Friday scent of the day 1/8

DSM + Bianca Chandôn capsule collection

It’s Woodfest Friday! Our community project for today: wear something woody — but no oud, because we already did oud!

What fragrance did you pick? As always, do chime in with your scent of the day even if you’re not participating in the community project.

I considered Serge Lutens Chêne, but in the end I went with Comme des Garçons Sequoia, from the Red series. I smell like a tree. It appears to be out of stock everywhere, although others from the series are still available…

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Raw Spirit Winter Oak & Summer Rain ~ fragrance reviews

Raw Spirit Summer Rain and Winter Oak brand images

Last week I reviewed Desert Blush and Wild Fire, two fragrances from the new-ish brand Raw Spirit, both inspired by the landscape of the Australian outback. This week I tried Winter Oak and Summer Rain; once again, these fragrances were developed for Raw Spirit by perfumer Harry Fremont, but they refer to seasons in California and Florida, respectively.

Winter Oak is “a smooth, creamy, warming scent” inspired by “the oak-lined trails of the Chumash Lands of California on cool winter mornings.” Its composition includes clary sage, bergamot, pepper, lemon and geranium; saffron, maté, clove bud and olibanum; leather suede, oakwood, oakmoss, cedarwood, vetiver, patchouli and musk. It feels more nuanced than the woody Wild Fire…

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Serge Lutens Feminite du Bois vintage & new ~ fragrance review

Shiseido Féminité du Bois brand image, doubled

Just as Picasso had his Blue period, Serge Lutens had his “Bois” period, and Féminité du Bois was its foundation. Féminité du Bois established a new “flavor” in women’s perfume: sharp cedar counterbalanced with fruit and spice.

Like the gastronomic rediscovery that salty and sweet go well together (hello salted caramel and bacon chocolate), Féminité du Bois’s honey- and spice-dipped shaved cedar feels intuitively right. Serge certainly thought so. He followed it up with a raft of Bois fragrances…

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Aedes de Venustas Palissandre d’Or ~ fragrance review

Aedes de Venustas Palissandre d'Or

In May, West Village niche perfume boutique Aedes de Venustas will launch Palissandre d’Or,1 a new unisex fragrance developed by perfumer Alberto Morillas.

For rosewood lovers like myself, it’s good to know Palissandre d’Or does not aim for any realistic representation of rosewood, and there’s no rosewood in the formula; banish that idea from your mind or you may create disappointment for yourself before giving the perfume a chance. Palissandre d’Or aims to create an “imaginary wood…”

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Comme des Garcons + Pharrell Williams Girl ~ fragrance review

Comme des Garcons + Pharrell Williams Girl

Regular readers can probably already guess that I was barely aware of Pharrell Williams’ existence before he announced his debut fragrance with Comme des Garçons, Girl — he’s not the first celebrity that entered my radar via perfume, and he won’t be the last. In the interest of research, I did listen to a couple of songs while writing this review (Happy got stuck in my head for several hours, thank you) but other than that, I still know little enough. He’s won some Grammys, and everyone but me knows who he is.

With any luck, Happy will not be an ongoing earworm, but Girl will almost certainly take my vote for celebrity fragrance of the year. Of course, it hasn’t all that much competition in that category, and perspective does matter. If you adore Pharrell Williams but have never tried anything from the Comme des Garçons brand or the perfumer (Antoine Lie), Girl might be a surprise, and if the reviews on Sephora are to be believed, it may or may not be a good surprise. If you’re a big fan of celebrity perfumes and want something a little more sophisticated than the usual fare on offer — and you don’t mind paying more — Girl could be just what you’ve been waiting for. If you’re a perfumista and a longtime Comme des Garçons fan, Girl might strike you, as it did me, as hardly the best they can do, but an awful lot better than it might have been…

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