Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for September, 2011

This fragrance, frequently deemed the most striking and original of the six “Les Exclusifs de Chanel” released in 2007, has been reviewed by many, many perfume bloggers… but not by me. Robin at Now Smell This reviewed it in the context of the Exclusifs collection; Victoria at Bois de Jasmin reviewed it as a stand-alone. Denyse at Grain de Musc reviewed it as reminding her of Great Chypres We Have Known, several in succession (and so, famously, did Tania Sanchez in Perfumes: The Guide, in a small difference of opinion from Luca Turin). Recently, Brian at I Smell Therefore I Am reviewed it as fulfilling a brief that simply said “elegance” and “the most Chanel of all the Chanels.”

Looks like it’s my turn. I’m reviewing it from the perspective of having heard that 31 RC, as I’ll call it, was “good,” and as a newbie to perfume, I should try it. Dear Daisy sent me a sample, and I had to agree: it is good. Shortly thereafter I got in on a bottle split, and own a sadly-depleted 10ml decant.*  Incidentally, the Les Exclusifs were originally only available in 200ml bottles, selling at about $210, but have recently been made available in 75ml bottles, at $110.

31 Rue Cambon, named for the apartment which Coco Chanel kept Much has been made of 31 RC being the “no-oakmoss chypre,” or the first “modern chypre.” I should probably mention that I’m not one of those people who throws tantrums about my chypres having their teeth pulled. (I know, I know, it hurts to lose the things you love, and if the use of rose in perfumes were suddenly restricted the way oakmoss has been, you’d better bet I’d be pitching seventeen kinds of hissy fit.) But then, I only love chypres if they are heavily floral, and I’m not all that bothered by less oakmoss. I’ve always said, if a fragrance has that bitter edge to it, even if it has less oakmoss than a “proper” chypre should, it’s a chypre in my book. If you’re a big fan of the bitter greenies like Bandit – or Diorella, even – 31 Rue Cambon will not seem like much of a chypre to you.

And in point of fact, it doesn’t seem like all that much of a chypre to me. I would classify it alongside Guerlain’s lovely (and discontinued, grrrr) Attrape-Coeur and my darling Teo Cabanel Alahine as a Floral Amber.

Notes for 31 Rue Cambon, cobbled from reviews and the Chanel website: bergamot, jasmine, iris, patchouli, labdanum. This is surely not a complete list; the fragrance is far more complex than that, and I suspect that the amber note is not straight-up labdanum but rather the Ambre 83 base that Luca Turin mentions as being the centerpiece of Attrape-Coeur. It is, however, a list that mentions every note discernible to me.   Some reviewers mention pepper, but I don’t pick up on it.

Now that I’ve gotten the “to chypre or not to chypre” discussion out of the way, what’s 31 RC actually like? It starts off with bright citrusy notes of lemon and bergamot, with just a tiny hint of bitter-green, and for just a moment or two I think of Chanel Cristalle, that classic citrus chypre (which, for the record, I do not love). After the first five minutes, I’m already smelling amber underneath the citrus. It’s the same rich, plush-but-not-too-sweet amber note that you get with those other floral- amber fragrances I already mentioned, and which I also smell in Mitsouko (another chypre I don’t love). 31 Rue Cambon seems to slide effortlessly from citrus into jasmine, and from there into gorgeous satiny iris, but everything always underpinned with the soft amber. There is a bare hint of patchouli in the base, but – thank goodness – it’s the aged, green/herbal kind, and merely a suggestion anyway, not enough to bludgeon me. The fragrance is seamless in its transitions, and even after the citrus and jasmine are gone, they have left an impression on my brain, so that even the far drydown carries with it a suggestion of the way 31 RC smelled from the beginning.

The entire scent is a perfect model of elegance – clean lines, nothing sticking out, nothing overemphasized. It’s not the crisp elegance of a perfectly-pressed white blouse or the stern perfection of a tight chignon with not a hair out of place, however. It’s far more comfortable and effortless than crisp and restrained, and it imparts a graceful, smiling demeanor. When I wear it, I feel rich – and, somehow, nicer.

31 RC is thick, like a full chord, and yet somehow airy and weightless. This is a quality it seems to share with Chanel No. 5 – it’s lushly sensual, and at the same time it is never too much. The seamlessness, the tactile satin effect, make it very easy to wear despite its fullness.

