Caught up! Well, with orders anyway… And some sniffing notes

Finally caught up after a very busy couple of weeks; all orders have shipped, mostly via Priority Mail, and all should arrive before the 25th. That sure feels good! Now I need to do a few last Christmas things for my family, and I have to eventually get back to paperwork that has gone undone for too long. But I can take a moment to feel good that the shipping is under control again.

While packing orders I test sniffed a few samples of new releases. I’ll have to wear some of these again when I can concentrate more on them, but I made some first impressions. The one that interested me the most was L’Artisan’s new Havana Vanilla by Bertrand Duchaufour, which was to me a delicious blend of the most rummy vanilla I’ve ever smelled with lots of musk, some light woods, a hint of banana, light tobacco, and just a bit of dirtiness from some narcissus. I don’t usually like vanilla scents and this sometimes veered close to being too sweet, but it stayed just within sweetness bounds for me and mesmerized me with its long-lasting rum note. It is hard to do a rum note that goes on forever like that. I liked the musks in the base too, and I’m betting the musk base may be partly why people’s perceptions of this scent vary so widely. Some people report that it is light and fleeting for them, but I found it long-lasting and rich.

I also sniffed the Van Cleef & Arpels scents and liked Gardenia Petals best. It has the prettiest musk base you can ask for teamed with light florals. Very nicely done and it worked well for my nose and skin. The beautiful musk blend compliments the delicate white floral notes just perfectly.

I also tried some others that didn’t fare as well. Oriental Lounge from The Different Company started out with promise but turned too sweet for me. Sel de Vetiver still remains my favorite TDC with Bois d’Iris close behind, both wonderful to me.

Cuir Cordoba by Keiko Mecheri was pleasantly fruity floral to me, but the fruity notes overwhelmed the leather to my nose. This is where relative sensitivities come into play, and fruit notes can sometimes take over for me. I do fine with plum and berry notes from most damascones, but I am fairly sensitive to berry notes from raspberry ketone and there must be something like that in Cuir Cordoba’s fruity accord that was coming out too strongly to me. I’ll need to sniff this one again. Many people have loved it — those who need leather notes to be on the soft side and can handle the fruity notes may find it to be perfect.

Although I loved Francis Kurkdjian’s Lumiere Noire pour femme (as mentioned previously here on the blog), the APOM femme and Cologne Pour le Soir didn’t do as much on my skin. That’s why we all need to test things for ourselves though, to judge how things work for our own skin and noses.

Time for me to get back to blending work on ET and AN. I’ve had a break from them and can be more objective now.

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  1. Laurie –
    I’m wondering if you’ve tried Guerlain’s Spiritueuse Double Vanille and how the Havanna Vanilla compares? Since I have a bottle of SDV, I haven’t been inspired to try the HV and now that I read lots of musk, well…. that did it! LOL! So many scents and so little time anyway.

    Congrats on being caught up!

  2. Hi Donna,

    I’ve not tried Guerlain’s SDV but really should. I’ve heard people say it is in the same family as Havana. I seem to pick up on musk at lower levels than many people so Havana may seem muskier to me than to many, but you are sensitive to musk too. While I like musk, it sounds like you don’t usually enjoy very much of it (especially in something that’s already on the sweet side) so this one might be iffy for you. It has a yummy rum note though so if you like rummy vanilla it’d still be worth a sniff sometime. I really liked the musks in it. People who do well with musk/vanilla blends and love rum notes might want to check it out (though the hint of banana may put some people off).

    Thanks on being caught up! Feels so good. I was able to do some blending on ET yesterday and will test it today. Orders are just trickling in now — I think most people are busy with the holidays and just about done with their big online shopping agendas.

  3. Do you still have my email address? Email me your address and I’ll send you a sample! You cannot let that one go unsniffed! I think it is brilliant and showcases JPG’s genius in doing something which to my nose is very different from his classic offerings.

  4. You’re sweet! I’d only want to do that if I can send you something in swap. You are probably right about it being a good one to experience; I’ve heard many good things about it. I bet there are samples of SDV at TPC and TPP too. I have your email, will do…

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