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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

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

Deneuve

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 Aqua Allegoria Lys Soleia

Guerlain Aroma Allegoria Exaltant

Guerlain Attrape Coeur

Guerlain Chamade

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 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

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

Miscellany

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 3 Fleurs

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

Ramon Monegal Cherry Musk

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

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

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

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 Diary of a Nose, Book Review

The Different Company Jasmin de Nuit

The Intimacy of Scent

Thoughts of a Perfume Collector

Tightly

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 Hedonist

Viktor & Rolfe Flowerbomb

What I’m Lovin’ Now

Xerjoff Mamluk

YOSH Perfumes Ginger Ciao

Yves Saint Laurent Nu

My Perfumes Have Theme Songs.  What, Yours Don’t?

 

I am not a huge fan of television, but every few years a series will come along that inspires that “must-see-TV” feeling.  In the late nineties, that show was the wacky and surreal Ally McBeal, about a group of young, hotshot lawyers so wrapped up in themselves that they are constantly wrestling with their egos and eccentricities and perpetually tangled love lives, not to mention the oddball clients their firm attracts.  The two most neurotic lawyers at the firm, Ally McBeal (played by Calista Flockhart) and John Cage (Peter MacNicol), eventually try to get a grip on their problems by submitting themselves to the therapist’s couch.  Of course, the therapist turns out to be the highly unorthodox Dr. Tracy Clark (British comedienne Tracey Ullman), a smile therapist who urges Ally to pick a theme song for herself—something she can play in her head to make herself feel better; something snappy that will gift her a lift when she walks down the street.  (Dr. Clark’s theme song is the bouncy, 1969 hit, “Tracy,” by The Cuff Links, which she’s had since she was ten years old, she informs a skeptical Ally.)

 

I started thinking about this during a recent “oh, my goodness!” moment in which I realized that some of the perfumes I wear seem to have theme songs attached to them.  Songs that may or may not have an obvious connection to the perfumes themselves, but that nevertheless pop into my head whenever I’m wearing them.  Actually, I shouldn’t label them “theme songs”—what I should really file this under is Perfumes That Inspire Earworms.  But since I like the idea of a theme song (yup, I have one—a John Sousa march in which I fantasize about catching a fiery baton); since I am kookier than the entire cast of characters on Ally McBeal; and since I have a fondness for anthropomorphizing my perfumes, what follows below is a brief list of perfumes and their respective theme songs (you can call them earworms, if you want.)

 

Fragrance: Montale Intense Tiaré

Theme song: “Summer Breeze” by Seals & Crofts

 

See the curtains hangin' in the window, in the evenin' on a Friday night.
A little light a-shinin' through the window, lets me know everything is alright.
Summer breeze, makes me feel fine, blowing through the jasmine in my mind.
Summer breeze, makes me feel fine, blowing through the jasmine in my mind.

Sweet days of summer, the jasmine's in bloom. July is dressed up and playing her tune.

Not a lot to explain here: the connection is kind of obvious.  I only very recently came round to loving this sweet little number by Montale, which practically floats around its wearer like the skirt of a gauzy sundress caught on a tropical breeze.  Despite the “Intense” in the name, as far as white florals go, this one is easy to wear: it dispenses with the normal white-floral drama queen antics and gently releases its petals to the sighing wind.  This is not a jasmine-heavy scent; it’s a Tahitian-inspired white-floral accord that features the tiaré flower (a type of gardenia), ylang-ylang, jasmine, roses, vanilla, and coconut.  Its connection to the old Seals & Croft song has less to do with jasmine than it does the notion of a “summer breeze” with flower petals floating upon it.  There aren’t many things in life that are easy, which is why I so enjoy the things that are.

 

Fragrance: Geoffrey Beene Grey Flannel

Theme song: “Sharp Dressed Man” by ZZ Top

 

Clean shirt, new shoes
and I don't know where I am goin' to.
Silk suit, black tie,
I don't need a reason why.
They come runnin' just as fast as they can
cause every girl crazy 'bout a sharp dressed man.

 

This iconic men’s scent of the 1970s makes me feel suave and immaculately groomed when I wear it.  This violet with its green leaves (or at least the suggestion of green leaves by way of sage) is a very masculine violet with a dry, almost antiseptic edge to it.  It’s that edge which seems to inspire the ZZ Top men to play their hard-driving anthem to the Sharp Dressed Man in my ear all day long.  And I’m not complaining, as it’s a good combination: between the fragrance and the song, I feel tastefully polished but with a hopped-up energy and confidence.

 

Fragrance: Hermes Eau des Merveilles

Theme song: “I Saw the Light” by Todd Rundgren

 

It was late last night,

I was feeling something wasn’t right.

There was not another soul in sight,

only you, only you.

So we walked along,

though I knew that there was something wrong,

and a feeling hit me oh so strong about you.

Then you gazed up at me, and the answer was plain to see,

‘cause I saw the light in your eyes, in your eyes.

 

You know, Eau des Merveilles is such a quiet, intimate scent, and yet masterful in its ability to create an emotion.  For me, that emotion is a feeling of being right with the world, comfortable in my skin, and cozily in love with someone special.  Happily for me, that person is my husband, who shares my fondness for Todd Rundgren and, in particular, this song.  Eau des Merveilles’ translucent quality—its sheer orange notes, baby-soft woods and ambergris, with a sparkling dusting of pink pepper—is the olfactory equivalent of the light you see when you look in the eyes of someone who loves you.  Eau des Merveilles and “I Saw the Light” share a quiet but shimmering presence.

 

Fragrance:  Pascal Morabito Or Black

Theme song: “Beautiful Stranger” by Madonna

 

Haven't we met?
You're some kind of beautiful stranger.
You could be good for me,
I have a taste for danger.
If I'm smart then I'll run away,
but I'm not so I guess I'll stay.
Heaven forbid,
I take my chance on a beautiful stranger.

 

Or Black, the leather-chypre men’s scent from Pascal Morabito, has a deliciously gothic quality to it.  It smells like motorcycle leather worn by a man or woman who has a fondness for expensive brandy.  And I always, always hear “Beautiful Stranger” when I put on Or Black—even more so than the words, the psychedelic sound of the music with its strange flute trills near the end of the song.

 

Okay, now that I’ve hoisted my perfume freak flag up to full mast…umm, would you care to join me?  Entre nous, do your perfumes have their own theme songs?  If you’d like to share, leave word in my guestbook. (Guestbook deactivated, sorry.)

Images: (top) film still of actress Calista Flockhart playing Ally McBeal; album images are from Amazon.com.

Posted by Suzanne Keller, 6/27/2008.

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