The one quibble I have with 31 RC is the same one that most people have with it: it’s a little too light. Chanel needs a parfum concentration of this. I keep seeing the prediction that they’re working on a parfum and it’ll be released any moment, but we’re now four years (almost five!) into the life of this scent, and there is no parfum available, nor any definite announcement of one coming to the market. Which makes me wonder if the balance goes off somehow when you try to strengthen the mixture. This makes me a little sad: I love Bois des Iles, too, but it’s so fleeting that the Les Exclusifs EdT just frustrates me. Knowing that the parfum is available, even if I can’t afford it, makes me feel a little better. 31 Rue Cambon does have a slightly stronger presence than Bois des Iles, and it does last for close to four hours on me, twice as long as BdI, but I have to snorfle my wrist to smell it for that last hour.

That said, I still think 31 RC is wonderful. “Distilled elegance” sounds about right to me as a short descriptor. I think I’m always going to want to have a small amount on hand, for wear when I feel I might need a reminder that I’m a worthy human being.

A few other reviews, besides the ones linked in the first paragraph (and I do mean a few – there are dozens more!):  Marina at Perfume-Smellin’ Things calls 31RC “austere, yet opulent,” and I’d agree wholeheartedly.  Dane at Pere de PierreAbigail at ISTIAThe Non-BlondeFor the Love of Perfume1000 Scents.  

* Here’s some further information on bottle splits (scroll down into the post), in case you’re not familiar with this wonderful opportunity for owning small amounts of full bottles you can’t afford. In my case, there are a lot of scents I’d love to own, but can’t swing $200 a pop; sometimes I don’t even want a whole bottle, and 5 or 10 ml is the perfect amount. Splits are the way to go, if possible. Robin at NST has more information, too.

Image of 31 Rue Cambon bottle from Fragrantica.  Image of Coco Chanel and Suzy Parker ca. 1957 from The Recessionista.

Read Full Post »

Brain Fail…

Update:  Please note that there will be a new review posted here on Friday by noon Eastern Daylight Time.   Things are a little busy around here… 

I meant to have another “An AldeHo Dishes” review for posting today.  I don’t have it.  I’ve been wearing Baghari, vintage and modern, and I have so little to say about it that there’s no point in even trying.  Also, I’m trying to get Taz’ room cleaned and in ready-to-paint condition, and I’m working on a difficult scene in the novel.

So I’m going to move on to another fragrance… Le Temps d’une Fete is calling me… and share another photo of my daughter and her sweetie in their Homecoming finery.  (It should be apparent why his nom de blog is Pretty Eyed Trumpet Boy.)

Read Full Post »

Yup, more aldehydes. This one is a favorite of our dear Daisy, Empress of Perfumista Enabling, and my small decant came from her.

P:TG review: *** aldehydic woody This combination of dry, talcum-powder wood and a slightly metallic, sweaty cast I find classical in feel and pleasingly aloof, and LT finds nerve-wracking in the extreme. Several fragrances in this vegetal, pale, unsweetened style have come down the pike in recent years, two by Pierre Bourdon (Ferré, Iris Poudre). This one from 2004 (the names means “soul mate”) by young perfumer Yann Vasnier seems both steely and mild-mannered, like a sort of woman you might have known whose soft, maternal build belies an icy manner. TS

(I’m still puzzled by the reference to Iris Poudre as being “vegetal” and “unsweetened.” “Pale” it may be, but in a white-angora-sweater sort of way, and it always strikes me as being fluffy and candy-sweet, due to the lovely benzoin in the base.)

But I digress. L’Ame Soeur, when I first started wearing this decant, struck me as being both fruity and aldehydic. Sometime around 8 months ago, I started smelling a faintly sour, celerylike twist in it every time I put it on. The celery is fleeting, thank goodness, but there is a saltiness to the scent that seems odd to me. I cannot pick out any florals, and the entire fragrance has a slick texture that I can’t quite put my finger on.

The notes, according to Divine’s website, include Bulgarian rose otto, ylang-ylang, jasmine, and ambergris. Unquestionably, there are also aldehydes, and I suggest a bit of vetiver as well. I don’t know if the ambergris note is ambreine, or ambrox, or cetalox, or what-have-you, but it is a salty-soapy note that reminds me quite a bit of Creed’s Fleurs de Bulgarie.

