Beach Hut Man by Elise Benat for Amouage 2017

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Portia

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Hi there Niche Nerds,

When I heard the name Beach Hut Man I laughed out loud. Not because it’s funny but because I was so surprised. The new direction that Amouage is going in is interesting. No one can say that Christopher Chong is afraid of change, experimentation or surprise. Having built up a stable of hefty, Arabic inspired, gloriously fabulous perfumes in the Amouage house he then moved to produce the Library series. They took me a while to get but others were much faster learners. Now he is bringing The Midnight Flower Collection which started with Bracken.

Beach Hut Man by Amouage 2017

Beach Hut Man by Elise Benat

Fragrantica

Fragrantica gives these featured accords:
Top: Mint, orange blossom, galbanum
Heart: Vetiver, moss, ivy
Base: Myrrh, patchouli, woody note

interesting, like a chic mint patty being eaten while sitting on the damp grass under a tree near the compost heap. There’s also a note I’m smelling quite a lot in modern niche that is woody, warm and slightly electric. It’s a funny note because it jumps over everything else for me, thank goodness I really like it. Something warm and cosy about sit yet largely space age. Maybe it’s the idea of the smell of burning sand and baking driftwood?

Beach Hut Man Amouage wreck_wood_metal_rusted_weathered_decay_beach PXHerePDI

I really like how Beach Hut Man smells. It has this electro mint thing, a green, dank, earthy space smell and this weird woody/salty/glassy smell. Interesting.

One thing it doesn’t smell is finished. There felt like no synchronicity was ever reached, no full melding and blending of the parts. It’s like they are warring factions, unresolved and unhappy to be in the same perfume. I’m no perfumer, or even a real connoisseur, but Beach Hut Man smells slightly lazy and/or amateur to me. (Ducks) It smells like a newly minted indie frag, a boundary pusher, a slap. It in no way smells like a super smooth finished product from a mass-tige brand sold in department stores. Maybe that’s why I like it so much. It’s raw, a bit rough, weird and eminently wearable.

Beach Hut Man Amouage beach pivabayPDI

Will I wear my decant? Yes, I’m so bloody intrigued that I’m taking it with me on holidays. By the time you read this I’ll probably have bought a bottle.

Further reading: Persolaise and Brooklyn Fragrance Lover
Libertine has $435/100ml FREE Australian Delivery
Surrender To Chance has samples from $4.59/0.5ml

Are you interested in trying this one?
Portia xx

First In Fragrance: Visiting Aus Liebe Zum Duft, Bruchsal, Germany

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Val the Cookie Queen

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Hey all you APJ Friends!

As you may or may not have gathered from my last post, I took off to Bruchsal, Germany with my husband (Chris) last week. I have wanted to visit ALZD/First in Fragrance (FiF) for years. So Chris and I made a deal. We would drive up there for three days, delivering my cookies in Salzburg on the way. One day perfume, one day downhill biking and hiking, one day Munich.

First In Fragrance

Visiting Aus Liebe Zum Duft, Bruchsal, Germany

ALZD/FiF was founded by Georg R Wuchsa in the year 2000. Hop over to the website First In Fragrance and you can read the history behind it all. I would be willing to bet that many of us have ordered, and still order fragrance samples from here. There is no better way to be able to try all of the hundreds of perfumes.


Filling Samples – How Does It Work?

There are four lovely ladies filling samples non-stop. All the samples are decanted from the original bottles. The sample is exactly what comes in the bottle. (I dunno if I am the only one to have noticed that sometimes carded samples do not smell the same as the perfume in the bottles.)

Of course many of the perfume houses are so small that they don´t do official samples anyway. There are around 2000, yep, two thousand, bottles to chose from. As the ladies look at the orders, they grab the bottles from the shelves and put them on a tray. Then back to the desk to fill the requested samples.
After completing several orders at once they return the bottles to their places, or at least that is the idea!! The orders are then beautifully packaged along with maybe some sweets, or little toys, perfumed feathers, and other little goodies. Making it a joy for anyone to receive, whether a small order or a big one. The girls fill at least 3000 samples a week.

ALZD/FiF now has a a beautiful range of cosmetics, and the Frederic Malle and Serge Lutens lines have recently been introduced. ALZD is now the online partner of the Austrian company www.naegelestrubell.at .

What did I buy? Travel sizes of Malle´s Iris Powder for me (I wish I had bought a big bottle, it´s divine), Dries Van Noten for the Blondeswunder, Monsieur for my personal trainer (He´s moving on from his 6 euro cologne ….!) and a BIG bottle of Portrait of a Lady for me. Finally. Chris came home with a bottle of Nasomatto´s Black Afgano. After getting over the initial disappointment of not being able to smoke it, he was quite happy. He never wears scent, but a few drops of this suits him really well. I have forbidden him to use more than half a spray at any one time. Two beautiful Diptyque candles joined the bag of goodies too.

