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Musings about Perfume and Life
Guerlain Vega
Suzanne’s Perfume Journal
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A Conversation on Arabie

A Package from Christos: Greek Sandals & Oud Cuir d'Arabie

A Package from Ines

A Package from Lavanya

A More Affordable Olfactionary

A Week of Wearing What I Like

Amouage Dia (pour femme)

Amouage Dia (pour homme)

Amouage Epic Woman

Amouage Gold

Amouage Interlude Man

Amouage Jubilation 25 

Amouage Lyric Woman

Amouage Memoir Woman

Amouage Opus I

Amouage Opus III

Amouage Opus IV

Amouage Opus V

Amouage Opus VI

Amouage Tribute

Amouage Ubar

Annick Goutal Ambre Fetiche

Annick Goutal Encens Flamboyant

Annick Goutal Heure Exquise

Annick Goutal Petite Cherie

Annick Goutal Sables

Annick Goutal Vanille Charnelle

April Aromatics Calling All Angels

April Aromatics Bohemian Spice

April Aromatics Jasmina 

April Aromatics Nectar of Love

April Aromatics Rose L'Orange

Aroma M Geisha Green

Aroma M Geisha Rouge

Arquiste Anima Dulcis

Arquiste Boutonniere no. 7

At the Moment (Chanel 22 & Marshall Crenshaw)

At the Moment (Contemplating Change & Habit Rouge)

At the Moment (Marron Chic & Paris)

At the Moment (More Midsummer Delights/Epic/Geisha Noire)

At the Moment (Saki & Lubin Idole edt)

At the Moment (Secret de Suzanne /D'Orsay L'Intrigante)

At the Moment (Spring Pretties/Un Air de Samsara)

At the Moment (Summery Things...Love Coconut)

At the Moment (Vera Wang & Fireman's Fair novel)

Ava Luxe Café Noir

Beatnik Emptiness Incense

Best of 2009

Bond No. 9 Andy Warhol Silver Factory

Bond No. 9 Brooklyn

Bond No. 9 Little Italy

Bond No. 9 New Haarlem

Bottega Veneta eau de parfum

Breath of God

Byredo Green

By Kilian Amber Oud

By Kilian Forbidden Games and In the City of Sin

Calyx by Prescriptives

Canturi by Stefano Canturi

Capote, Truman & Evening in Paris

Carner Barcelona D600

Caron Aimez-Moi

Caron French Cancan

Caron Parfum Sacre

Caron Tabac Blond

Caron Tubereuse

Caron Yatagan

Cartier II L'Heure Convoitee

Cartier IV L'Heure Fougueuse

Chanel 31 Rue Cambon

Chanel Bel Respiro

Chanel Chance

Chanel Coco

Chanel Coromandel

Chanel Cuir de Russie

Chanel Egoiste

Chanel No. 5 (vintage)

Chanel No. 22

Chantecaille Petales

Chantilly Dusting Powder

Clive Christian C for Women

Comme des Garcons Daphne

Comme des Garcons LUXE Champaca

Comme des Garcons Series 7 Sweet Nomad Tea

Costes by Costes

Coty Ambre Antique

Coty Chypre

Coty Paris

Creature by Kerosene

Creed Acqua Fiorentina

Creed Fleurs de Bulgarie

Creed Virgin Island Water

DSH Perfumes Bancha Extreme

DSH Perfumes Quinacridone Violet 

DSH Perfumes Vert pour Madame


Devilscent Project

Dior Diorissimo (vintage)

Donna Karan Black Cashmere

EnVoyage Vents Ardents

EnVoyage Zelda

Estee Lauder Private Collection

Estee Lauder Private Collection Jasmine White Moss

Etat Libre d'Orange Rien, Rossy de Palma & Noel au Balcon

Faberge Woodhue Cologne

Favorite Fall Fragrances

Fendi Uomo

Fragrances for Sweden

Frapin 1697 Absolu Parfum

Frederic Malle Angeliques Sous La Pluie

Frederic Malle Bigarade Concentrée

Frederic Malle Carnal Flower

Frederic Malle Dans Tes Bras

Frederic Malle Geranium Pour Monsieur

Frederic Malle Iris Poudre

Frederic Malle Le Parfum de Therese

Frederic Malle Lipstick Rose

Frederic Malle Noir Epices

Frederic Malle Portrait of a Lady

Frederic Malle Une Fleur de Cassie

Frederic Malle Une Rose

Geoffrey Beene Grey Flannel

Ghosts of Perfumes Past, Present & Future

Gone Fishin'

Gucci Eau de Parfum

Gucci L'Arte di Gucci

Gucci Pour Homme

Guerlain Angelique Noire

Guerlain Aqua Allegoria Lys Soleia

Guerlain Aroma Allegoria Exaltant

Guerlain Attrape Coeur

Guerlain Chamade

Guerlain Encens Mythique d'Orient

Guerlain Jicky

Guerlain Mayotte

Guerlain Parure

Guerlain Samsara Parfum

Guerlain Un Air de Samsara

Guerlain Vega

Guerlain Vetiver (vintage)

Guy Laroche J'ai Ose (vintage)

Happy Solstice

Hermes 24, Faubourg

Hermes Caleche (vintage)

Hermes Eau des Merveilles

Hermes Hiris

Hermes Iris Ukiyoe

Hermes Jour d'Hermes

Hermes L'Ambre des Merveilles

Histoires de Parfums 1740

Histoires de Parfums 1828

Histoires de Parfums Blanc Violette

Histoires de Parfums Vert Pivoine

Hometown Portrait, State College, PA

Honore des Pres Vamp a NY

House of Matriarch Carmine

How I Store Decants

Il Profumo Cannabis

In Memory (w/mention of Lanvin Arpege)

Jacomo #02

Jacomo #09 (Link to my review in Sniffapalooza Magazine)

Jean Desprez Bal a Versailles

Jean Patou Joy

Jean Patou 1000

Jo Malone Saffron Cologne Intense

Jo Malone Sweet Milk Cologne 

Juliet by Juliet Stewart

Kai Eau de Parfum

Kenzo Jungle l’Elephant

Kenzo Summer

Lancome Magie Noire (vintage) 

Lanvin Via Lanvin (vintage) 

L'Artisan Parfumeur Nuit de Tubereuse

L'Artisan Parfumeur Orchidee Blanche 

L’Artisan Parfumeur Passage d’Enfer

L'Artisan Parfumeur Seville a l'Aube

L’Artisan Parfumeur Tea for Two

L’Artisan Parfumeur Traversee du Bosphore

La Via del Profumo Balsamo Della Mecca

La Via del Profumo Hindu Kush

La Via del Profumo Milano Caffe

La Via del Profumo Oud Caravan Project

La Via del Profumo Sharif

La Via del Profumo Tawaf

Le Labo Gaiac 10

Le Labo Iris 39

Le Labo Patchouli 24

Le Labo Poivre 23

Little Lists

Lorenzo Villoresi Yerbamate

M. Micallef Vanille Orient

Maison Francis Kurkdjian Absolue Pour le Soir

Maison Martin Margiela (untitled) eau de parfum

Maitre Parfumeur et Gantier Eau des Iles

Message In A Bottle 

Michael Storer Winter Star

Miller Harris L'Air de Rien


Missoni (original) by Missoni

Molinard Habanita

Mona Di Orio Nuit Noire

Mona Di Orio Oud

Mona Di Orio Vanille

Montale Black Aoud

Montale Boise Vanille

Montale Intense Tiare

Montale Patchouli Leaves

Montale Red Aoud

More Roses (rose cookie recipe)

My Heart Has Skipped a Beat (summer smells)

My Perfumes Have Theme Songs

Nasomatto China White

Neila Vermeire Creations Bombay Bling

Nina Ricci L'Air du Temps

Nez a Nez Ambre a Sade

Northern Exposure "A Dash of Chanel No. 5"

Odin 04 Petrana (Link to my review in Sniffapalooza Magazine)

Olivier Durbano Black Tourmaline

Omar Sharif Pour Femme

Oriscent Pure Oud Oils

Ormonde Jayne Frangipani

Ormonde Jayne Ormonde Woman

Oscar de la Renta Oscar for Men

O Tannenbaum Joint Blog Project

Parfum d'Empire Azemour

Parfum d'Empire Cuir Ottoman

Parfum d'Empire Equistrius

Parfum d'Empire Musc Tonkin

Parfum d'Empire 3 Fleurs

Parfumerie Generale Aomassai

Parfumerie Generale Bois de Copaiba

Parfumerie Generale Indochine

Parfumerie Generale Un Crime Exotique

Parfums de Nicolai Sacrebleu

Parfums DelRae Amoureuse

Parfums Karl Lagerfeld Sun Moon Stars

Parfums MDCI Chypre Palatin

Parfums Retro Grand Cuir

Paris, je t'aime

Pascal Morabito Or Black 

Perfume Quotes - The English Patient

Prada Infusion d'Iris Absolue

Pretty Perfume Bottles 

Prince Matchabelli Aviance Cologne (vintage) 

Profumum Roma Acqua Viva

Profumum Roma D'Ambrosia

Puredistance I

Puredistance Antonia

Puredistance BLACK

Puredistance M

Puredistance Opardu

Puredistance WHITE

Ramon Monegal Cherry Musk

Ramon Monegal Cuirelle

Ramon Monegal Pure Mariposa

Recipe for Socca

Regina Harris Amber Vanilla Perfume Oil

Regina Harris Frankincense-Myrrh-Rose Maroc Perfume Oil

Robert Piguet Fracas

Robert Piguet Visa

Rochas Mystere 

Rome Vacation Photos

Sammarco Perfumes Bond-T

San Francisco Holiday

Sarah Horowitz Parfums' Joy Comes From Within & Beauty Comes From Within

Scented Reading

Scents of the Mediterranean

Scentuous Reading: One Hundred Years of Solitude

Serge Lutens Arabie

Serge Lutens Borneo 1834

Serge Lutens Boxeuses

Serge Lutens Chêne

Serge Lutens Chergui

Serge Lutens Fille en Aiguilles

Serge Lutens Five O’Clock Au Gingembre

Serge Lutens Fumerie Turque

Serge Lutens Miel de Bois

Serge Lutens Muscs Koublai Khan

Serge Lutens Tubereuse Criminelle

Serge Lutens Un Lys

Serge Lutens Vetiver Oriental

Slumberhouse Rume

Smell Bent Florist's Fridge

Snow Days

Sonoma Scent Studio Incense Pure

Sonoma Scent Studio Jour Ensoleille

Sonoma Scent Studio Voile de Violette

Sonoma Scent Studio Winter Woods (brief mention)

SoOud Ouris Parfum Nectar

S-Perfume 100% Love {More}

Stone Harbor, NJ Vacaton pix (non-perfume related)

Strange Invisible Perfumes Lyric Rain

Sweden Is For Lovers

Swiss Arabian Nouf

T is for Taxes

Tauer Perfumes: Incense Extrême, Incense Rosé, Lonestar Memories, & Reverie au Jardin

Tauer Perfumes Vetiver Dance

The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay

The Bechdel Test

The Diary of a Nose, Book Review

The Different Company Jasmin de Nuit

The Intimacy of Scent

Thoughts of a Perfume Collector


Tokyo Milk Ex Libris

Unlocking an Unknown: Webber Parfum 6T

Velvet & Sweet Pea's Purrfumery Bed of Roses

Venimus Vidimus Vicimus, or How 3 Perfume Bloggers and a Husband Took Rome

Vero Profumo Kiki, Onda, and Rubj

Vero Profumo Mito

Viktoria Minya Eau de Hongrie

Viktoria Minya Hedonist

Viktor & Rolfe Flowerbomb

What I’m Lovin’ Now

Xerjoff Mamluk

YOSH Perfumes Ginger Ciao

Yves Saint Laurent Nu


I’ll warn you right up front that this post is more or less a film review, with a little perfume thrown in at the end. So if you want to click away, or just skip to the bottom of the post, go ahead. It won’t hurt my feelings. There’s no rhyme or reason for me writing this and posting it here, other than to say that, for better or worse, this is how my thought process works…this is how my perfume obsession crosses over into other areas of my life. I can’t read a book, watch a movie, or eat a meal without perfume figuring into it in some way. In my head, I am always scenting fictional characters, pairing perfumes to menus, matching fragrances to special, and even mundane, occasions. On the page, I suppose I am more interested in exploring a scented life than in focusing on the scents themselves. More and more, I realize that this is what my perfume journal has become: a venue for documenting my life and my interests through fragrance.


Anyway, thanks to Netflix, I’ve recently become enamored with the charming little film, Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day, adapted from Winifred Watson’s 1938 novel of the same name. Frances McDormand plays the role of Guinevere Pettigrew, an unemployed London governess, very much down-at-the-heels, who in a case of mistaken identity lucks into a position as a social secretary to luscious American starlet, Delysia Lafosse (played by Amy Adams). It’s not a long appointment—only 24 hours, to be exact—but long enough to change the fortunes and outlooks of both women.


When we first meet her, Miss Pettigrew has just been sacked from the last of what appears to be a series of unsuccessful nannying jobs, in which she has demonstrated a habit of granting latitude to her young charges while adopting a rather restrictive view of their parents. (“Mrs. Brummegen was, well, fond of the sherry, if you take my meaning. As a vicar’s daughter I found her rather difficult,” Miss Pettigrew explains to the head of her employment agency, Miss Holt, who responds in kind: “She found you rather difficult, Miss Pettigrew, and that is, I’m afraid, a recurring theme….Our clients don’t adapt to suit your needs, Miss Pettigrew. You adapt to them.”)


Before being shown the door at the employment agency, Miss Pettigrew overhears a telephone conversation that leads her to steal the calling card of Delysia Lafosse from Miss Holt’s desk. Thinking that the Lafosse household is in need of a nanny, she hurries there to snag the job before the agency can send someone. Her misunderstanding soon comes to light, however, when she is greeted at the door of the luxury flat by the deliciously ditzy Delysia, who has spent the night entertaining a gentleman caller and now needs help getting him out of bed before her other boyfriend—the owner of the flat—arrives home. After Miss Pettigrew succeeds at dispatching the young man and covering up any evidence that he had been there, Delysia believes she has found just the woman to (literally) keep her affairs in order.


Miss Pettigrew, who without work has been reduced to standing in line at the soup kitchen for her meals, is not so sure. “A little desperation has made me a smoking, swearing accomplice to misdeeds in a den of iniquity!” she laments at first. But realizing that a fortuitous opportunity is within her grasp, and perhaps also reckoning that the role of social secretary to a society doll is not unlike being the governess of a wayward child, she decides to plunge in and fully embrace the day that is about to unfold before her. She is soon pulled into the cheeky young woman’s orbit, but without losing her own moral compass. For perhaps the first time in her life, Miss Pettigrew manages to stay true to herself while adapting an attitude that allows her to go with the flow rather than against it. In doing so, a marvelous chemistry develops between the two women, both of whom undergo a transformation of sorts. By the end of the film, Miss Pettigrew’s life will expand and Delysia’s life will contract a bit, and both women will benefit for it.


With its old-fashioned sense of comedy, as well as its Cinderella storyline, Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day is a sweet and beautifully filmed piece of whimsy, with enough substance to keep it from dissolving into mere froth. It’s the kind of film that should appeal to perfume lovers who have a fondness for vintage froufrou (and I know that many perfume lovers do!) because its period costumes and furnishings are to die for. Delysia might only be a starlet, rather than a star, but everything about her life is over-the-top glamorous. Hers is a world of fashion shows and nightclubs (the boyfriend who owns the flat also owns the Scarlet Peacock, where she is the featured jazz singer). Delysia sips champagne in the bathtub, throws catered parties, and entertains in a boudoir that has clearly been decorated for her, with walls covered in hand-painted chinoiserie. It’s only natural to wonder what glorious perfume Delysia would spray with reckless abandon over her nubile body and among the folds of her expensive lingerie.

Guerlain Vega, originally launched in 1936 and named for the brightest star in the constellation Lyra, immediately springs to mind. I’ve not smelled the original, yet I was fortunate to receive a generous sample (from a beautiful perfume goddess, no less!) of Vega in its latest incarnation. Guerlain reissued the fragrance in 2006, making it exclusive to their flagship store in Paris, at first, and then to a select few of their other boutiques. Often compared with Chanel No. 5, Vega is an aldehydic floriental scent with a powdery floral heart, a tickle of leathery/animalic nuances, and a creamy sandalwood base. I would characterize it as being a little less aldehydic than Chanel No. 5 and a lot warmer. On my skin, Vega behaves more like a meteor than a star: it has a very quick trajectory from top to drydown. There is the initial pop of bright aldehydes, a swoosh of florals that are hard to separate and name (though rose and iris are most detectable), and a quick descent into light powder and wood. I think it might be the iris note in Vega that lends a bit of a leathery feel to the scent during the first fifteen minutes of wear. It’s difficult to find a list of fragrance notes for Vega, but from what I’ve gathered here and there on the blogosphere, they include ylang-ylang, orange blossom, jasmine, rose, aldehyde, iris, vanilla, sandalwood, and rosewood.


The more I think about it, Chanel No. 5 is the scent that actually reminds me of a star (in both the astronomical and theatrical sense of the word): it seems more imperious, more aloof and unmoving than Vega. I suppose that’s why Vega also seems a better choice for Delysia Lafosse’s character: it has that same champagne burst of 1930s glamour, but it possesses a softer sort of “star” quality—the kind that touches down to earth and is, to my mind, more delightfully accommodating and engaging.

Images: (top) actors Amy Adams and Frances McDormand, playing Delysia Lafosse and Guinevere Pettigrew, in the 2008 film, Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day; (bottom) Amy Adams as Delysia.

Video of the trailer for Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day is from YouTube.com, originally uploaded by manikman.

Posted by Suzanne Keller, 5/18/2009.

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A Perfume Blog (Blacknall Allen)

Another Perfume Blog (Natalie)

Ars Aromatica

Australian Perfume Junkies

Beauty on the Outside

Bloody Frida

Bois de Jasmin

Bonkers About Perfume

Ca Fleure Bon

ChickenFreak's Obsessions


Eyeliner on a Cat

Fragrance Bouquet

From Top to Bottom - Perfume Patter

Giovanni Sammarco (artisanal perfumer) blog

Grain de Musc

I Smell Therefore I Am


Katie Puckrik Smells

L'eter - Blog of Olfactive Experience

Memory of Scent

Muse in Wooden Shoes 

Nathan Branch

Natural Perfumery by Salaam

Notes on Shoes, Cake & Perfume

Notes From Josephine

Notes From the Ledge

Now Smell This

Oh, True Apothecary! 


Olfactoria's Travels 

Parfumistans blogg


Perfume Posse

Perfume Shrine

Perfume-Smellin' Things

Purple Paper Planes

Redolent of Spices

Riktig Parfym: Ramblings of a Fragrant Fanatic

Scented Salamander

Scents of Place

Scents of Self

Smelly Blog

Sorcery of Scent 

Sweet Diva

The Alembicated Genie 

The Cow Jumped Over the Moon

The Fragrant Man

The French Exit

The Non-Blonde 

The Perfumed Maze

The Perfume Magpie

The Scented Hound

The Sounds of Scent

The Vintage Perfume Vault

This Blog Really Stinks 

Undina's Looking Glass 

WAFT by Carol 

Yesterday's Perfume

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