I’m still not sure whether I like L’Ame Soeur or not. I do know that I’d almost always go hunting one of my many other aldehydic floral scents when I want one. There is a strangely sour, salty cast to this fragrance that makes me think of Chinese food gone stale, and sometimes it bothers me more often than other times.

I’ll add a rating system. Scents of Scelf just added one, and it’s fun: pictures of the Harajuku Lovers fragrances, from 1 figure to 5. I’m not that clever, so I think I’ll go with stars or something equally clear but uninspiring… I’ll give L’Ame Soeur 2.5 stars. It ranges from “acceptable” to “below average.”  Other reviews of  L’Ame Soeur: Bois de Jasmin and Aromascope (brief), both of which are more favorable than this review!

Bottle image from Fragrantica.

Read Full Post »

In my teens and twenties, I’d have told you that I didn’t like aldehydes. I may have been affected by my mother’s use of Chanel No. 5, and by my disavowal of anything that Smells Like My Mother. Aldehydes are very much out of fashion these days, with only the occasional niche fragrance firm making use of them, and then only rarely.

But now I love them. There’s just something about aldehydes that say “proper perfume” to me, and I enjoy that little clean fizzy sparkle they can give to a scent, as well as the powdery cast they leave behind. I call myself an AldeHo these days; I’m always interested in trying new ones.

Earlier in the life of this blog, I reviewed several other aldehydic fragrances, including THE QUEEN ALDEHYDE, Chanel No. 5, as well as some others in that fragrance category. Click for reviews of Chanel No. 5, No. 5 Eau Premiere, Mariella Burani, Serge Lutens La Myrrhe, Guerlain Vega, Lanvin Arpege, Elizabeth Taylor White Diamonds, Ferre by Ferre, Frederic Malle Iris Poudre, Lancome Climat, and Coty L’Aimant (vintage). I’m proposing the occasional review of an aldehydic fragrance in this “AldeHo Dishes” series, on an irregular basis. Some of these reviews will be quick ones, and I’ll call them “thumbnail” reviews. Some will be more in-depth reviews. It will depend on how much time I’ve had with each fragrance, and how much I have to say about them.

Today’s quick fragrance review concerns the decidedly downmarket Coty Lady Stetson, praised by Tania Sanchez in Perfumes: The Guide, particularly in comparison to the far-pricier Chanel No. 22:

Lady Stetson sets out on an airy, slightly powdery peach. As time goes on… The Lady seems simply to relax. It’s a well-balanced structure of just enough amber, just enough floral, just enough peach, just enough soapy citrus to pull up a smile each time it comes to your attention. This fragrance smells great without showing off, and truth to tell, I prefer it to the Chanel. Now, if only the bottle weren’t so hideous.

I’m not a huge fan of Chanel No. 22 either (more on No. 22 to come), but my take on Lady Stetson is a little different.  And the bottle doesn’t bother me, either.  Coty is not a company where you pay for the packaging.

LS does start off with those sweet, powdery aldehydes – not enough to burn your nose, but they’re definitely present – as well as a lactonic peach note. I can’t pick out the florals, but they seem both classical in structure and mostly-synthetic in nature to me: rose and jasmine, perhaps, but not the real expensive stuff. As LS develops and the aldehydes go away, I get more and more peach, amber, and musk. The musk is rather pleasant – the “skin” version rather than the “laundry” version – but I find the amber and peach far too sweet for my taste. I suspect that my skin often renders amber notes too sweet, and not everyone has that problem.

Overall, my complaint with Lady Stetson is that it smells nice, but cheap. I can’t pick out any natural floral notes, and I find it inoffensive but boring. It has a “PTA Volunteer Mom” sort of vibe to it. Although Lady Stetson was launched in 1986, the year I graduated from high school, it smells like the PTA Moms of my own youth: dull, safe, stodgy, but comforting and pleasant.   It smells nothing like the “declaration of independence” this ad touts:

Notes according to Fragrantica: aldehydes, peach, tangerine, rose, ylang-ylang, carnation, jasmine, sandalwood, amber, and oakmoss.  I don’t smell any citrus, and I definitely don’t get any oakmoss out of it at all.  Read Angela’s review at Now Smell This for yet another take on Lady Stetson. 

