Reading Diary

 

When I occasionally read Young Adult fiction, I stick with fantasy or LBGTQ+. I read one of each last month. Unfortunately there is a lot of dross in YA so I try and be picky. One thing I’ll say about the genre though, is that the books are well paced and usually fun to read. They can be a good choice if you’re in a reading slump.

 

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Strange the Dreamer by Laini Taylor

I really loved the main character of the first instalment of this YA fantasy duology. Lazlo Strange is a librarian who spends all his spare time researching the lost city of Weep. He’s a dreamer with a big heart and we follow him as his life takes a huge twist. It’s a well written tale with fantastic characters, great world-building and a well-paced plot. Looking forward to the release of The Muse of Nightmares in October. 4/5

 

The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis

I felt like I was cheating a bit by reading a children’s book for my monthly classic. Even though I already knew the story, it was lovely to read it for myself and enjoy the little details, such as how Lucy loves the smell and feel of fur; rubbing her face in it when alone in the wardrobe. The concept is as good as it gets and beautifully realised. 5/5

 

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The Name of the Rose by Emberto Eco

I put this down after only about 60 pages. The writing was so dense I couldn’t get into the flow.  This book is extremely highly rated so clearly the issue is with me. If you think I should persevere please let me know in the comments.  I did like the idea of a Medieval murder mystery set in a monastery.

 

The Girl in the Tower (Winternight Trilogy 2) by Katherine Arden

I loved the immersive, magical experience of The Bear and the Nightingale and was happy to find that atmosphere continued in the second instalment of the trilogy. The focus of the story moves from the Russian wilderness to the city, but continues to revolve around Vasya, who has been branded a witch by her village. I had loved the rural setting of the first book but there is still a fair amount of that to start with and I was intrigued to read about Medieval Moscow. My only mild criticism of the first instalment was that it was rather slow paced. The Girl in the Tower moves along nicely and the last fifth or so is positively action packed. I’m not quite sure how I will wait until January 2019 for the final part of the story but I’ve already got it on pre-order. 5/5

 

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Simon vs. The Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli

This YA book has been recently turned into a film re-named Love, Simon. The story follows a 17 year-old boy in Georgia who hasn’t told anyone he’s gay and charts his anonymous online relationship with another closeted boy at his high school, known only as Blue. I wondered if I’d find Simon irritating at the start of the book but I grew to love him. He’s funny and his email exchanges with Blue are as endearing as they are entertaining. I stayed up much later than I should have one night because I was genuinely dying to find out the identity of Blue. I’m rubbish at working out any kind of mystery and true to form, I guessed wrong. I also enjoyed his interactions with his friends and family, who are all great. It doesn’t topple my favourite book in this sub-genre (Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe) but it comes close. 4/5

 

Norwegian Wood by Haruki Murakami

This was my first novel by Murakami and it proved a good place to start (thanks for the tip Ana-Maria). It’s set in Tokyo in 1969 and while I see it described as a love story, it’s MUCH deeper than that.  While the subject matter is tragic, the narrator – 19 year-old Toru Watanabe – is wonderful and the writing is beautiful. It had a spare, melancholy feel and kept reminding me of Catcher in the Rye. I felt validated when one of the characters asks Toru if he’s trying to talk like Holden Caulfield. Ah, Toru. He is such a sensitive, kind soul who wears his heart on his sleeve. This makes him painfully vulnerable but incredibly empathetic. I’m concerned about how I will get on with the magical realism of Murakami’s other novels but I definitely going to give them a try. 5/5

 

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Should I read the rest of The Chronicles of Narnia? Can you recommend which Murakami novel I should try next?

 

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ANIMA VINCI: “Fragrances Designed to Awaken the Spirit Within”

 

By Val the Cookie Queen from APJ

 

As some of you may have read in my last post, I recently spent a few hours with Nathalie Vinciguerra Founder and CEO of Anima Vinci Perfumes, formerly the Creative Fragrance Director of Penhaligon’s and L’Artisan. One could say she knows her stuff. Inside out.

 

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It was The Candy Perfume Boy that first brought Anima Vinci to my attention, and to be with both him and Nathalie in London, to sniff through the line was a privilege and a great pleasure. Both of their enthusiasm and love for the brand was infectious.

 

 

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There are five fragrances in the initial Anima Vinci collection.