It was an absolutely fabulous day. They have two canine noses, but only one was in the house. Beate Humbert, Georg´s right hand woman, has been with the company since day one. She took us through everything, from the offices, to the workplace and into the warehouse. Brilliant. Her son works there too, and it was their dog, Gatsby that was there. Chris split with him and took him for a walk, or perhaps the dog took him!

A million thanks to the whole ALZD crew it was such a brilliant day.

Following are pics, in no particular order. Chris took his camera and snapped lots of stuff. Had it been left to me you´d have had nothing. I suck at pics when I have to take them. Ask Portia.

Hallowe’en Bussis
CQ

Botticelli by Teone Reinthal for Teone Reinthal Natural Perfume 2015

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Kate Apted

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Hi APJ family!

One year, my poor mother gave up on her garden and in frustration, she threw all her seeds all over the remains of her failed attempt. She left nature to do its thing, unimpeded. She happens to like manicured English cottage gardens, where each plant is put in a spot for a purpose. She takes delight in tending to them and nurturing them with supports and regular feeding of nutrients. I, on the other hand, have an incredible attachment to wild cottage gardens that are overgrown and have eclectic flora. I relish with absolute delight in the surprise of finding new things and exploring the life within the seeming chaos. The scents are unpredictable and haphazard.

The garden worked. By next spring, nature had created a veritable oasis of flourishing peace. My mother was a little jealous that she had never quite executed a garden with the expertise nature had shown. The colours were exquisite, everything was healthy and there was space for so much to grow in complete harmony. The insect life that year was rich and abundant.

WikiMedia

I found a natural perfume a few months ago that replicates such a garden. It is called Botticelli and is made by a talented and highly creative woman named Teone Reinthal.

Botticelli by Teone Reinthal Natural Perfume 2015

Botticelli by Teone Reinthal

Fragrantica

Fragrantica gives these featured accords:
Top: Bergamot, lemon, petitgrain
Heart: Jasmine sambac, damask rose, juniper berries
Base: Patchouli, ambrette (musk mallow), oakmoss, labdanum, vetiver

It opens with a creamy warmth that comes from a musk and oakmoss heat, while radiating a citrus heart that stays around for hours. Much like a breeze brings gentle scents in waves from a rich garden, Botticelli does the same. It weaves around with facets of citrus and rose and jasmine, with a lightness of a butterfly. Just when I think I’ve understood Botticelli, there is a shift and the musk reigns for a moment. While each of the notes are lovely, it is the waft of the whole composition that makes Botticelli incredible.

WikiMedia

I have a set of rules I use with this scent. I cannot wear this outside my home. I must apply it with a cotton ball that then gets stuffed inside my bra. I cannot wear it in the morning. I do not reapply it. It is almost as if Botticelli has its own nature that I cannot control and master. I cannot possibly know better! I suspect I get a little ‘away with the fairies’ whilst wearing Botticelli, so I think my rules are to protect me from dwelling in my inner universe when it isn’t appropriate. It meshes with my inner world in a way no other scent does, so when I need to be completely self composed I avoid Botticelli.
There is a wild woman, tribal elder quality to Botticelli that makes it sensuous, feminine and celebrates fertility in all its forms. At the same time, it has a barely constrained politeness to it that will not offend those in your presence. Mildly zesty and tart, yet mellow and creamy.

Teone Reinthal has Botticelli from $10/2ml Sample

Do you have scents that transport you to a place of personal happiness, where no one else can reach you? Or do you have quirky rules regarding a particular fragrance?

Until next time… Kate xx

Gekkou Hanami VdP by Dawn Spencer Hurwitz for DSH Perfumes 2017

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TinaG

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Hi APJ!

Cherry blossoms are a common sight in Sydney during spring. They are planted along nature strips and road verges, for reasons I don’t know. There is also a Cherry Blossom Festival at Auburn Botanical Gardens which is hugely popular and a great ‘selfie’ opportunity for both old and young. I don’t know how this compares to the famous Cherry Blossom viewings in Japan, but I found Auburn very relaxing and fun.

My enjoyment of blossom season was enhanced by re-discovering their smell. Many spring florals, like cherry, intensify at night. You can stand under a cherry tree and find yourself surrounded by scent as it ‘falls’ down from the branches. I enjoyed the season so much that I started drafting an article on cherry and cherry blossom fragrances.

Flickr

But then: I was side-tracked from writing by a visit to Portia for tea one day – he’d just received a bunch of adorable little roller ball samples from DSH Perfumes. He picked one out for me to try, and guess what? It was a cherry blossom fragrance!! The one he chose was Gekkou Hanami. Don’t you love a bit of synchronicity??