Rating: ***  Lady Stetson has a couple of undeniable assets: it smells decent, it’s easily available, and it’s pretty inexpensive. I sprayed from a tester at my local Wal-Mart. A 30ml bottle will run you $16.50 there, a huuuuge bargain… if you like it.

Images are from Fragrantica.

Read Full Post »

Fall Leaves 1 by C.A. Mullhaupt at flickr

Monday, Sept. 19: Chilly. SOTD: the wonderful, happy-making Parfums de Nicolaï Vanille Tonka. (I got it on my sweater, squee!)

Tuesday, Sept. 20: Cloudy and chilly again. SOTD: Liz Zorn Centennial, the floral chypre Musette was raving about over on Perfume Posse last week. I nabbed one of the last ones while they were on sale and still available. It’s gorgeous.

Wednesday, Sept. 21: Rainy. The yard needs mowing, but of course I can’t mow in the rain. This is a boring week, so far… which is okay, the weekend is likely to be crazy busy. SOTD: Soivohle (Liz Zorn) Centennial again, with a tiny test patch of her Love Speaks Primeval on the back of one hand. It’s easy to tell that LSP grew out of Centennial, which was formerly known as Historical Chypre; they blend very nicely together, but LSP is spicier, slightly less floral and peachy, and it has that drrty-grindy thing (fossilized hyrax droppings, a sort of substitute for civet) in there that is sort of deliciously disgusting.

We finally have a plan for Bookworm’s Homecoming hairstyle, and it’s one I can do myself. Whew. She didn’t want a hairstylist to do it, and she’s all stressed about getting back from the track meet on time to get ready for the dance anyway.

Thursday, Sept. 22: Warmer today, and after the fog burned off this morning, the afternoon has been sunny and pleasant. SOTD: Liz Zorn Centennial. I think I’m addicted…

Mowed half the yard before I had to go pick Bookworm up from band practice. Gaze went out to feed the calf and then found out that Jeff the hired guy had taken her to a new cow mama whose calf had come too early and died. SOTEvening: Mary Greenwell Plum. The more often I wear it, the more “pink” it seems – but not in a stupid Barbie-pink sort of way, more of a romantic pink glow.

Friday, Sept. 23: Rain rain rain. Hope it clears up before the Homecoming game… SOTD: DSH Chypre layered with Mary Greenwell Plum, yummy. Good writing session today. The rain left around noon, and I mowed the rest of the yard. It looked like beautiful weather for the football game, and I left the house with Bookworm’s dinner (on Fridays she goes to cross-country practice before the band convenes for the game and has no time to come home), it was sunny. By the time I got to the high school, almost ten minutes later, it was starting to rain again. It bucketed down, and then cleared up in time for me to go help set up the visitor’s side concession stand. At halftime, we were down 7-21, and of course the band played for the announcement of the homecoming court, and it started raining again. The uniforms are completely soaked… not to mention the instruments. Aargh.

Saturday, Sept. 24: Homecoming dance tonight! Bookworm was off early to her cross-country meet two hours away, and the rest of us cleaned house. SOTD: Shalimar Light. The CEO went out to canvass for support in the School Board election, and I picked up her date’s boutonniere at the florist, and IT RAINED. I was feeling dire about the weather and Bookworm’s bare shoulders. She got back from the meet pleased with her race – she’d come in 21st in a large field, and one of her teammates finished tenth. So then we did her hair and got her all dressed and made up and scented in Hanae Mori Butterfly without messing up the hair (I’d forgotten how difficult that is!). And then the sun came out, and she and PETBoy put flowers on each other and headed off in his white pickup to meet friends for dinner and then the dance…

Putting flowers on each other, photo by The CEO

Sunday, Sept. 25: Cloudy cool day, perfect for Liz Zorn Centennial. Bookworm doesn’t like it. Gaze and The CEO both do, The CEO commenting that “it’s just pretty. A Miss America contestant should wear that, just to remind everyone how pretty she is.” I’m definitely getting addicted to it the way I am to Mary Greenwell Plum; they’d probably play nicely together, by the way.