 

Wood of Life by Michel Roudnitska

Bergamot, mandarin, grapefruit, mint, blue ginger, ylang ylang, rose, petitgrain, cinnamon, cloves, sandalwood, vetiver, patchouli, piri piri, palo santo, leather note, musk, vanilla.

Mellow, woody, smooth, soothing, quiet, but that is not to say unnoticeable. This perfume contains the material “piri piri“ seldom, if ever used before in a fragrance. The South Americans have drunk it as a tea for centuries, as a means of entering a dream like state, and for creating a calming and sedating effect. Perhaps this is what induces the feeling of tranquillity in Wood of Life. A distinctive and elegant fragrance.

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Lime Spirit by Christiano Provenzano

Bergamot, orange, citrus fusion, mandarin, black pepper, neroli, ginger, lavender, hedione, pink pepper, cardamom, pepperwood fusion, amber, cedarwood, moss, patchouli, vetiver, sandalwood, tonka, leather, benzoin, musk.

Opening with a stimulating and restoring burst of citrus, reminiscent of a cross between an Opal Fruit and Rose´s Lime Cordial, it is pure pleasure. Diving into the heart we find a multitude of colourful spices, enhancing the revitalizing effect of the citrus opening. Unlike the cologne you might be tricked into thinking it is, it all rests on a bed of leather, tonka, amber… Lime and leather? Absolutely.

 

Jasmine Yang by Thomas Fontaine

Mandarin, yuzu, pink pepper, solar flowers, water jasmine, frangipani, ylang ylang. sandalwood, ambergris, patchouli, vanilla, white musk.

This is my most worn of the five as I have a bottle in my collection. It is a white floral, but think more along the lines of a white floral for yoga and meditation. It dos not scream. The jasmine cossets your skin, sweetening your emotions, relaxing your mood. Jasmine blossom is offered to the Gods and Goddesses in the Hindu faith. Opening with a mandarin and pink pepper flash, the jasmine is there from the start, enhanced in the heart with ylang-ylang and frangipani. It rests on sandalwood, ambergris, patchouli …… and is utterly delectable.

 

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Oud Delight by Christian Provenzano

Bergamot, lemon. cinnamon, clove, ginger, saffron, coriander seed, ylang ylang, rose, olibanum, sandalwood, oud, patchouli, tonka, labdanum, vetiver, musk, amber.

As Nathalie introduced me to the Oud Delight, she commented that no collection is complete without an oud fragrance. Oud is no longer a phase, it will remain. Oud Delight opens with a strengthening bergamot and citrus accord, before smoothly going into a spicy heart, the oud apparent, but not overpowering. It is anchored into the base along with sandalwood, labdanum, amber …..Tranquil.

 

Rose Prana by Randa Hamami

Violets leaves, verbena, pink pepper, Centifolia rose, oak moss, woody accord, vetiver, patchouli, white musk.

It was The Candy Perfume Boy saying that Rose Prana was one of the most gorgeous roses ever that sparked my interest and the subsequent meeting of Nathalie. I love rose, but only have a couple in my collection. Rose Prana is absolutely ravishing. Rose: Sensual, love, enlightenment, calming, nourishing, rejuvenating, stimulating, restoring. Rose Prana is clear, sweet and with light notes of honey. Divine. I crave a bottle of this.

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All beautifully constructed, modernistic perfumes. An absolute joy.

Anima Vinci offer a perfect discovery set. 5 x 1.5 mls, and it includes a stack of scent strips and a very informative leaflet. You also receive a fifteen pound voucher to redeem if you choose to purchase a bottle. The discovery set is ten pounds plus postage.

 

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For more details and a lot more information on the Anima Vinci house, go check them out here.

With great thanks to Nathalie for the fantastic day that we had together, for the black cab ride, excellent tea and sunstroke.

Om Bussis
CQ

 

 

 

 

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Scherzo and Tender by Miller Harris

I went into the new Miller Harris store at Westfield London recently to try the pair of fragrances launched in January this year which were inspired by F. Scott Fitzgerald’s classic novel Tender is the Night.

Miller Harris gave a passage from the classic novel to two perfumers and asked them to interpret it in scent as they wished.

Here is the text: –

“…She walked on, between kaleidoscopic peonies massed in pink clouds, black and brown tulips and fragile mauve stemmed roses, transparent like sugar flowers in a confectioner’s window – until, as if the scherzo of colour could reach no further intensity, it broke off suddenly in mid-air.”

