L’Artisan Parfumeur Oeillet Sauvage ~ fragrance review


If you’re perfume-obsessed, it’s always a crushing blow when one of your favorite scents is discontinued. Once gone, a fragrance almost never returns; today I’m happy to be able to discuss one of the rare exceptions to that rule. If you’ve been keeping track of this sort of thing (as I have!), you may have recently been cheered to learn that L’Artisan Parfumeur was reissuing several fragrances that had been discontinued, including Tea for Two, L’Eau de Caporal and Oeillet Sauvage. (Bois Farine has also become easier to find than it was at this time last year, thank goodness.)

Oeillet Sauvage was developed by perfumer Anne Flipo and originally launched in 2000. Its current press release describes it as a “spicy and vibrant fragrance – an ode to carnations in bloom in the wild” that captures the flower’s “exuberance” and “sensuality.” Oeillet Sauvage’s composition includes notes of pepper, pink peppercorn, carnation, rose, ylang-ylang, white lily, wallflower, vanilla, cedar and musk…

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Clinique Aromatics in White ~ fragrance review

Clinique Aromatics in White

My samples of Clinique Aromatics in White1 were ordered from an eBay seller in Italy. As the weeks passed and I received no samples, I began to joke about ordering from an Italian. I pictured a beautiful young woman who had gotten her samples free from the Clinique counter at la Rinascente in Rome. She forgot all about my order till one night at cocktails (with her gorgeous boyfriend) she reached in her huge purse and found the samples: “Dio! L’Americano! Profumo! Clinique!” I imagined she looked up my address on her iPhone, made an envelope on the spot from a stiff paper napkin and tape, then wrote my address on it using her Gucci eye liner. On their way home, she had her beau stop his Vespa at what she thought was a mail box (the box was red, anyway) and tossed in my perfume. Only when she got home did she think: “Merda! Ho dimenticato il francobollo!!!!!” (that’s “S**t! I forgot the postage stamp!”)

Italians, please forgive my one-word sentences and clichés! (If I could switch countries with you tonight, I would!) Plus: the joke was on me. Though the parcel took six weeks to arrive, it, and the perfume inside, were delivered in pristine condition…

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Hermes Le Jardin de Monsieur Li ~ fragrance review, with an aside on Rose Amazone

Hermès Le Jardin de Monsieur Li, brand drawing and bottle

“I remembered the smell of ponds, the smell of jasmine, the smell of wet stones, of plum trees, kumquats and giant bamboos. It was all there, and in the ponds there were even carp steadily working towards their hundredth birthday.” — Jean-Claude Ellena1

Le Jardin de Monsieur Li is the fifth fragrance in the Jardin series from Hermès, and reportedly the last.2 I do not know if it is also the last scent we’ll see from perfumer Jean-Claude Ellena, but either way, smelling it gave me an advance pang of nostalgia. I will miss Jean-Claude Ellena when he retires.3

Le Jardin de Monsieur Li is an aromatic citrus, reportedly inspired by a Chinese garden. The notes (something like kumquat, mint, jasmine and sap) sounded tantalizing, but as is often the case with Hermès and Jean-Claude Ellena, the juice is not quite what I expected…

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Oriza L. Legrand Violettes du Czar & Heliotrope Blanc ~ fragrance reviews

Oriza L. Legrand Violettes du Czar & Heliotrope Blanc

Some people might not understand why you’d want to wear a soliflore. After all, why smell like one flower — a flower you’re probably already familiar with — when you could smell like an original blend of notes? Following that logic, there would be no reason to look at paintings of the ocean once you’ve seen the real thing, even though seascapes vary in styles — think of those by Turner, Homer and Hokusai. If I had to pin a style to the Oriza L. Legrand soliflores Violettes du Czar and Heliotrope Blanc, I’d call them Victorian.

Oriza L. Legrand is a relatively new niche brand with an old history. According to the perfume house’s website, the house was founded in France in 1720 and originally famed for its creams and powders based on rice. Over the years, the brand grew, winning awards and furnishing products for royalty. During World War II, Oriza L. Legrand closed. In 2012, the house was bought and launched again with the mission of reviving the old fragrances…

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5 perfumes: gourmand oddities


Way back in 2008, Erin wrote a post called 5 Perfumes for: Gourmand Deniers. Her selection emphasized gourmands for people who are wary of gourmands; in her words, gourmands “that camouflage their intentions”. Like Erin, I don’t think of myself as a huge fan of sweet, dessert-based gourmands, although as time goes on I find more and more exceptions to the rule. Today, however, I’m thinking about an entirely different kind of gourmand. Here are five fragrances that smell like food without calling to mind the conventional offerings on a dessert tray.

Lush The Voice of Reason: If Dinner by Bobo were still on the market (and if it is, do comment), it would surely take top honors in any list of gourmand oddities, but as a reasonably meaty substitute I offer The Voice of Reason, which I described in my review as “rather alarmingly meaty”…

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