The CEO and I made sure to be out of range of the front porch last night when Bookworm came home, but after I heard the door close and her date’s truck leave, I came upstairs to find out how the evening went: great, apparently. I kissed her cheek, expecting to smell her Hanae Mori, but instead smelled PETBoy’s cologne, probably transferred to her cheek during some slow dance or other. (By the way, early scouting reports say that it is True Religion, which Fragrantica calls an aromatic fougere. It’s a classic Guy Smell, quiet and reliable and pleasant. I approve.)

My allergies are killing me. I’ve had that icepick-to-the-sinuses kind of headache all day. I am so grateful for Sudafed!

Read Full Post »

I blame Musette. And ScentScelf.

These two ladies are some of my Favorite Bloggers Ever, and I love to read what they write.  Sometimes they move me, and sometimes they totally crack me up. We don’t always love the same things, although I share a love of Big White Florals with Musette and an appreciation of Greenies with ScentScelf, and I do know their real-life names. Word is that they live not that far from Chicago (as compared to the rest of the country), and both are devotees of  Liz Zorn Perfumes.

I cast a self-righteous pointer finger of condemnation in each woman’s general direction.

Because the other week, on one of the Facebook perfumista group pages, ScentScelf was nattering on about this wonderful Historical Chypre thing (which I always seem to read as Hysterical Chypre, probably because I am Not Having a Good Week, probably because I am approaching at least Pre-Menopausal Insanity, thus the Hysterical womb reference, which is probably ironic given that my teenage daughter is suddenly out there in the dating world, which hardly seems possible given that I frequently think of her as being nineteen-and-a-half inches long with nothin’ but peach-colored peach fuzz on her beautiful hazelnut-shaped head) .

Anyway, I noticed the chypre reference because that’s what I’ve been craving lately. I checked the LZ website, thinking about a sample, and then found that I couldn’t sample this one except as part of a set of six, and I’d already tried one of the set and didn’t like it (Oolong Ti), and three of the others sounded very Not Me by the notes, and that was bad odds so I forgot about it.

And thennn, Musette referred to Centennial in her recent post about craving chypres lately (where have I heard that before?), and she followed up that glowing reference with the shocking news that Centennial and several others in its line at Liz Zorn/Soivohle were ON SALE.

So I bought a bottle.

Soivohle Oudh Lacquer (couldn't find a pic of the Retro Collection, and my camera's being temperamental today)

At discounted niche/indie prices, it was still $18 for an 11 ml bottle of eau de parfum, which is not ridiculous, but still iffy for an unsniffed thing that I could wind up hating. And this package shows up the other day, and it has a little box in it that’s filled with a bottle wrapped in this exquisitely textured blue paper, a real joy to open.

So I opened it and spritzed.

Smells like Cachet,” I said to myself. I wore Prince Matchabelli Cachet, from the drugstore, when I was a teenager. Didn’t love it the way I did Chloe, but it was nice, and I decided that I’d give Centennial a real chance.

Liz Zorn’s website says this about Centennial: Otherwise known as our Historical Chypre, is a throw back to early 20th century Floral Chypres, with notes of Rose, Jasmine and Orange Blossom, wrapped in classic chypre veil. Now, you know me: I adore me some florals. I live in them. I never feel that they overwhelm me or out-girly me. I do not love those Fierce Green Chypres, Bandit and Scherrer and the like. They skeer me a little. They’re too mean. Miss Dior kept trying to shiv me when I first opened her vial, and I had to wrassle her to get her to behave.

But you throw me a floral with a chypre backbone, and I am happy. The intelligence and aquiline features of a chypre in the pretty silk-satin dress of good natural florals seems just about perfect to me, and Centennial does not disappoint.

Centennial opens up with a smack of bergamot and a little waft of what I would swear were aldehydes, as well as a hint of the inky-green, juicy moss-and-labdanum stuff you get in real chypres. It’s pretty bloomy at this stage, but two spritzes keeps it within my self-imposed three-foot radiating limit. It’s only after about half an hour that I really notice the florals, and they are so well-blended that I can’t even tease them out from the big bouquet individually. I think that I smell something else in there, too, a note that smells quite dirty to me. It’s not civet, or at least I don’t think it is – it could be narcissus, perhaps, with the barnyard connotion it sometimes has, something overripe. There’s a sweetness to the floral mix that I attribute to the orange blossom and maybe just a sweet-banana bit of ylang-ylang, and it balances out that inky pine green of the chypre base, and it is really lovely. There is also, at the end of this stage, a suedey peachy thing over the inky pine that reminds me just a bit of Mitsouko (which I do not love, remember?) but softer, closer to the skin.

