from flickr.com.

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