An advertising image for Habit rouge from Ebay.com
Citrus may not be a word you associate with amber. If you don’t I won’t blame you. The word amber itself is complicated since in the perfume world it can mean one of three things 1) the sea soaked upchuck of whales who have eaten too many tiny shrimp 2) the fossilized tree amber from long dead forests or 3) a mixture of labdanum and vanilla.
It is the third of these definitions that most of us come into contact with since definitions nos 1& 2 are either outrageously expensive or hard to source or both at once. So for our purposes amber = labdanum + vanilla and the proportions vary. Generally it is a lot more labdanum and not too much vanilla or else your amber becomes stickily sweet. I think there are so many ambers in commerce, that each amber enthusiast ends up finding their own preferred brand. Continue reading
Old advertising for Shalimar with the familiar bottle…
Some of the great classics are stumbling blocks. There is something about the journey of perfumery that can make you think that you would never be the sort of person who would wear say No 5, or Mitsouko, or L’Origan, or in my case Shalimar. Here’s the point though – you may be exactly that sort of person after all.
Maybe it’s a kind of snobbism that makes us not want to admit that some well known formula brings us as much joy as the next person, or that some perfume is just about unbeatable in its class though that’s often the case. My own experience in coming around to Shalimar had to do with realizing that I was already wearing Shalimar, just not the blue stoppered kind. I mean I wear leather, a lot of leather, and citrus, and vanilla and what does that add up to? Yeah, it adds up to Shalimar Continue reading
When the sea and the sky get into the informal partnership we like to call a hurricane, it seems like all heck’s broken loose. Here in Jersey, we’re used to heck breakin’ loose. Heck, we often break it loose ourselves.
This last week’s meteorological event had our full attention. We even stopped watching Bravo.
Who knew how bad was it going to be? Well, along about noon on Monday our cat (the Jersey Girl par excellence) put her nose out the front door and considered a quick dash to avoid the litter box. If the Jersey Girl had been any other type of cat than the scrappy little tabby that she is, and a Jersey Native, she wouldn’t have risked it. As it was, she was out the door for a grand total of ten minutes and then dashed back inside. She had taken care of the essentials. Continue reading
Recently I read a description in a style magazine of stylishly appropriate and inappropriate houses. Among the latter group was Henry Higgins‘ in the movie of My Fair Lady. (You know, the blockbuster with Audrey Hepburn making you feel fat and Rex Harrison making you feel dumb. That one.) According to the magazine, his was absolutely the kind of house YOU DO NOT WANT.
I think I read that statement over at least twice. Not want? What was wrong with Henry’s house? It was well staffed and well appointed with yards and yards of William Morris wall paper on the walls and lots of carved mahogany everywhere (except Eliza’s bedroom) and lots of books. What man in his right mind wouldn’t want to live there?
Since there have been a dozen rose posts, this might a good time to take a breather, go back, and re-cap.
For all the complaining that perfume consumers do about the industry these days, one thing is inescapably true: there’s more variety. Once upon a distant time, Perfumer’s Workshop produced Tea Rose and Houbigant sold A Rose is a Rose.
That was about it in 1976. Now you have entire lines devoted to the flower in all its variations. Les Parfums de Rosine is one such house, and besides its twenty or so perfumes, there’s a slew of mainstream releases popular with the public such as Stella, or Valentino’s Rockin’ Rose.
Men once had buttonholes. Hard to believe, but they actually did, and what is more they really put things in these buttonholes – flowers for preference. Which flowers? Well, the gardenia was once called the “opera flower” because of being worn by gentlemen in their button holes to the opera. Other gentlemen chose other buttonholes: carnations, lily of the Valley, possibly a geranium (if they were Charles Dickens whose favorite flower it was) or a rose.