Sharing my Perfume Passion

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Sandra

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Hiya wonderful smelling APJers! How is everyone doing?

As many know, I have had a love affair with perfume since I was a child. I have other passions as well, such as travel, photography, sketching and music. I am not sure if it is the language or age, but I am obviously more comfortable in my skin now and where I would normally keep mum about my loves, I find myself expressing myself more freely. This is a great opportunity for me because it takes me to new places and I am meeting so many wonderful people.

A friend of mine approached me a few weeks ago to speak at an expat morning meeting at the school. About perfume! I was skeptical at first but decided to go ahead and it was a pleasant revelation for me of how open and curious people were.

Sharing my Perfume Passion

I decided to share my love of Neela Vermeire Creations. Big question was how to go about doing so. I adore Neela’s perfumes as they use some of my favorite notes and spices. The Netherlands is the place to live if you love flowers so my first stop was the florist where I discussed what kinds of flowers are readily available in November and they did a marvelous job. I chose to include fragrant flowers and not all are used in the NVC perfumes. We had lily, tuberose, freesia, ‘Yvette Piagaitte’ rose, ‘Free Spirit’ rose, a third rose which they could not name and finally stock also known as matthiola incana which is clove-like in scent.

I included fresh mango, cinnamon bark, cardamom pods, vanilla bean paste, essential oils of frankincense, sandalwood and jasmine and a leather clutch for its scent.

We kicked off the meeting by starting to sniff the various flowers. Many of the participants were astonished at how different each of the roses smelled.

There was the obvious love/hate reaction with tuberose. Interestingly though those from tropical climates loved the tuberose. We moved through the spices, oils and finally the fresh cut mango. Once that was done I sprayed Bombay Bling onto a tester paper and all were amazed that they could easily identify the mango and also the lychee. A friend of mine loved Trayee not for the incense but for the ganja which she could identify (I cannot). Several participants could identify cardamom or cinnamon.

In attendance was a man who did not know exactly what to expect but enthusiastically sniffed the flowers, spices and oils. When it came to testing the perfumes he was under the impression that a man could not possibly wear any of these perfumes. I convinced him to try Mohur as I find men can really rock its spicy rose with glorious sandalwood. He loved it and went away with the knowledge that perfume can be unisex and that it will smell differently on each and every one of us!

Each of the participants had a clear favorite so at the end of the talk I gave the participants samples of the perfumes they were interested in and a flower of their choosing. It was a lovely morning and I would like to thank the expat group for giving me this opportunity.

Neela Vermeire Creations Discovery Sample Set €55 

Do you have any inhibitions when it comes to talking about your perfume passion? What would you talk about?

Wishing everyone a wonderful start to December.

Oodles of fragrant kisses,
Sandra xo

 

(ED: All photos supplied by Sandra. Thank you. XXX)

Friends: Circle of Pedicures

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Portia

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Hello APJ Crew,

Veering slightly off topic today. A couple of the comments on Scent Diary lately have loved how many friends we fit into our lives every week. It’s super important that we catch up with the inner crew but also there are mates that we see much less. This is one of the ways I manage to keep seeing as many of the crew as possible.

Just so you know I’m sitting in a lovely cloud of CHANEL Antaeus Pour Homme vintage EdT. It is fairly gorgeous.

Friends: Circle of Pedicures

Here’s the trick.

Choose a day that’s really easy for you 90% of the time. This is about YOU having a group of friends around. If some people can’t fit your schedule, no worries, others will.

We chose 10am Sunday morning. We are the first people in the shop and even if it takes an hour we still get to Yum-Cha (Dim-Sum) before it gets too busy to find a table.

Find a good nail shop somewhere in the middle of you all. Look up reviews online. It needs some kind of food next door or nearby. We prefer Yum-Cha but a cafe, restaurant, milk bar is fine as long as you can sit and chatter some more.

Select about 20 people that you like, love or would like to know better and find out which of them gets pedicures done. This bit is best done face to face to get the most positive response. People will make up excuses in their head if they’re not looking at your earnest, honest face asking to spend extra time together. Currently on my Pedicure list there are 12 people. As time goes by you’ll delete and add to the list, some people get busy on the day you .

Every 2-4 weeks send your group a text asking who’s free and interested. You will rarely get everyone but it is an excellent way to catch up with whoever is available. Also, as soon as your Pedi Time becomes a thing new people will want to join.

Sometimes I only target the friend/s that I really want to see and we go as a two/three/four some.

We find it a zero stress way of getting together, exactly the right amount of time for catch ups and no one has to clean their house for guests.

Some people will choose to skip the pedi some weeks and just come for the food or vice-versa. No sweat, whatever works for them.

Always ring the Pedicure Store two days before so they can have enough staff on hand.

So there’s the trick, it works a treat.
Portia xx

Yes, I know. My hairy Hobbit feet look funny with polish but I don’t care.

Scent Diary: 18.9 – 24.9.2017

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Portia

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Hey Crew,

I’m home. Best place on earth.

What a holiday, heaps more India to share. More friends, fun, food and especially fragrance.

Scent Diary: 18.9 – 24.9.2017

Monday 18:

OK, it’s Monday morning and I’m in Alwar, Rajasthan, India. Can’t sleep because Australia is having a non-binding postal vote about Equality, Marriage Equality to be specific. The hate, lies and vitriol spewed by the NO camp has me nearly hyperventilating with rage and a resurgence of the sinking feeling that comes from external bullying (the internal can be pretty bad too) that I know so well from a basically sunlit youth full of sly, snide, confrontational, half-heard, whispered, shouted, aggressive, implied and ultimately violent homophobia.

If you are Australian and have not yet voted, PLEASE VOTE YES.

FAST DAY!! I know, bet you never thought you’d read me saying that? Well, Varun fasts twice a week, he’s allowed juice and fruit till sunset. We added masala chai to the list and some peanuts for me at around 6pm because I was about to eat the furniture.

Varun and I did some more shopping today. Some final gifts. We sat in the shade drinking soda and watched the world go by for a happy 20 minutes.

Wearing Oliver & Co Vaninger today. It’s a freaky, weird ginger masala chai scent and smells SO GOOD in the Indian heat.

Dinner was with Varun, Mummy and Pappa and Achal (their older son). The food was wonderful. They are a pretty quiet family when they’re together so conversation was happily sporadic.

Afterwards I was ambushed with an after dinner party. The LAST thing on my list of things to do. There’s a particular person at these events who tries to negatively engage people, you know opens with a derogatory comment. This years opening gambit was “Hello, you got so bald.” I shook his hand, thanked him, turned on my heel and walked out of the party. Varun didn’t even have to be asked, he just handed me the car keys and off I went. The bully came after me saying, “Aussies aren’t such wimps” and equally endearing things. Finally he came up behind me, grabbed my shoulders and said in my ear, “Surely I haven’t offended you.” My reply was to shrug him off, say, “Yes….. Don’t touch me” and get in the car, locking the door. The usual going and froing of host and bully entreating me to stay. Nope. I wasn’t angry, passionate or riled, “I am nearly 50 years old. I don’t need to be around and deal with assholes. Thank you for the invitation and hospitality but I’m not interested in joining you. Please take this time to teach your friend some manners. Thank you, goodbye.” Varun got in the car and we drove away.

I didn’t stand up to a bully but I did call his bad behaviour and refuse to engage without raising my voice or even blood pressure. It felt, and feels still, powerful in resistance. Right now I’m proud of how it went.

Now, I’m going to read for a bit and then hit the hay.

Tuesday 19:

It’s my last full day in India. Varun and I had breakfast together, he came to my room and we drank lashings of masala chai with jam toast and fruit. He has some catch up work to do so I’m taking my Kindle and going down to the garden to read in the sun.

When I got back to my room I really wanted some fragrance so chose Neela Vermeire Creations Mohur. The most precious beauty of her collection for me. A perfect fit coming in hot and sweaty, it gave the fragrance a whole new lived in feel.

Painted some signs for the hotel, there were about 7 in all but these two are the ones I really loved.

Varun and I went to a nearby hotel, one of the Neemrana group, for lunch. It was a buffet and the selection, quality, taste and presentation were super fabulous. There were enough waitstaff for one per person because the restaurant was pretty quiet. Can’t compliment the experience enough. Dessert was this incredible dish, like deep fried cookie dough, that you have with ice cream. Words fail me…..

At night we hung out at Varun’s hotel. Very chill last night. We ate, chattered and finished off the signs. The night was tinged with the sadness of me leaving tomorrow but still fun. We are so comfortable with each other nowadays that some thinking time between sentences is expected.

Wednesday 20:

Woke up, showered and drenched myself in vintage Miss Dior parfum.

Varun took me for my farewell and Birthday lunch. He’s so funny. PIZZA HUT! My first fast food since arriving in India. It was bloody delicious and he was so chuffed with himself for thinking of it. How could anyone fail to love someone so wonderful?

Then he took me shopping for my Birthday Present. I protested but to no avail. He was determined, and that happens so rarely that I let him have his moment. It was sweet and lovely. I will wear my gift and think of him every time.

On the road, four hours from Alwar to Delhi Airport. Varun and I said our goodbyes at the hotel and now I have a driver who will drop me. As the miles fly by I’m reflecting on what a perfect two weeks we have had. So lucky to have this guy still in my life after 17 years as a lover and BFF.

Woo Hoo! Even though I’m flying China Southern Economy because they are star Alliance and I am Morning Calm with Korean Air I get preferential treatment! That means Priority Boarding and access to the Delhi Airport Business Lounge. Meaning I get free food and drink, have a comfortable seat and super clean toilets while I wait.

I might have done some Duty Free Shopping. I clearly have a problem but I WANTED THEM ALL!!!

CHANEL Antaeus Deodorant Stick, CHANEL Coco Shower Gel & Soap, Gucci Absolue, Narciso Rodriguez EdT and the NEW Guerlain Les Absolus d’Orient 15ml Travel Set

The girl at the Check In desk could not have been sweeter or more helpful. She even gave me a window seat with extra leg room!!

Thursday 21:

Arriving in China next morning there was a girl waiting at the gate with my name on a board. You have to HURRY only 12 minutes till your plane goes. SHIT!!!! She grabbed me and ran, like a marathon running ex-paramilitary sergeant, to the Transfer Gate. Here she ran me past the lines to the Special Needs line, pushed past a group of wheelchairs, and got me to the front where they stamped my passport. Then she RAN me through security, screaming at everyone along the way, and along to our gate another 500m away. I was puffing and blowing like a steam train by now. We get to the gate and I’m like, “Do I have to run down the gangway?” She looks at me and says, “I’m so sorry. Wrong information. One hour twelve minutes. So sorry.” We look at each other and basically collapse laughing, I can’t even breathe at this point. Hilarious. So I take a seat and get my breath back before boarding at a much more dignified pace.

China Southern came through again with an exit row.

We get into Sydney about 30 minutes late at 8pm. Jin is already waiting at the exit gate for me. I get quickly through the electronic passport control and am only the second from our flight at the Baggage Carousel. So I wait, and wait, and wait. There are three bags left on the carousel, none mine. I go to the Baggage Desk and ask. “Oh yes, your luggage did not get on the plane. It will be coming tomorrow.” OK, no biggie. Poor Jin has been waiting at the gate for nearly two hours though so he is less than impressed.

That first hug, when you get to bury your face in their neck and smell home. NOTHING on earth is so good. It’s only been two weeks but I clearly missed this wonderful man.

Doing stuff around the house till nearly midnight and decided the thing I wanted most in the world was a Bubble Bath. Lalique Homage Shower Gel became my bubbling juice. It’s a wonderful masculine scent and it was the perfect balm to 24 hours of travel.

Friday 22:

YAY! I’m home. Jin has a couple of days off and we can hang out together. Slept in till 10am and woke up to a perfect spring sunshiny day. The smell of him cooking mo-mos was all it took to rouse me from my slumber. No one on earth makes them better. A quick swipe in soy sauce and I’m in heaven. Perfect welcome home meal.

I have caught a bit of a throat infection somewhere along the way and am coughing up some spectacular globs of green and yellow.

ALSO, I spend nearly 3 weeks in India eating street, home and restaurant food. My body loves it and is doing perfect poo. Come home for 24 hours and I’m shitting soup. What is wrong with me?

There was quite a bit of perfumed box mail on the table for me when I arrived home. Here’s a pic of the haul while I was gone. Guerlain Mitsouko EdT, Korres Japanese Rose Shower Gel x 2, Bal A Versailles parfums 30ml & 7ml, Tabac Original Shave Soap refill

Today has been a lazy day hanging around the house with Jin, catching up here on the blog and drinking litres of tea with honey & lemon, hoping to break this cough up.

Wearing the furry, sweet, skanky goodness of Bal a Versailles EdT & parfum. I smell so freaking gorgeous.

We went to Outback Steakhouse tonight for Blooming Onions and STEAK! It was bloody delicious. I’m so full that my tummy physically hurts. OwOwOOOOWWWWWWW but happy.

Tonight at 8.45pm the luggage arrives from the airport. Couriered to my home. Thank you China Southern Airways and Sydney Airport Baggage Department.

Saturday 23:

Good morning Saturday. I’m so excited. The dogs are coming home today! YAY! I love having Paris around to cuddle and walk. The house feels a little empty without them both.

The Pharrell Williams Girl bottle jumped out at me today screaming WEAR ME! I did. Longevity is only very short but it’s fun to respritz. Amusingly Jin asked me if I was wearing Joop!

YAY! They are back and cuddles were in order.

It’s 35C today! WOW! Bloody hot out there.

This afternoon Kath & I went for our first swim of the season. It was pretty cold but after a few seconds my body attuned and I was in for a short while, did a couple of laps and got out. As I was drying myself off we realised that my Tigers Eye bracelet had broken so in I went again and hunted beads, very hard when you’re as blind as I am.

Home to change and thought I’ll just lie down for a minute with Paris. OOOPSIE! Woke up hours later. Missed out on seeing Phil and it was already time for dinner. Jin and I had Chinese at a BarBQ place he’s wanted to eat at for ages. The place smells dirty and the food is presented in varying shades of brown, no colour or excitement. I will say that it tasted delicious, seriously great. He will have to go there alone next time or do take away.

I’ve got this weird phlegmy cough. Jin has made a Tupperware container of his fave Korean remedy. Sliced Lemon, Lime, Dates and Ginger. Steep in water with or without tea, add honey to taste.

Before bed I drank two jugs of the remedy, a bunch of water and spritzed Neela Vermeire Creations Rahele. Who doesn’t feel better when smelling of fruity osmanthus leather? Goodnight all.

Sunday 24:

GAWD! I’m so sick. Nose running uncontrollably. Coughing like a 70 year old chain smoker. Sweating.

BLEAUGH!!!

Tried to get a fill in for work tonight. The girls are busy. Going in feeling like shit.

Had a super hot bubble bath in LUSH Rose Jam, used Amouage Dia lotion and Parfum.

 

OK, enough about me. How was your week? Anything fun, fragrant, food or friend related happen?
Share, we love it.
Portia xx

 

Scent Diary: 4.9 – 10.9.2017

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Portia

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WHIRLWIND WEEK APJ,

Getting ready, getting out, getting here. It’s been so bloody hectic and 100% fun. Yes, there have been some surprises, not all of them ultimately happy ones, but that’s what holiday adventures are all about. This is hope I would love to live, travelling the world in search of experience. Meeting new people and having a momentary connection, or making new friends. Heaven.

Scent Diary: 4.9 – 10.9.2017

Monday 4:

Getting ready for going away

In the evening Alice, TinaG and Phil dropped around and it was great to see them even though I was preoccupied.

A Press Sample of Parfumerie Generale Suede Osmanthe 5.1 arrived in the mail. It is unutterably beautiful. Sweet, green, fruity, plush suede and very sexy. Imagine if Daim Blond was amped towards canned fruit in sugar syrup and greened out.

Fragrantica

Tuesday 5:

Running around and getting the final things done. Scott came over and helped, Jin was of work so we ran around together. It was fun. I love these guys.

Jacomo Silences PdT was my daytime accompaniment. Excellent mossy chypre. It was about AUD$11/30ml spray from FragranceNet and smells divine.

Worked, back in drag tonight after 2 weeks out with my ankle. All seems good now.

Neela Vermeire Creations Trayee was my choice for work tonight and I smelled utterly fabulous. There were moments when I drifted off into frag head land. BLISS!

Packed the bags tonight. Cleaned the fish tank. Emptied all the bins for bin night. Cleaned up our dining table and put all my fragrances into my perfume room. Folded the washing and put it away.

Just before bed I spritzed some vintage CHANEL No 5 EdP. Sleepy time.

Wednesday 6:

Took the dogs out to the kennels because Jin will be working weird hours and the boys really like their regimented life. They also love going back out to the trainers to brag about their forever home adventures. I wore vintage Caron Infini that comes in a pressurised spritz. The initial aldehydes have become shrill, oily and metallic but one minute in and HEAVEN! My mate margo reckons it’s early 1970s PdC from a gift set. Very cool.

Home for some lunch. The last of the Chinese reheats.

Here are my hairy Hobbit feet and lavish red nail polish. I’m ready for India now.

Keihl’s Original Musk lotion, Olympic Orchids Amber/Labdanum Bath Oil, Cuir Pleine Fleur James Heeley was my bathing ritual for the flight. Fragrant but hopefully not IN YOUR FACE.

Got my gear together and Jin took me to the airport. Happy to be going, sad to be leaving stuff. You get it, I know.

The American Express Lounge is not so much fun solo. I nearly drank them out of sparkling and still water. Hydration pre flight.

Historic entertainment units on China Southern. Actually it was nice not being bombarded with movies from less than a metre away and I got some solid reading done too. Finished Handmaid’s Tale and started on some new thing that was recommended but I’m not sure whether I even understand it yet.

The staff were so good, no problems, full of smiles. I enjoyed the flights immensely.

Thursday 7:

ARRIVED Delhi Airport.

We stayed in Gurgoan and had dinner there.

Showered quickly at night and doused myself in vintage Miss Dior parfum.

Friday 8:

Hotel breakfast, more vintage Miss Dior parfum then off for a flight to Assam. Arrived safely, though the kangaroo style landing left me in doubt of our ultimate survival for a few moments. Careening around like a drunken sailor with St Vitus Dance.

We ordered an Uber who drove us the four hours into the mountains of Meghalaya state, to the capital Shillong. We only stopped once but the scenery on the journey was absolutely breathtaking. The middle shot is a boarding school, the most spectacular grounds and scenery.

For some reason Varun was expecting a tiny town perched atop a mountain, much like McLeod Gang was back in 2001 when we visited. Sadly it is a HUGE city. Well, sadly for Varun, I’m very happy here. The hustle and bustle leaves NYC for dead.

At night we wandered the markets and had Mo-Mos. A selection of steamed chicken and fried pork.

Saturday 9:

We woke at around 5am and set out on an adventure walk around 5.30am. Varun had found a nearby lake park with a walking track around the gardens. Lodki Park was designed and built by the British while they were here and it seriously looks like time has stood still since then. We wandered around it for about an hour then came back to the hotel for breakfast.

Spectacular hedges of dahlia glowed in the cool morning mist, they lit up the walk and reminded me how precious the gift of adventure is. I’ve never seen such a display and these hedges dotted the walk all around the lake and through the parklands.

Breakfast! Yeah, I know it doesn’t look like much. That’s because it’s my third helping of dal, vegetables, yoghurt and paratha. Happy place reached.

Todays excursion was to the wettest places on earth, Mawsynram and Cherrapunji. What better time to see them than in monsoon. The heavens did not disappoint. We drove through clouds more than half the day with sporadic clearings. When it rained it bucketed down and the rest of the time it drizzled and spritzed. Not terribly cold until you got into the winds.

We hiked to some spectacular waterfalls, three sets in all but we only got real photographable vision of one set.

We had Masala Chai to celebrate. Hint for India travel: buy a large bottle of mineral water and get them to make your tea with this. Saves dirt in your coffee. This place was every sort of gorgeous and the kids who run it super sweet.

We also went into a cave complex. It wasn’t terribly long, about 150m, but there were some very low and tight squeezes. We also ended up knee deep in water a couple of times and the rest was climbing over rocks. All done in bare feet. Sadly it wasn’t really photographable but it was an amazing experience.

Varun had chicken Mo-Mos and chilli jam at a roadside stall. I was feeling a bit queazy from driving the winding mountain ranges so I just drank water.

We stopped at a town and looked around a bit. Some dog started barking at me. That never happens, they always love me. I was extremely downhearted by it.

As we drove home the clouds closed in around us. Visibility was about 10m at the most. It was beautiful and eerie, like floating. Amazing trip.

We wandered around to the City Family Dhaba, Shillong’s #1 recommended restaurant. Everybody we spoke to told us it was a must visit. It didn’t disappoint either.

We were so full at the end we couldn’t even finish the garlic Naan. Sacrilege!!

Varun: What do you want to listen to
Portia (being a smart arse) Karen Carpenter of the Carpenters
Music comes on: It’s Gonna Take Some Time by the Carpenters

Consider this smart arse put in his place. SNAP!

Then we hit the club on the roof of our hotel. Varun and I danced until my t-shirt was dripping wet. We sat for a while and then I needed a shower and then bed. Bloody hell. I’m DEAD!!

Sunday 10:

Couldn’t sleep last night. The dogs of Shillong must be having gang territory wars. It sounded vicious and intense and continued for hours. From the sounds there were dogs being torn apart. Terrifying. Every time I thought it had stopped and drifted towards the lands of nod another round would begin.

So I am sleepless and a trifle sweaty this morning.

Best fixer for that? Jacomo Silences. Freaking perfect.

SORRY I’m a bit late posting this addendum! Out all day. Had a wonderful time seeing more waterfalls and lakes.

This is our Shillong driver Yuvraj, his name means prince destined to be king. He has perfect English and is excellent company, we have asked him to drive us tomorrow and day after too.

Varun took this shot. I think it a very flattering likeness.

We had lunch at the poshest place in the whole area. Took our lovely driver there with us and we all sat and chatted companionably while stuffing our faces. I made the hotel staff pull a table and chairs out of the restaurant onto the verandah so our view and the breeze would be wonderful. It was a huge drama but once we were settled it was absolutely amazing.

 

Hey! So what have you been doing? Tell us all in the comments below please. Anything, fun, fragrant, friends, family or food related. ANYTHING! Tell us about your week.

Portia xx

Rose + Don`t Get Me Wrong Baby by ELdO

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Portia

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Sorry APJ,

I was supposed to come home and finish a post but my mate Rose came to trivia tonight. Afterwards we came home and were eating the delicious biscuits made by my mate Nikki at the Post Office and left in my PO Box. We also had some Aftelier Rose & Ginger Oolong Tea. If you haven’t tried Mandy’s teas then you NEED TO, immediately.

Anyway we basically chattered away three hours and I was an excellent catch up.

We also sniffed some fragrance. Rose fell in love with Don`t Get Me Wrong Baby by ELdO. I have the new and old bottles so I gifted her the original.

Don’t Get Me Wrong Baby by Etat Libre d’Orange

Fragrantica

Fragrantica gives these featured accords:
Orange blossom, lily-of-the-valley, patchouli, jasmine, aldehydes, amber, cacao pod, marshmallow, musk

It smelled wonderful on her, what else could I do?

Then we wandered up to the station and now she’s gone.

So I really don’t have a post for you and I’m sorry for that. Sometimes you have to live a little and let everything else go hang.
Portia xx

Sandra’s London Trip June 2017 Photo Essay

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Sandra

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Hey there dear APJ! How is everyone doing? Hopefully comfortably settling in with summer or winter.

It has been a hectic couple of months here in Rotterdam. What with school keeping us busy, family & friends visiting, it was a blessing to be able to get away for my son’s birthday over a long weekend at the beginning of June. He turned 8 this year and one of his greatest wishes was to see London (Big Ben, Buckingham Palace, Tower of London, London Eye, and of course toy stores were all on his wish list). Not only did we manage to see all the sights, but we also had a couple of perfume activities which I would like to share with you today.

London Trip June 2017 Photo Essay

I finally got to meet Neela Vermeire of Neela Vermeire Creations! Wow! What an amazing woman – but I knew that already. It was absolutely fabulous sitting down with her in London and chatting for a while. Thankfully dear son and husband also enjoyed their visit. Thank you Neela!!!

Saturday was reserved for meeting up with Tara from A Bottled Rose. I last saw Tara in Vienna about two years ago and I was thrilled to be able to spend some time with her again. We started out by heading to the Natural History Museum. It was a bribe for my son so that we could go sniffing later! We headed off to Harrods afterwards and had lunch before heading to the toy kingdom which I must admit was exciting for us parents as well. The choice is staggering.

Now it was my turn – yay!! Tara took us upstairs to the beautiful area where many brands have their own small boutiques. I got to sniff perfumes from Xerjoff, Dior, Frederic Malle, Kilian, Ramon Monegal. The new Superstitious by Frederic Malle is gorgeous and powerful. Xerjoff is a brand that I like wearing and I was thrilled to see that the Casamoratti line is now offered in 30 ml bottles. I liked Monegal’s Flamenco quite a bit – the red bottle is eye catching and the perfume was a lot of fun starting off with a blast of raspberry and it stayed a happy joyful perfume.

