lördag 29 juni 2013

Fragrance(s) of the week (26-27) 2013 - Geeky

Photo: Parfumista (c)
One of my favorite perfumerelated occupations is side-by-side testings on different themes,.For example perfumes that I think are quite similar, when testing them one on each arm, in most cases the differences are bigger than what I have percived from smelling the fragrances separately. Another interesting exercise is to test different strenghts (perfume, Edp, Edt) which  also are more or less different formulas of the same fragrances. The most intriguing test is to compare formulations from different decades to find out how a fragrance has evolved from reformulations over the years. Such thrilling exercise are waiting this summer. Last week, on the monthly perfumelunch exhanging samples with  Fragrantfanatic, I recieved some interesting vintagesamples from FF:s bargain on Tradera (swedish E-bay). Now I looking forward to compare the Madame Rochas EDC (70s) with the Madame Rochas Pdt (80s?) and current Madame Rochas Edt I have. Also the Grés Cabochard Edt is very interesting, the sample I received from the 70s to the Edt version I have from the late 90s. I know that the current forumla is pale compared to the late 90s formula, if the difference is that big also between the 90s and 70s formula, than the 70s must be impressive!

fredag 28 juni 2013

Annick Goutal - Les Colognes Vetiver

Picture: Seaside Oregon, US
Photo by Apollomelos, Wikimedia Commons
The Vétiver in the Annick Goutal Les Colognes line, is the scent that IMHO is at least similar to the original. Les Colognes Vétiver is creatred/reconstructed by Isabelle Doyen. I have read somewhere that this reconstructions in Les Cologne line could be an attempt to rescue these classics in some shape from allt the regulations but I don't know.

Les Colognes Vétiver starts with an airy, seabreeze, light vetiver accompanied with something smelling of clean, soft leather. It has nothing of the intriguing scent of soapy silver polish which is carachteristic for the original Vétiver. As the cologneversion dries down, a light touch of a citric-flowery note appears, mingeling with the light, clean leather-vetiver note. The pleasant and discrete white musk of the other Les Colognes is also present in the vétiverversion grace it with some airy radiance. Les Colognes Vétiver is subtle but still present in a comfortable and seaside impression way. A very wearable stylish, fresh fragrance, perfect both for work and casual. Sillage is close but  when it comes to longevity, talking about seaside, Les Colognes Vétiver has more to be desired, it can not cope a three hour boattrip in the inner archipelago. In office sorroundings I suspect it will last for almost a day.

To really appreciate Les Colognes Vétiver I think one have to see it as a separate creation to the original Vétiver. To me the cologne version has more in common with the airy-transparent Etro Vetiver than with the original AG Vetiver Edt.

Rating: 4

Notes: Lemon, vetiver, rosemary, sage, iris

onsdag 26 juni 2013

Annick Goutal - Les Colognes Néroli

Picture: Glass vial containing Neroli Essential Oil
Photo: Itineranttrader, Wikimedia Commons
Le Cologne Néroli is, just as the original Néroli Edt, created by the housenose of Annick Goutal, Isabelle Doyen in collaboration with Camille Goutal.

Le Cologne Néroli starts with fresh, pale green orangeblossom/neroli notes. The opening is sparkling and moist compared to the Edt-version, which I suspect is discontinued. The Edt starts with the orangeblossom/neroli but  supported by notes that gives it a herbal touch. After a while  notes smelling almost as fresh mushrooms appears in the Cologne, while the same passage in the Edt smells like a well kept stable with happy horses. The Cologne Néroli has the same typical, fresh luxurary linen colognenote as Le Cologne Eau d'Hadrien and lots of other better colognes. Just as the Hadrien Cologne, there is a fine, white musk base that intermediates a moisty impression. Overall the cologneversion is more flowery and sparkling, in the Edt version the orangy notes are combined with a herbal touch. Even if the Cologne Néroli is more similar to other nérolicolognes i prefer it slightly to the Edt.