After about three and a half or four hours, Centennial is down to a skin scent, a delightfully soft bathed-and-talcumed smell that reminds me of the far drydown of 1980s Coty Chypre or of Miss Dior parfum, the vintage stuff, with its wonderful contrast of skin warmth and cool powder. It is huffable, preferably with nose about a centimeter from skin, and really almost sexy, I’d say, in a cozy yet intellectual sort of way.

Centennial does not last much past the four-hour mark. It is a little less long-lived than I’d like, especially for an EdP, but I know that mostly-natural perfumes tend to last a shorter period of time on my skin, and the drydown is so pretty that I forgive it for being short.

I went to pick up Gaze from school about an hour after spritzing Centennial; he’d had after-school band practice. He got into the car and commented, “Hey, you smell really good. I like it.” I asked him if it reminded him of anything, and he thought for a moment before responding, “It makes me think of an old church just letting out after the service. In the summer. Like… old ladies’ perfume, but like outside too, sort of fresh.” Oakmoss must remind him of church in some way; I remember that his comments on Roja Dove Diaghilev, another chypre, mentioned “old churches” as well (but were less complimentary!).

I am rather sad to report that Centennial has sold out. I have been addicted to it for the past three days, only abandoning its dregs for a hit of DSH Chypre, or the modern floral chypre Mary Greenwell Plum, or my sample of Liz Zorn’s based-on-Centennial fragrance called Love Speaks Primeval, the one with Africa stone in it.

My outstretched pointer fingers have become a potential embrace, just waiting for the time when I might meet either Musette or ScentScelf face to face. I want to thank them – for the laughs, the thoughtful connections made, the word “palimpsest,” the cow emoticons, the whole bit.

And for Centennial. You gals got it right. Thanks. Really.

Photo of Soivohle Oudh Lacquer from Nathan Branch.

Read Full Post »

John Deere 4440 and round baler, seen behind the Morning Glory Vine That Ate the Porch

Monday, Sept. 12: Another beautiful day. I finally finished sewing the ribbon trim to Bookworm’s Homecoming dress, yay! She’s going to be so lovely in it. SOTMorning: a test sample of Sonoma Scent Studio’s upcoming scent which goes by the working name of “Classic.” It was gorgeously floral for some time, and then went all celery-vetiverish and vanilla. I’m betting it’s me, because on paper it is stunningly sandalwoody.

SOTE: Le Temps d’une Fete, beautiful. Attended Band Booster meeting… SO MUCH WORK goes into what happens on the field at the football game; most people have no idea. (Okay, to be fair, I have no idea what the football parents of the Touchdown Club do – they probably do fundraisers, too, and help haul around the equipment. But the football team is better funded, that much I know.)

Update: Oops, misjudged the strap length on one side. Must fix. Also, the shoes she liked two weeks ago no longer suit her: too unstable, and they’re going to rub her pinky toes. Arrrrrrgh. Really, she just needs practice walking in heels! I started wearing heels to church when I was, oh, 11 or 12, and was awkward in them for awhile, but I wanted to learn. She doesn’t want to practice, and she thinks the problem is in the shoes. They aren’t even high heels – they’re 1 ¾” tall, and they’re on the chunky side, somewhere between “kitten” and “court” heels.

Tuesday, Sept. 13: SOTD: Vintage Balmain Jolie Madame extrait. I’m spoiling myself. This vtg extrait is both incredibly floral and incredibly leathery, and completely ladylike in an unpowdery way. Also retesting SSS “Classic” on the back of my hand. No celery today, yippee.

SOTEvening: Cuir de Lancome.