 

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It was clear from the packaging alone that the perfumes were very different and I discovered it mirrors their contrasting characters.  I kept muddling up the names because Scherzo is very tender, while Tender is very striking.

 

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Scherzo (by Mathieu Nardin)

Top: Tangerine and Davana
Heart: Olibanum, Narcissus, Pittosporum and Dark Rose
Base: Patchouli, Vanilla, Oudh and Sweet Note

I had to look up what ‘scherzo’ means. It’s a musical term for a composition that is light and playful in character. Now I understand why this feel-good fragrance is named as it is.

The opening of Scherzo is the best part for me. I love a tangerine note and the juicy, fruity opening is fantastic. I would have really liked to get those heart notes of narcissus olibanum (incense), pittosporum (Mock Orange) and dark rose, but after 10 minutes it has morphed into a fluffy vanilla. I don’t pick up on the oud.

Scherzo takes its inspiration from the ‘pink clouds’ and ‘sugar flowers in a confectioner’s window’. The SA said they only had two bottles left and I can well imagine it pleasing a wide range of people.

 

 

Tender (by Bertrand Duchaufour)

Top: Pink Pepper, Aldehydes, Green Hyacinth Note and Cinnamon
Heart: Black Tulip, Leather, Saffron, Geranium, Cyclamen, Incense and Turkish Rose
Base: Amber, Cedarwood, Myrrh Absolute, Patchouli, Frankincense, Vanilla Absolute, Storax, Sandalwood and Musk

If Scherzo is more mainstream in appeal, then Tender is more niche. Where Scherzo seems to focus on the word “fragile”, Tender seems to take its lead from the word “intensity”. It picks up on the kiedoscope of peonies, black tulips and mauve roses in the passage. Its character is as introverted and stealthily seductive as Scherzo is buoyant and innocent.

The first chapter of the perfume is the scent of a bed of green hyacinths; deep and heady in the shade.  This combines with the black tulip accord and rose in the heart to create a dark floral aroma which is uncommonly gorgeous.

This gradually slides into the familiar Duchaufour base of musky woods spiked with incense. It’s not as strident as it can be, but it’s still not something I’ve ever enjoyed in his work. All the same, I still favour Tender over Scherzo because I’m not much of a vanilla fan and up until the base, I find it quietly intoxicating.

 

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Are you attracted to perfumes inspired by literature? Which of this pair of  fragrances is more your style?

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Niral Sample Winner!

Sandra reviewed Niral by Neela Vermeire Creations last week and generously offered to post a sample to one lucky commenter.

I did a draw via random.org and the winner is:

 

Ingeborg

 

Congratulations Ingeborg!

Please email me at abotttledrose at gmail dot com with your postal address, which I will pass on to Sandra.

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24 Hour Perfume People – A Parisian Photo Essay

Portia of Australian Perfume Junkies invited me to join her and pals for an April trip to Paris a while ago. I thought I had better give it a miss considering I had booked a big holdaiy for July. Then last Wednesday I had one of those “life is short” moments and got on to fellow frag fanatic Lisa, to see if I could travel with her for the weekend. (Look out for her write-up on I Scent You A Day).

On Friday we boarded the Eurostar at St. Pancras.

 

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‘I Want My Time With You’ – Tracey Emin’s new pro-EU artwork.

 

On arrival at the Gare du Nord, we headed straight for the Metro.

 

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Photo credit: Lisa Jones

 

Lisa was staying at a hotel in the Latin Quarter while I was sleeping on the sofabed at Portia’s Airbnb, conveniently located in Les Halles. Before we met the others we found time to visit a huge French pharmacy. These places are full of amazing skincare that is often cheaper than back home. My usual Nuxe lip balm costs £9.50 but I got a couple here for 6.99 euro each.

 

 

When I arrived at the apartment, Scott was sorting through his precious scent strips from their trip to The Osmotheque the day before. He kindly let me sniff the recreated Iris Gris.

 

 

That evening we walked past the amazing Pompidou Centre on our way to dinner in the very cool Marais district.

 

 

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Pompidou Centre

 

 

The next morning we had croissants by the pond in the Tuileries gardens. Portia harassed the ducks and we messed about in front of The Louvre.

 

 

 

Then we made our way to the Jardin du Palais-Royal to meet up with the others (14 in total) for a 10am appointment at Serge Lutens.

 

 

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Jardin du Palais-Royal

 

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Tim and Lisa, with Margo in the background being fabulous (as per).