Le Cologne Néroli has better longevity on me than the original Edt. I suspect that the white musk, just as in Le Cologne Eau d'Hadrien, is the facilitator of this. The Cologneversion lasts for more than a day with fragments left after 24h and the Edt lasts for almost a day.

Those who likes Hermès Eau de Cologne d'Orange Verte, Historiae Orangerie du Roy and the likes will probably appreciate Le Cologne Néroli.

Rating: 4+

Notes: Neroli, orangeblossom, petitgrain, heliotrophe, white musk

måndag 24 juni 2013

Annick Goutal - Les Colognes Eau d'Hadrien

Picture: Kornfeld mit Zypressen, 1888/1889
Painting by Vincent van Gogh (1853-1890) 
Annick Goutal Les Colognes is a light interpretation of some Annick Goutal fragrances form where it seems as some is disappered from the line as for example the intriguing VétiverLes Colognes Eau d'Hadrien could be an attempt to save this classic by interpreting it in another form and texture as the citric notes has gone true many restrictions during the lastest years which has step by step transformed the original formula to something too different. The older formula in my bottle from ca Y2K, but of course not oldest formula as Eau d'Hadrien is from the early eighties, is more lemony and dense in its structure than the paler and more woody current cologneversion.

Le Cologne Eau d'Hadrien starts with citrusnotes but to my nose there are more of the notes from the orangetree than lemonnotes in this version. Also the light fresh cypress note is much more evident than in the older version. If the old version has a color it's bright, yellow as a fresh lemon where the cologneversion is pale orange-pale-green it it had a color. To me Le Cologne Eau d'Hadrien is close to a thinner versin of Dior Escale à Portofino minus the almondnote in the latter and plus the fresh herbnotes of the former. Somewhere in the middle of Le Cologne Eau d'Hadrien a pleasant, slight bitter note of lemon cores also appears. The woody musky base are wellbalanced and the musk is pleasant, watery in texture and is probably the ingredient that provides this cologne a decent longevity. I feel traces of it in the evening after applying liberally in the morning. Perfect scent both for work (very officefriendly) and casual. Summery in style but, as with the old Eau d'Hadrien,  I would recommend wearing it on sunny winter to obtain a better longevity and to get time to catch this fine fragrance.

Rating: 3+

Notes: Lemon, tangerine, grapefruit, bergamot, petitgrain, cypress, basil, rosemary, musk

lördag 22 juni 2013

Fragrance(s) of the week (25) 2013 - Midsummer

Picture:Night on the Eve of Ivan Kupala
Painting by Henryk Siemiradzki (1892)
Wikimedia Commons
This week I been strolling in a the rosegarden testing Robert Piguets wonderful pinke rose, the new Rose Perfection  varied with Ramon Monegals intriguing and long lasting variation of the light rose, L'Eau de Rose. Serge Lutens metallic slight bloody but later in the drydown jammy rose La Fille de Berlin added some drama for a day.

On Midsummer Eve I forced myself to take a break in the roseparade, wearing something more non-descript floral/grassy/hayish to match this special day, my choice was the very versatile Jour d'Hermès. Smells very good but IMO with some longevity issus, it just last for 6-8h under out-of-doors conditions.

torsdag 20 juni 2013

Historiae - Violette Imperiale

Picture: Empress Eugénie (1826-1920)
Portrait 1853 by Franz Xaver Winterhalter (1805-1873)
Violette Imperiale is the only of the five fragrances released so far from Historiae that is not created by the hyperactive Bertrand Duchaufour. Violette Imperiale is created by a perfumer unknown to me, Constant Michaux. Violette Imperiale is said to be inspired by Empress Eugénie, the spanish wife of Emperor Napoleon III of France. The story says her favoriteflower was violet but as the at least two other fragrances is created for her; Creed Jasmin Impératrice Eugénie /inspired of her; Histoires de Parfums 1826 Eugénie de Montijo, focuses on other flowers/herb plants as jasmin respective patchouli she probably, as a well known perfumista of her time, liked many of the scents in the perfumers palette.