Did a little sniffery with Taz before dinner, and gave him several so-called masculine scents to sniff, trying to find out his preferences. He’s got a birthday coming up in a few weeks (as does Gaze, 8 days later). C&S No. 88 he didn’t like; nor did he like DSH Lucky Clover. He said Acqua di Gio and Dior Homme Sport were just “okay,” and he did not like Hermes Bel Ami and YSL M7 at all. What did he like? Shalimar Light and Chanel Egoiste. Wonder if I could find an Egoiste smell-alike for him… there’s no way I’m buying a Chanel for an 11-year-old! Maybe I could search Fragrantica for a woody-spicy fragrance that isn’t expensive. Hmm.

Wednesday, Sept. 14: Mowed grass. There won’t be too many more times to do that; the growth has already slowed quite a bit. SOTD: Champagne de Bois.

Thursday, Sept. 15: Cool front moving in! SOTD: Coty Chypre on wrists, and DSH Chypre on inner forearms. Lovely stuff. Finished hemming Bookworm’s new jeans. After her conniption fit ther other day about her Homecoming shoes, I bought a different batch of shoes for her to try. She likes one pair that has heels a trifle lower, and thinks she might choose them instead of the other pair. I like them both, and although I think the first pair is slightly prettier, I’m not the one wearing them… sigh. I should be glad she’s in any heels at all.

(Thank goodness for Zappos and OnlineShoes! She has teeny feet, and nobody in this area carries size 5 for women. Any size 5s I can find locally – and there aren’t many! – tend to be little-girl shoes. Luckily, she takes a size 6 in running shoes, or we’d be in trouble there too.)

Community Chorus rehearsal went pretty well. SOTEvening: Caron Parfum Sacre, lovely cozy stuff.

 

PCHS tubas rockin' it to "Hey, Baby," at the football game, photo by Nicole Ward

Friday, Sept. 16: Did some bookkeeping stuff and laundry and a bit of cleaning, since I’m planning to be gone all afternoon Saturday. SOTD: SSS Champagne de Bois. Also, got called in as a substitute band chaperone for the away football game tonight, so I was gone from 3 pm to past midnight. (And we lost, 38-28. Ow. The football team is now 0 for 4. The band, OTOH, was great.)

Saturday, Sept. 17: Cleaned house – well, to be honest, I gave it “a lick and a promise,” as my grandmother always called any half-hearted attempt. After lunch, I dropped Bookworm off at school for marching band quick rehearsal before they left for their competition. The CEO managed to score two tickets to the Virginia Tech football game, and it was Taz’ turn to go, so those two headed off for the game while Gaze and I went to my parents’ house. He stayed to watch the game on TV with my dad (another VT alumnus), while Mom and I went to watch the band competition, which was being hosted by my own high school. SOTD: SSS Champagne de Bois, still on my band shirt from last night, with a tiny layering of Tabac Aurea as well. Nice.

It was actually tough to be there at my old school, hearing cadences played, and not marching. I don’t miss high school much. But I miss marching band. I had terrific friends there, even better maybe than my choir friends or youth group friends. And I always loved cadence; it still makes my blood itch and my feet want to move.

Bookworm’s school did very well. The show was the cleanest I’ve seen it performed yet. This competition is early in the season and designed as a clinic – i.e., for the purpose of providing bands with judging and constructive criticism to help shape the rest of the competition season. We were gratified to notice that PCHS received the highest score of the day, a quarter of a point better than that really big band from North Carolina. I’m so proud.

Sunday, Sept. 18: Since we didn’t actually take a family vacation this summer, we’d promised the boys that we’d take them to the amusement park (Carowinds, on the border between North and South Carolina, about two hours’ drive away). Today shaped up to be really great for it: temps in the 70s, mostly cloudy. Very comfortable weather, and the park isn’t crowded in the fall, so you can ride pretty much anything you want, with very little waiting in line. PETBoy went with us, and honestly, deserved a gold star or two for hanging with Bookworm, who is a roller coaster fiend. I like roller coasters myself, but there are a couple that I don’t enjoy at this park. PETBoy rode them with her, and even rode once with Taz, just so I could sit out the wooden coaster that gives me a headache. SOTD: Balenciaga Paris, which is quite nice: violet leaf, violet, comfortable tonka-musk drydown. I’ll probably use up my sample (thanks, Undina!) and enjoy it, and never give it another thought.

Got home very late and gratefully collapsed into the sheets wearing Shalimar Light.

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »

%d bloggers like this: