Dear Scent Diary, December 15-22

Tuesday, Dec. 15: Parfums de Nicolai Vanille Tonka. I adore this scent – it makes me so happy. Instant good mood. I had nearly forgotten about it, actually, and then I put on my green sweater, the one that’s the color of apple leaves in summer, a little too blue to be spring green. I’d worn VT the last time I wore this sweater, and the turtleneck smelled faintly of it. It made me smile, so I reached for the decant bottle. I was cheerful all day.

Wednesday, Dec. 16: Caron Parfum Sacré. Weather chilly. Every time I wear PS, I think – gosh, why don’t I just live in this stuff? It’s a cashmere sweater. It’s gorgeous. (And cheap, wink wink.)

Thursday, Dec. 17: Tom Ford Black Orchid Voile de Fleur. (I hate typing that out. It’s such a stupid name.) Weather chilly; VdF is plum and edgy white flowers – beautiful, but they’re wearing Goth eye makeup or something – and then a milky-woody drydown that makes up for keeping me wondering when those white flowers were going to plunge in their stiletto. Wait. That sounds as if I don’t really like this stuff; I do. It’s just, well, edgy.

Friday, Dec. 18: Dior Dolce Vita in parfum. Weather cold and sort of itchy, pre-snow. It began to snow about 3pm and didn’t stop all night. The weather guys were saying 18 inches, but we only got about 9 or 10. DV was gorgeous, all fruit liqueur and creamy ylang and woods.

Saturday, Dec. 19: an unplanned perfume-less day. I slept late (snow will do that to you), got up and cleaned house. By the time I had my shower in the afternoon, I didn’t feel like wearing any scent.

Sunday, Dec. 20: Ormonde Jayne Ta’if and Caron Parfum Sacré, for comparison testing. Also for pleasure, as I love both. Weather still cold, with snow on the ground, but we had a beautiful fire in the fireplace. No church due to snow; we stayed home and I wrapped presents.

Monday, Dec. 21: Shalimar Lite (Blue Juice), with a dab of vintage Shalimar pdt. I find that this combo approximates the effect of the original Shalimar Eau Legere, except that it lacks the lovely, lovely jasmine of said original SEL. (And I’m not even a jasmine fan!) I’m actually not in the mood for this often – Shalimar can get a little TarNilla Godzilla on me – but it’s terrific when there’s woodsmoke in the air, as there was that cold morning.

Tuesday, Dec. 22: Mauboussin. Still quite cold, though warmer than any day since last Thursday. I think Mauboussin is upscale fruitcake, with really good dense cream cheese icing, in a bottle. It smells great. I only have a mini, and I keep dithering on whether I need some. I probably don’t, with all the similar things I own.

I didn’t test anything new this week, which I blame on my general pre-Christmas busy-ness.  I’ll be getting back to testing samples in January.  The scent I did wear this week were good choices for the weather, no kudos to me – cold weather and orientals/florientals just go together. Duh. But I’m really, really looking forward to Friday, when I can OPEN MY ALAHINE!!!

Image is Perfume Bottles by WoOd5tOck at flickr.  Somebody sure likes their Intuition…


Dear Scent Diary, December 13-14

I’m planning on making this a recurring feature, in which I document the fragrances I wore and/or tested during the week, including the circumstances and whether they were right for the occasion or not.  To be blunt, my Excel file is getting really bloated, and I’m not keeping track of samples very well at the moment. 
Then, too, I figure this ought to be an easy way to oversee which bottles are getting used, and which aren’t. 
I’ll start back a week ago, because I had an epiphany, and didn’t blog about it because I didn’t think it was worth a whole post.  Turns out I changed my mind.  Last Sunday and Monday, the 13th and 14th, my community chorus held its winter concerts.  They went well, no major screwups.  (Hey, you can’t count on that.  Last concert, two separate soloists went totally off the rails: one skipped a portion of her solo, which you might not have noticed unless you were familiar with it – the accompanist picked up where she was, and there was no big hole; the other got completely lost and there were several measures of either silence or wrong notes.  Weird, the stuff that happens to amateur vocalists.  Both of those ladies had been just fine in rehearsal.)  I was fortunate this year to be picked for a solo, and for those (few) of you who wanted to know how it went – it was fine, and Monday I’d say was even pretty, although I don’t think I ever did it justice.  I was afraid of screwing it up and never really relaxed, which is sort of a metaphor for life, right?  You can overthink things.  Anyway, I think Mozart’s music is like whipped cream: perfect to start with, sheer heaven if you do it right, but even bad whipped cream is better than no whipped cream.
Here is the lovely voice of Lucia Popp with the Ambrosian Singers Philharmonic Orchestra, performing Laudate Dominum.  Please click on it to enjoy it – c’mon, it’s Mozart.  It’s beautiful.  You should never turn down beauty, unless you’re in a hurry because somebody is bleeding.  (Oh, and I could only dream of sounding like Lucia Popp.  Sigh.)
My epiphany: I’ve been singing with choral groups since I was five.  (My mother made me.  That’s definitely a story for another post.)  One of the cardinal rules for choral singing, along with Always Have a Pencil and Never Chew Gum During Rehearsal, is Please Don’t Wear Perfume to the Concert.  Last week, I Broke The Rule.  (Gasp!) There are people who break rules all the time – a few months ago, The CEO decided to turn left at a red light, because, as he said, “We’re late for church, and nobody’s coming toward us for half a mile, you can see that far,” – but I’m not one of them.  Breaking rules for no good reason gives me hives.  (I gave The CEO down the road for that one, especially since the kids were in the car – let’s all chastise him together now: bad, bad CEO.  Bad Example.)
But I was really stressed.  I’ve had this cold for seven weeks now, off and on, and while it’s not really hindering my daily life – it’s winter, nobody’s freaking out over my tissue use – I haven’t been what I’d call In Good Voice since about September.  And I was dreading the possibility of screwing up Mozart, which is a crime against humanity, or at least a crime against the ears of humanity.  So, I confess, I broke the rule, and snuck a spritz of Mariella Burani.  Just one, in the cleavage, so I could lower my chin and catch a tiny breeze of it if I needed it.  MB is a comfort scent for me – it’s vaguely reminiscent of Chanel No. 5, which is what my mother wore when I was a child, although it’s far quieter and less immediately recognizable to the noses of many.  The low sillage and the metaphysical hand of Mom on my shoulder made it just right.
You know what?  Nobody noticed.  And later, it occurred to me that the whole perfume ban probably came about primarily because of those killah sillage monsters of the 80’s.  Which I wouldn’t wear to a concert, so I think I’m safe.  And I had a great time singing and smelling Mariella.
Image is Some Perfume Bottles by parfumgott at flickr.  I don’t know whose collection it is, but I’m envious.  Check out the vintage Dior in houndstooth, and those Goutals in the gorgeous butterfly boules.  There’s also J’Adore and Ungaro Diva, both in pretty bottles, and I recognize at the right front a vintage bottle of Nina Ricci, probably L’Air du Temps.