Violette Imperiale starts with an airy, transparent blackcurrant note, first the berries and then followed by the tartness of the buds. After a while, the fragrances deepens as also rich, fresh fruity notes appears followed by sweet flowery notes where the violet is evident but not dominating the others. The violet is of the same sweet type as Violtabletter, a swedish jelly candy pastille which tastes as a sweetened violet flower. The berry, fruity floral theme is intensified by the white musky base but the musk is wellbalanced and counterbalanced by the light woody notes. Violette Imperiale newer goes powdery as for example Blanc Violette by Histoires de Parfums nor crisp and green as for example Annick Goutal La Violette, it stays fruity-violet-flowery during the whole dry down
Picture: Violtabletter swedish violet jelly candy
Photo: PR Fazer (c)
Violette Imperiale is a typical easy to wear fragrance, suitable especially for spring and summer, both for work and casual. I think it's contemporary in style and doesn't see some obvious connection to the era of Napoleon III. The sillage is medium and the longevity for about a day.

Rating: 3

Notes: Orange, blackcurrant, peach, violet, iris, raspberry, ylang ylang, vanilla, musk, amber, vetiver, sandalwood

Thanks to Fragrance & Art for the sample to test

måndag 17 juni 2013

Historiae - Rose de France

Picture: Francis I (1494-1547)
Painting  1530 by Jean Clouet (1475-1540)
Wikimedia Commons
Rose de France is the fourth fragrance created by Bertrand Duchaufour in the Historiae-line.It's said to be inspired of the Francis I era in the beginning of the 16th century

Rose de France starts fruity with almost raspberrylike topnotes  blended with roses. The first impression, put in a plesant way, is the smell of a coughmedicin for chlidren which I've been medicated with as a child.After this bold opening the roses steps forward in a dry, but never overwhelmimg or cloying, potpurri-like accord.
The dry roses smells very authentic but after a while the fragrance gets moistier, sweeter and the roses alive and accompanied with other fresh blooming flowers as the dewy peony. The now fresh, medium purple pink rose  is the protagonist during the rest of the dry down. The musky base with some balsamic and patchouli touches reminds me of the creamy, very pleasant, but artifical smelling white musky base of the Oscar de la Renta Essential Luxuries line.

To me Rose de France is a pleasant rosy fragrance perfect for office- and casualwear for spring and summer. I can't see the connection with the era of Francis I as I image the roses of this century as dangerous, dark, dirty and heavy. Sillage is medium and longevity for more than a day.

Those who like pink musky rosefragrances as for example Bulgari Rose Essentielle and Burberry Body Tender could also appreciate Rose de France.

Rating: 3

Notes: May rose, damascena rose, pear, bergamot, tagetes, rose absolute, magnolia, mock orange, clove, davana, peony, géranium, listea cubeba,  benzoin, vanilla, musc, amber

Thanks to Fragrance & Art for the sample to test

lördag 15 juni 2013

Fragrance(s) of the week (24) 2013

Picture: New Robert Piguets are tempting me
Photo: PR Robert Piguet (c) all rights reserved
In the middle of my "reviewing light and summery fragrances period" I drooling over these interesting (to say at least) new Robert Piguets. I'm so curious, and soon I'll also be able to sample two of them: A perfect bright rose, Rose Perfection (even if the line already has the IMO perfect bright rose blended with powdery orris, Calypso) and a floral chypre (I love chypres) Alameda. Hopefully I also get the opportunity to test the leather Knightsbridge later on but now I'm so thrilled to dive in these two beauties, which I already know they are in advance. After all they are Piguets and this genuine house has proven to be the most versatile for me beside Guerlain and Chanel which is a great achievement as the two latter are giants with houndreds of perfumes in their lines compared to this little quality house.

torsdag 13 juni 2013

Historiae - Hameau de la Reine

Picture:  Petit Trianon, parc de Versailles
Photo by  Urban, (cc) some rights reserved
 Wikimedia Commons
Hameau de la Reine is green floral created by Bertrand Duchaufour for the french house Historiae. The fragrance is inspired of Marie Antionette  and her "revolt" against the Versailles court ie  "Marie-Antoinette wants to have her own little village to enjoy the pleasures of the countryside with her children. Her aspiration for a rural paradise is somewhat a result of the Enlightenment. The Queen had her Hameau built in Versailles in 1783, going against the traditions of the old Royal Court".

Hameau de la Reine starts sparkling, light green with citrusy accents. The greeney is like fresh buds with a touch of tart tomatoleaves. The greenery is very natural smelling and soon Hameau de la Reine elicts the image and scent of a sunny midsummer meadow with its wild untamed grass, midsummerflowers and moisty earth  underneath. As Hameau de la Reine dries down, flowery notes gets more predominant and now we are transported from the meadow to the garden of a sweet cottage, just as in Marie Antionettes little artificial, rual, village. Wild roses, mock orange and robust peonies are present over the green backgrund that has become slightly darker and accentuated by woody notes when the fragrance reaches the balanced musky, basenotes.

Picture: Marie Antionette (1755-1793)
Painting of Louise Elisabeth Vigée  Le Brun (1755-1842)
Light green, airy and delightful, Hameau de la Reine is a perfect fragrance for the coming midsummercelebrations. It's a casual fragrance but also suits for work as it can't offen anyone. The sillage is close and the longevity not for a whole day which is surprising as the others tested from the line so far, Orangerie du Roy and Bouquet du Trianon (see previous reviews) both have very good longevity. But Hameau de la Reine is that sort of light fragrance that could be reapplied during the day without causing olfactory disasters, i.e the rule that says: Never apply perfume on unclean skin. But there are some exceptions: Some light and fresh fragrances, preferably citrus, could be used even a day after the previous shower.

Those who like Chanel Cristalle Eau Verte and the new version of Balmain Vent Vert will probably also appreciate the delicate Hameau de la Reine.

Rating: 3+

Notes: Bergamot, blackcurrant bud, tomato leaf, fig leaf, rose, galbanum, peony, geranium, mock orange, ivy, vetiver, patchouli, white wood, musk, honey

Thanks to Fragrance & Art for the sample to test

måndag 10 juni 2013

Historiae - Bouquet du Trianon

Picture: Queen Marie Antoinette of France walking in the park of Trianon
with two of her children.Painting 1785 by Adolf Fredrik Werthmüller  (!751-1811)
Bouquet du Trianon is a floral woody fragrance created for Parfums Historiae by the famous nose Bertrand Duchaufour. Historiae are using a high precentage of natural fair traded esential oils in their fine fragrances.

When it comes to the inspiration to Bouquet du Trianon the story tells: "On August 15, 1774, King Louis XVI makes a wonderful gift to his wife Marie-Antoinette: "You love flowers, I have a bunch to offer you: the Petit Trianon." At Trianon Marie-Antoinette created a haven of intimacy that allowed her to escape the etiquette. She indulged her taste for countrystyle patterns and pastel colors."

Bouquet du Trianon starts with an airy and fizzy burst of greenry, some crisp flowers and most of all blackcurrant buds. The black currant is the mainplayer in the topnotes and is still clearly recognizable during the whole dry down. There is also a light, transparant, almost incenselike note that accompanying the blackcurrentnote, maybe the mint and beewax combined with the refined and smooth sandal- and cedarwood notes creates this effect. The flowers of the blend takes the centerstage somewhere in the middlenotes and are still present in the woody base. The dominating flower is a light, transparent and fizzy tubereuse, note meety and indolic, but wellbehaved and minimalistic. There is also something reminding of a pleasant, hard caramellnote. In the top- and in the beginning of the middlenotes Bouquet du Trianon seems to be a transparent version of another recent Bertrand Duchaufour creation dominated by blackcurrant: Enchanted Forest from The Vagabond Prince. It is easy to suspect that the two fragrances where created simultaneously a transparent one and a heavier one. Of the two I personally prefer Bouquet du Trianon as it blends much better with my skinchemistry. The critical Mr Parfumista complimented Bouquet du Trianon, thought there is some1980s vibe of the perfume and even found some similarities in its apperance and style, even if Bouquet du Trianon is lighter, with the great Montana Parfum d'Peau.Personally I also find some similarities with Grossmith Floral Veil and with the spirit of Golden Chypre from the same house.