This summer Dior will be shaking things up a bit. The SA was kind enough and said that I was permitted to write about it. I think that many of us will be super happy with the big news that they will be offering the Privée line in 40 ml bottles in addition to the current bottle line up. Dior will also be launching a new sub line to the Privée consisting of 10 new perfumes which are apparently easier to wear and more appealing to the mass market. I for one cannot wait to see what Dior comes up with and am so excited about the smaller bottles. My husband may have to hold onto my wallet!

When we meandered downstairs to the perfume hall I was taken aback at how bustling it was. One of the first perfumes I spritzed that day was Ormonde Jayne’s Ambre Royal. Truly a beautiful perfume with notes of osmanthus and iris and drying down to a wonderful unsweet amber. What a shame that I did not pick it up.

We then headed towards the Kilian stand where two handsome SAs Niko and Johan greeted us and walked me through the new releases. These two gentlemen were so patient and kind and both had a great sense of humor – here is a picture of us. I just love the box for Black Phantom and decided then and there to buy the perfume. Not necessarily smart to buy a perfume for the packaging – but had to do it this one time. The one perfume that I just adored was Single Malt. I walked around the city with my arm at my nose and had to go back in the evening to buy that one too. Reviews coming up of the two Kilians.

After all of that our noses were exhausted and we decided to head to Big Ben. We took some pictures with Tara and our full on day came to a close. A big shout out to dear Tara for taking time to spend with us. We loved seeing her.

I know that I could have seen and sniffed more, but we jammed as much as possible into the 4 day weekend. It just means that we will have to go back and SOON!

What about ya’ll? Any travels lately? Any fun sniffing lately? I would love to hear about it.

Sending you lots of sunny hugs,
Sandra xoxo

Guilty Pleasures – a Sydney sniffy meet up!

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TinaG

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Hi APJ!

Perfume people are the best! It’s great to be able to chat online & catch up in real life to swap fragrance stories and smell different things. Group catch ups are fun afternoons, and we tend to go a bit crazy….there’s always some awesome frags on the table.

Simon and Kerri from FaceBook Aussie Fragrance Network lead the charge organising a sniffy on Sunday 11 June, with a general theme of ‘Guilty Pleasures’. Heh. I think that’s an umbrella statement that we all fall under at some point in time. We met at Hotel Sweeny in Sydney, a pub which has missed the renovation revolution having street-rescued sofas and worn sticky carpet, but with some interesting beers on tap – I did try Illawarra Brewing Company: Smashing Rumpkin which had a funky pumpkin note. Odd but tasty.

Guilty Pleasures – a Sydney sniffy meet up!

We met at the rooftop bar & spread out our stashes. We did a LOT of sniffing!! I asked Scott to bring along a range of Rive Gauche by YSL for me to run through, as I’d heard so much but never really sniffed, and I knew Scott was a fan. He brought along (L to R in the photo) vintage EDP, vintage EDT, current EDT 2006 and vintage parfum 1980s. Fab.

Some of the “Guilty Pleasures” people brought along were:

Amouage Gold Man: you spray this and it takes over the room.
Cool Water by Davidoff: the vintage stuff is still incredible. Done to death by uncles, dads and other male relatives but still fantastic.
Giorgio Beverly Hills: an overpowering 80s tuberose bomb that lays claim to 5 metres around itself at all times.
Pure Honey by Kim Kardashian: Undeniably pleasant though, and very affordable.
Dark Ride by Xyrena: a super weirdy that polarises people through its green, medicinal, water-park dankness.
Baraonda by Nasomatto: when you know you shouldn’t spend a silly amount of money on a tiny bottle, but you do it anyway because it smells like the best dark chocolate and roasted nuts and boozey goodness.
Scent by Theo Fennell: a spectacularly lush floral with a skanky underside, like a beautiful, rich, classy lady wrapped in furs who just doesn’t shower often enough.
Glamazon by RuPaul and Diva by Ungaro I suppose because I expected them to be awful – the price point and the tacky bottles – but they are both amazing and rich and tenacious – thus they became guilty pleasures
Gaiac 10, Sacred Wood, MDCI sets – all generous gifts from online friends that he had never actually met.
Pino Silvestre: this is an old favourite of many people, and cheap as chips.

What’s my guilty pleasure when it comes to perfume? Oh, so many…. But I think my top hit would be that I seem to be starting a collection of vintage Guerlain – Vol de Nuit, Mitsouko, and Apres L’Ondee. Oops. I love them though.

What’s your fragrant guilty pleasure?

Till next time
Tina G xx