 

 

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A Portia Photobomb

 

 

 

 

 

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We went up the hallowed spiral staircase where few mortals are allowed to go.

 

 

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Each of the three tables had 4 different bell jars – and macarons!

 

 

After an introduction about Serge Lutens – the man himself – the staff passed around paper strips dipped into each of the twelve fragrances in turn. With strips in hand, they then read some corresponding background information about them.

The bell jars included Santal de Mysore (spiced), Miel de Bois (happily urine-free), Iris Silver Mist (bliss), Borneo 1834 (yum), Cuir Mauresque (greasy leather – in a good way), Chene (great), Un Bois Sepia (ugh), Fumerie Turque (very popular with the room), La Myrrhe (classy) and Rose de Nuit (own it).

 

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Afterwards, we were able to request others. I asked to try Une Voix Noire (which I thought I might buy) and De Profundis on skin along with Iris Silver Mist.

 

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Une Voix Noire turned out to be a transparent, almost honeyed, white floral. It was rather lovely but because it wasn’t the smoky gardenia I’d expected, it threw me.  I reckoned it was too much of a risk to purchase on the spot (I need a decant first).

 

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The Cool Kids Table

 

The one I decided to buy was Iris Silver Mist because I’m trash for iris and it isn’t as carrot-y or metallic as it used to be. When I thanked one of the SAs on my way downstairs and told her I was buying ISM, she told me it was currently available as a 30ml travel atomiser with a 30ml refill. At 120 euro for a total of 60ml (which I can spray!) compared to 190 euro for the 75ml bell jar, this was a result.

Just about everyone came away with something. In Portia’s case, three somethings – La Myrrhe, Chene and Chypre Rouge.

 

 

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Le Waft

 

 

Below left is the box and then below right is the black travel atomiser full of ISM, with the refill alongside it. I’ve worn it every day since and adore it. Anna-Maria bought the same and accidentally but brilliantly renamed it Irish Silver Mist 🙂

 

 

After lunch, we stopped off at Dior on our way to Jovoy. None of the swath of new perfumes in La Collection grabbed me but it’s great they do 40ml bottles now. Apparently Mitzah is released as a limited run each year, but only available in Paris.

 

 

 

Jovoy is a large store stocking a lot of luxury niche brands.  I tried Niral by Neela Vermeire Creations and a couple of the fragrances by Anatole Lebreton. I wanted to love Grimoire because of its wonderful name but sadly, did not. (You can read about my visit to the new London branch here).

 

 

A few of us wanted to visit the Sacré-Coeur and Montmartre so we left the others to it.

That tiny baby – bottom right – squealed and scared Portia out of her skin. Hahaha.

 

 

Before heading back to the apartment we made a visit to Divine Perfumes. Apparently L’Homme Sage went down well.

 

 

We spent the evening at a very nice restaurant where I tried my first oyster.

 

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The Last Supper

 

This fantastic group of perfume people made me feel included even though I was piggybacking on their trip at the last minute.

Lisa and I headed for the Eurostar home the next morning so it was essentially only one full day in Paris but wow, what a day.

Huge thanks to everyone involved for making it so special.

 

 

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Fun in London with The Candy Perfume Boy – Photo Essay

 

By Val the Cookie Queen from APJ

 

A Day with The Candy Perfume Boy, BlondesWunder and Kimball Shirley, cartoonist extraordinaire.

 

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Up bright and early on the Thursday before The Art and Olfaction Awards saw us heading up to Victoria Tube Station to meet Thomas, The Candy Perfume Boy (CPB) and Kimball Shirley, a very dear family friend of many years.  An American spending a little time in London.  Formerly of The Simpsons, and now of the animated sitcom Bob’s Burgers, we roped him into being our paparazzi.  He is now working on a fragrant comic picture of us all.  And we are freaking beyond excited.  
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Successfully meeting outside the Golden M in Victoria, we all headed to Les Senteurs to meet up with the utterly charming and vivacious Nathalie Vinciguerra, founder of the Anima Vinci perfume range.
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Beautiful uplifting fragrances, designed to pull at the heart and the spirit. BlondesWunder fell so in love with one she left with a decant.  It was the CPB that introduced me to the Anima Vinci range, albeit virtually, and it led to setting up the date with Nathalie whilst I was in London. (He attended the launch in the South of France).
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Suddenly finding ourselves in dire need of refreshment, Nathalie invited us to her office inside the mind-blowing Michelin House in Chelsea, originally opened in 1911.
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The building has an incredible rooftop terrace and we took our refreshment up there, happily spending another hour sniffing our way through the scents again.  
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There are five perfumes in the collection, each one is enchanting. I will introduce them in my next post here.  
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It was about time to take our leave and head off to The Holy Nando’s.  Thomas and I had promised this for ourselves several months earlier. I had never been, and he worships there.  This was a serious event and we treated it accordingly. 
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Undisputedly delicious and I now understand his regular attendance. As long as he works out properly during the week, and runs regularly, I am OK with that. 🙂 Meanwhile I need a serious stash of their Drizzle Oil.
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Having found out earlier in the day that Thomas and Nick had won a Jasmine Award for their Fume Chat Podcast, we forced ourselves to eat ice cream at Fortnum and Mason’s in celebration.  Why not?  Kimball had never been.  He had a banoffee cardiac arrest in a glass, topped with honeycomb chunks and a quarter litre side serving of liquid caramel to pour over it, as and when.  
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I do not have the words to do justice to the absolutely brilliant day that we had.  Bucket list date with CPB, hanging with a dear friend, and my daughter along to share my strange habits with both of them.  She had them laughing tears.  I’m gonna make her pay one day.  All my street cred is shot.
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Candy Burger Bussis
CQ
 

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Niral by Neela Vermeire Creations – And A Giveaway!

 

By Sandra from Australian Perfume Junkies

 

Silk Road…

Hey there ABR! How are you all doing?

As many of you know, I am a huge Neela Vermeire fan. She has been working with perfumer Bertrand Duchaufour for all of her creations and the latest perfume has been in the works for over two years.

Neela pours her heart and soul into each of her creations and her vision is clear and determined until she is satisfied with the final outcome.

Niral, an eau de parfum, is her newest release. I stalked the website for days waiting to be able to purchase Niral. I received my brand new bottle last week and have been wearing it every day since.

Niral means calm, serene and unique in Hindi and it suits the perfume beautifully as we will see further on. Niral is an olfactory ballad in honour of Sir Thomas Wardle (1831-1909) who received a knighthood for his work towards the silk business.

Before I continue I have to let you know that the packaging has changed from the box to the bottle. The box is a beautiful purple with silver embossed logo and lettering. The bottle shape remains the same, however Niral is a gorgeous gradient purple flacon. What I love most is that it has a thin silver cord with the name Niral on a small pendant.

 

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The notes listed on the NVC website are: Angelica, Champagne Accord, Iris, Tea, Rose, Magnolia, Cedar, Sandalwood and Leather.

When I first spray the perfume, I am greeted with a vibrant champagne accord. It has a slight liqueur undertone which quickly fades into the background. There is a lot of iris in the opening as well. It starts out muted and as the perfume warms up it becomes alive. Together with iris is the delicate floral bouquet of a black tea leaning towards Darjeeling.

For a few moments, Niral’s tea note has the muscatel grape note sometimes found in second flush Darjeeling teas. I find the subtle shift from the champagne accord to the iris and tea phase so fitting since Darjeeling is considered by many as the champagne of teas. There are times when I can imagine getting a whiff of magnolia. It is fleeting but I do not detect it every time I am wearing it.

As the perfumes shifts it moves into a more rounded phase where cedar and sandalwood are mixed in and bring the whole composition to the next level. The sandalwood is smooth and the cedar lends it a slightly woodier side. The elegant finale comes when the drydown is a chorus of iris, tea and soft, almost suede-like, leather with a smooth woody finish. It has an almost tactile quality about it bringing a sense of calm into my life.

 

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Niral is a complex perfume with sublime notes. One word describes it – exquisite.

I adore it and hope that you all will as well. I would like to send my sample to one lucky reader. Please leave a comment telling me what your favourite spring time flower is and why. On a side note, I would like to state that Niral truly does need to be sprayed to experience the full beauty with all the nuances.

Entries for the Giveaway close at midnight on Thursday 3rd May and the winner will be announced here on Saturday 5th May. Good luck!

 

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Raw Silk: Neela Vermeire Creations

 

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The Art and Olfaction Awards 2018 – Photo Essay

 

I had been looking forward to last weekend for MONTHS. So many of my friends from other countries, that I rarely get to see, would be converging on my home town for the fifth annual Art and Olfaction Awards on the evening of the 21st April.

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The day before I met up with my mate (from APJ and now a ABR contributor),  Val the Cookie Queen and her fabulous daughter, Blundeswunder, over from Austria. We met at the Frederic Malle store in Burlington Arcade and immediately tried the forthcoming Sale Gosse by Fanny Bal. It has notes of pettigrain, neroli, bergamot, rosemary, Malabar and violet. On me, it’s a very lovely, sweet-but-not-too-sweet violet cologne-style fragrance. I didn’t pick up on the much talked about bubblegum.

 

While Blundeswunder scoured Topshop, Val and I did some sniffing downstaits in the cafe. ABR reader, Crikey, had sent Val some of Dior’s discontinued Mitzah and very generously included some vintage Miss Dior for me – whoop!

 

Later in the day we met up with Antonio Gardoni of Bogue Profumo for drinks. He is always excellent company and was on the judging panel for the Awards. They sent him no fewer than 180 vials of scent to assess.

 

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Antonio and Val the Cookie Queen

 

On the morning of the Awards, eight of us met for brunch at The Diner in Spitalfields. This fragrant group included Vanessa of Bonkers About Perfume, Megan of Megan in Sainte Maxime, Lucy of Indieperfumes, regular commenter Lady Jane Grey and the superstar that is Margo, over from Poland. Just as much chatting and sniffing as eating took place, as you can imagine.

 

Lucy brought us lots of American indie samples to try from brands like Kerosene and For Strange Women. Val brought the new releases from the Hermssence collection.  The three perfumes are Cedar Sambac, Myrrh Eglantine and Agar Abene. The two oils are Musc Pallida and Cardamusc. Musc Pallida was beautiful but far too ethereal for £275. The one I really fell for was Cedar Sambac.

After brunch we made our way west to the niche perfume store Bloom, in Covent Garden. I’m very pleased they now stock Aussie brand Naomi Goodsir. Her niche fragrances are distinctive in a world of blah. The latest addition, the striking Nuit de Bakelite, was a finalist in the year’s Independent Category of the Awards – review to come.

 

 

The Art and Olfaction Awards celebrates independent and artisan perfumery from across the globe.  The city location changes each year (in 2017 it was Berlin) and this year they were held at The Tabernacle, Notting Hill. If you’re interested, you can read the full list of 2018 finalists and judges here. It’s fantastic that the Awards shine a spotlight on the great work indie and artisan perfumers are doing.

The event was very well attended (and rather hot) with musical accompaniment from a samba band.

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I was excited to be reunited with Portia from the back-in-business Australian Perfume Junkies. Happily, I was seated near the dynamic duo that is Nick Gilbert and Thomas Dunckley who recently quite rightly won the Innovation Jasmine Award for their brilliant Fume Chat podcast.

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Portia, Nick and Thomas

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Michael, Portia, Val and Me

A lot of indie perfumers were in attendance including Josh Meyer of Imaginary Authors, Dawn Spencer Hurwitz of DSH Perfumes and Andy Tauer.

Andy Tauer, Denyse Beaulieu and Sarah McCartney all presented awards (pictured below).

 

 

Here are the winners, who each received ‘The Golden Pear’.

 

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ARTISAN CATEGORY WINNERS

Chienoir
by BedeauX
CD/ Perfumer: Amanda Beadle

Club Design
by The Zoo
CD/ Perfumer: Christophe Laudamiel

INDEPENDENT CATEGORY WINNERS

Eau de Virginie
by Au Pays de la Fleur d’Oranger
Perfumer: Jean-Claude Gigodot

Nuit de Bakélite
By Naomi Goodsir
Perfumer: Isabelle Doyen

SADAKICHI AWARD WINNER

(Experimental Work with Scent)

Under the Horizon
by Oswaldo Macia
Perfume: Ricardo Moya (IFF)

AFTEL AWARD FOR HANDMADE PERFUME

Pays Dogon
By Monsillage (Canada)
Perfumer: Isabelle Michaud

CONTRIBUTION TO SCENT CULTURE

Peter de Cupere (Belgium)

 

Above: Naomi Goodsir with perfumer Isabelle Doyen and Chrisophe Laudamiel

It was a fun night, not least because it was a great excuse to catch up with friends from near and far.

 

See you in Amsterdam for the 2019 Awards?

 

 

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A Stunning New Word – And Some Ramblings

By Val the Cookie Queen

Hi Guys 
 
Dropping in for my bi-monthly visit here at A Bottled Rose.  About a year ago I heard the most wonderful word used on the radio, sometime around 4.00am.   I sleep with BBC World Service playing softly at the side of the bed. I often hear interesting things but have no recollection when I wake up.  However on this occasion I got up and wrote the word down.  I have been waiting ever since to present it in a post.  
 
ANTICAPPOINTMENT
 
Forgive me those who are familiar with the word,  I was not.   It covers a host of events and situations in life.
I will in this case use it in relation to my feelings regarding the current perfume scene. My anticipation at new releases and the continual disappointment that follows. Anticappointment.
Perfume is subjective, we all know that, I name no names.  Nine out of ten things that I sniff are awful and the one out of ten that isn’t is not what I would buy. Hahahaha – it makes you wonder that I don’t just give up, huh?
To give up an addiction one first has to want to, and I don’t.  
Before anyone jumps out at me, I know there is good new stuff, but let us be honest here, it’s few and far between.  
 
Fear not.  I still have classic signs of addiction.  I recently bought 50mls of Dior”s discontinued Mitzah from a perfumista friend who scored a half gallon in Paris.  
I tried it once years ago and did not like it.  LMAO.  But I have moved on and I reckon I am gonna love it now.  It was shipped to Tara and I will get it next week. 
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Which brings me nicely to my ramblings.  I’m heading to London tomorrow, along with BlondesWunder, and as you read this we will be in Pack’n’Panic mode.  
I will get two full days with Tara, an evening with Portia, time with Bonkers Vanessa, a meet up with Megan In St Maxime, and most of us are going to The Art and Olfaction Awards. Keep your eyes out on my Instagram …
anima vi
 
I have a date with a favourite blogger, (to be revealed in my next post) and together we will spend some time with Nathalie Vinciguerra, the founder and CEO of Anima Vinci.  These perfumes excite me and come highly recommended.  Stay tuned. 
 
What perfume will I wear to the Art and Olfaction Awards? I hear you ask. Why Vero Profumo of course. Naja Eau de Parfum, including notes of red apple and leather. Launch date to be announced.  
apple
 
Have you ever been anticappointed?
 
Britain Bound Bussis
CQ
 
 Apple image by John Hyde Phillips

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Slowdive by Hiram Green

Notes: Neroli, Orange flower, Tobacco flower, Dried fruit, Beeswax, Tuberose and Resins.

Hiram Green makes high quality, opulent perfumes that sing on the skin. My particular favourite of his collection is the glorious sunlit orange blossom, Dilettante. These beautiful fragrances are handcrafted from natural ingredients at his base in the Netherlands. A bonus is that they are available in 10ml sprays as well as 50ml bottles.

His latest release is the evocatively titled Slowdiveslowdive.png

Slowdive is a languid, floral tobacco-themed fragrance and its name suits it perfectly. After an opening of unctuous honey tinged with Play-doh, you gently drift down into its swirl of petals, tobacco leaves and dried fruit.

It’s a lot brighter in feel than many tobacco fragrances which tend to reside in shuttered gentlemen’s clubs. Slowdive has the warmth of days filled with hazy sunshine, ripe fruit and the low hum of bees flitting from bloom to bloom. The beeswax gives it a sumptuously soft landing with its honeyed waxiness.

It makes me think of an autumn harvest, but if you love honeyed and/or tobacco scents, you’ll enjoy it at any time of year. It has a caressing, lazy mood which I’ve found immensely enjoyable on these gloomy London days. It’s the feeling you get when you kick off your shoes and sink into a big, squashy armchair at the end of a tiring day. It has that sense of letting go and having nothing better to do than watch the sun melt into the horizon, bleeding into colours of amber, gold and ochre.

Slowdive is a fragrance to relax into; a place to rest your aching bones. The sillage is low-key but within its orbit, you can’t mistake its distinctive character.

One thing to make clear regarding the presence of tuberose, is that there’s no need to be put off if you normally hesitate at its mention in notes lists. As I’ve said before, natural tuberose is not the stonker of the synthetic variety, which can trample over everything in sight. Here, the natural absolute adds a flowery creaminess to the composition without overpowering the other accords. It’s probably what makes Slowdive such an uncommon tobacco perfume.

It’s definitely a fragrance anyone could wear comfortably and combining the traditionally masculine tobacco with the uber feminine tuberose, makes for a clever and interesting pairing that works beautifully.

 

autumn_bee_wallpaper_by_sortvind-d5bykvu

 

How do you feel about tobacco/honey perfumes?

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