Picture: Bouquet de Trianon Edt
Photo: PR Historiae (c)
Bouquet du Trianon is a perfect fragrance for officewearing, elegant and not disturbing. Despite it's transaprant character, the sillage is medium and the longevity is for almost 24h. To me Bouquet de Trianon is a very comfortable springscent, a real wristsniffer and I'm very enthusiastic about it.

Rating: 5

Notes: Lemon, bergamot, mandarin, galbanum, mint, freesia, blackcurrant bush leaf,  tuberose absolute, ylang ylang, beeswax absolute, rose, honeysuckle, vetiver, patchouli, amber, musk, sandalwood, cedarwood

Thanks to Fragrance & Art for the sample to test

lördag 8 juni 2013

Fragrances for the Royal Wedding

Of course I can't resist choosing fragrances for the happy couple. Taken into account that the groom is american and both lives in the Big Apple the choices of course are from american houses:

For Chris: The classic Aramis JHL in vintage version. Maybe not a fragrance for a summerday but I think it's a fragrance for Chris. He seems to be a epicurean who wouldn't say no to a good cigar and a fine cognac or two. Exactly the impressions I get from vintage JHL.

For the coming Mrs. O'Neill, the Royal Princess Madeleine: Of course one of my favourite flowers, Parfums Delrae Amoureuse. This happy but in the same time deep and velvety floral with the distinct note of cardamom and something just a bit naughty lurking underneeth is the perfect choiche for the not at all blushing bride. The Princess had a broken engagemant some years ago, is also a well known shopper and former partygirl, which is not popular in this nation of  Jante.

And at least, I can't help choosing also the fragrance for the ambitious mother in law Eva Maria O'Neill:  Le Parfum Couture Denis Durand for M.Micallef this stunning, dark animalic rose  is a dangerous fragrance which will suit this extravagant lady perfectly.

Fragrances of the week (23) 2013 - Royal wedding

Picture: H.R.H Princess Madeleine
with her coming husband Mr Christopher O'Neil
Photo: Brigitte Grenfeldt (c) Kungahuset.se, all right reserved  
This entry is a summery for international readers about todays event The perfumereflections will follow in the next entry.

Today there is a Royal wedding here in Stockholm as H.M King Carl XIV Gustaf youngest daugther H.R.H Princess Madeleine marries an american (also with british citizenship) sort of hedgefundtrader/analyst with a very ambitious austrian mother Eva Maria O'Neill (a cool lady with, it seems as, a well thought out strategy for herself and her three children, from three of her four marriages with wealthy men); Chris O'Neill.

The happy couple lives in New York where the Princess works for H.M Queen Silivas charity Foundation Childhood in the US branch.and they will continue their life in NY also after the wedding. Mr O'Neill will remain as a "Mr", stay with his american-british citizenship and go on with his business as usual. Overall this couple isn't so (at least what is communicated by the press, so who really knows), how to put it in a polite way, "in tune with the times" as, and therefore not so popular, as the coming Queen H.R.H Crownprincess Victoria and her husband H.R.H Prince Daniel who are (almost too) perfect, hardworking, nice and well shaped/trained (personally, they are my favourites, good examples to the nation). He was a PT and owner of a successful gym company before his royal carrier but have to leave his business to serve the country as the husband of the coming Queen.

At 16.00 today everyone in Sweden who like pomp and circumstances, beautiful dresses and sparkling jewels, will gather in front of the televisions and I'll of course be one of them :-)

torsdag 6 juni 2013

Historiae - Orangerie du Roy

Picture: Louis XIV of France (1638-1715)
oil on canvas 1701 by Hyacinthe Rigaud (1659-1743)
Orangerie du Roy is an excellent orangeblossom dominated fragrances composed by Bertrand Duchaufour for the house of Historiae. This house creates fragrances inspired of the spirit of different eras of the french history.

Orangerie du Roy is inspired of the "Sun King" Louis XIV which adored the freshness of the orangeblossom. The King started a new era parfumevise directed to fresh, flowery perfumes, preferably orangeblossoms, after being overdosed with musk for many years.

Orange du Roy starts with a natural smelling, clean, orangeblossom, without musky or laudery details. The flower is contrasted by light, green herbal notes, somehow smooth and on the verge of soapy but the fragrance doesn't enter the soapy territory, just touches it. The orangeblossom is classic-fresh and recalls the scent of freshly pressed linen sheets in cool and shady room during a warm summerday in a luxury Mediterrian hotel. Even if Orange du Roy is linear or maybe circular in its structure it is not dull at all, it evokes images not just from Mediterrian hotels, I can also see the old Sun King in his warm whig, strolling in the gardens of Versailles a warm summerday. Orangerie du Roy is well balanced and made of fine ingredients of an impression number for a eaux styled fragrance. It's also reasonable priced ca EUR 25 for 15 ml/ ca EUR 49 for 50 ml.
Picture: Orangerie du Roy Edt
Photo: PR Historiae (c)
Orangerie du Roy is a real wristsniffer, perfect both for work and casual, especially during spring and summer. The longevity is very good for a an eaux styled edt, it lasts for more than a day.

I think those who sheer orangeblossoms as Prada Infusion Fleur d'Oranger and Hermès Cologne Orange Verte will also like Orangerie du Roy.

Rating: 4

Notes: Lemon, sweet orange, petit grain, basil, mint, bergamot, orangeblossom, ylang-ylang, honeysuckle, lavendel, thyme, mock orange, patchouli, vetiver, oakmoss, musk

Thanks to Fragrance & Art for the sample to test

måndag 3 juni 2013

Parfums deNicolaï - L'Eau à la Folie

Picture: L'Eau à la Foile
Photo: PR Parfums de NIcolaï
It's almost an old truth that you can always count on Patricia de Nicolaï. Well made fragrances to affordable prices, I can't understand all complaints of the bottles, I think they are charming  with their a bit homemade look, as they are just bottled and labled in the lab and then taken out for an immediate sell in the shop. L'Eau à la Foile, the creation of last year in Patricias L'Eau line, (precursors L'Eau Mixté 2010 (citrus/wood), L'Eau Chic 2011 (geranium)), is no exception. It's a wellmade, somehow robust, realible green, slight fruity, floral, slight boozy, spicy, woody light fragrance with a with a surprising longevity, for a day at least even if close to the skin most of the time.

L'Eau à la Folie starts with refreshing, sparkling notes of lime, citrus, a light white ruhmnote and some spritzy floralnotes. The opening is just like a refreshing Mojito a hot summerday. Mojito is also mentioned among the topnotes. As L'Eau à la Folie dries down the flowery impression strenghtens and there is a light spicy fizz that runs through the whole drydown of L'Eau à la Folie, and is also apparent in the light, blond woody base.

Picture: Mojito
Photo: from Gigilicom  
L'Eau à la Folie is such a pleasure to wear, a real wristsniffer that feel natural in comparison with all the fresh chemical laundry stuff out there. The name is well chosen, the fragrance is happy and smiling, ready for some minor madness. L'Eau à la Folie suits perfect for summer daytime wear, both for work and casual. I also think it will suit also in the middle of the cold and dark winter, when longing for summer. From the L'Eau line, I like L'Eau à la Folie best so far.

Rating: 4

Notes: Mojito, citrus, ginger, flowers, jasmine, green notes, fruits, wood

lördag 1 juni 2013

Fragrance(s) of the week (22) 2013

Photo: Mr Parfumista (c)
June will be the month focusing on reviews of the light, summerstyled fragrances that I have tested during the spring. Overall my favourites are dark, mysterious, orientals or heavier florals and of course also deep, mossy chypres and soapy/powdery aldehydes but this time of the year, I really appreciate and long for light and sparkling creations.