Gekkou Hanami VdP by DSH Perfumes 2017

Gekkou Hanami VdP by Dawn Spencer Hurwitz

Gekkou Hanami (Sakura gazing in the Moonlight)

DSH Perfumes

DSH Perfumes give these featured accords:
Acacia Honey Absolute, Green Rose Leaves, Osmanthus, Rice absolute, Sake (accord), Sakura Blossom (accord), Ambrette Seed, Frankincense co2 Absolute, Hinoki, Virginia Cedar, Bulgarian Rose Otto, Osmanthus Absolute, Rosewater, Waterlily, Tunisian Neroli, Yuzu

Gekkou Hanami opens clean and slightly metallic with a burst of green cut flower stems supporting a delicate floral note. The cut flower effect slowly fades over 10 minutes to reveal the subdued lemony-style citrus of yuzu. Over time a combination of woody notes comes through, I get a cedar but there’s something in there which has a subtle dry grey smokiness.

Reapplying the fragrance a few times over the course of a day strengthens the notes in different ways – sometimes I get more florals, other times it takes on a sheer shimmering quality. I’m fascinated by the combined strength & gentleness of this fragrance. It is a breath of spring air that brings you to your senses, uplifting and grounding at the same time. I really enjoy it and wish that it had been in my life during the season just past. I’d love to try this as a spray and see how it opens up the fragrance. As it is, the little roller ball has lasted me ages – I’ve worn and re-worn this over a two week period and only used half of the sample.

https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:A_Spring_Breeze_of_Yun_Shouping.jpgWikiMedia

Further reading: The Fragrant Journey and Redolent Mermaid
DSH Perfumes have Gekkou Hanami from $6 sample vials

Thank you Portia for the chance to try this beautiful gem!

Do you own or have you tried any DSH Perfumes?

Till next time,
Tina G

Suede Osmanthe 5.1 by Pierre Guillaume for Parfumerie Generale 2017

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Portia

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Hello Niche Nerds,

A few weeks ago a Press Sample of Parfumerie Generale Suede Osmanthe 5.1 arrived in the mail. It was two days before I left for India so naturally it got put aside in the flurry of organising. I grabbed it again and took it to meet Rasei Forte and Kerri Clarke recently for lunch so I could also gauge their reactions. Sometimes I worry that my own adoration of Pierre Guillaume colours the way I smell his fragrances. They all seem so flawlessly created, smooth where they should be, shocking or inventive, weird and wonderful. Yet, he manages to make even his most challenging scents wearable, comfortable to wear even. That’s quite a trick.

Pierre Guillaume is a fragrance free-radical. Running his empire of four brands from two large compounds, not owned or funded by the big boys and almost everything is put together there as it comes to us. He tries to keep as much of the production French, including bottles and packing. The more I know about him the more impressed I am by his acumen.

Suede Osmanthe 5.1 by Parfumerie Generale 2017

Suede Osmanthe 5.1 by Pierre Guillaume

Fragrantica

Fragrantica gives these featured accords:
Aldehydes, black tea, osmanthus, apricot, suede, cashmeran, musk

Imagine apricot jam (verging on a marmalade, there’s a tartness to the sweet), black tea and a brand new expensive leather bag. If you can remember these three scents olfactorally, then you understand the premise behind the opening of Suede Osmanthe 5.1. For once I am not talking about a sideways perfume style hint towards the fruity jam, here I can smell it like it’s warming on my toast. Enjoy this beautiful opening for less than 10 minutes.

Suede Osmanthe 5.1 is beautiful. Sweet, green, fruity, plush suede and very sexy. Imagine if Daim Blond was amped towards canned fruit in sugar syrup and greened out.

I kind of have an idea what osmanthus smells like, Jin is far more able to pick it than I. To me it is like a creamy green floral but Jin says I have not really captured the interest or essence of osmanthus in my short description. So, obviously, Your Mileage May Vary.

Parfumerie Generale has from €68/30ml
LuckyScent has $125/50ml and Samples

Which is your favourite Pierre Guillaume scent?
Portia xx

 

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.

Comments and Fleur de Lalita by Parfums Dustita 2017

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Val the Cookie Queen

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Good day to you APJ readers, stalkers and commenters.

Can you be bothered?

The most exciting thing about my first ever blog post was the comments. I could hardly stop myself looking every two minutes to
see if anything had been added. I still get a thrill to see my thoughts in print, but don´t check quite so often to see if anyone said anything. I do enjoy the interplay with the readers.

Comments and Fleur de Lalita by Parfums Dustita 2017

Two experiences in my commenting of late have triggered this post. Last week I was commenting on a blog based in the US. It was one of those ones that are a bit of a pain in the arse, you know? First your name, an email address, checking the “I am not a robot” box, identifying which of the six random pics has zebra crossings in them to prove you are not a bloody robot and then, just when you got it all worked out, your comment disappears. Swear. Forget it. And then recently commenting on Portia´s La Fille de Berlin post, and making several typos. Guaranteed that a comment with typos will post just fine. So annoying, because then I have to post again excusing the typos.

Is it worth the bother?

Well is it? Why do you comment on blogs? Why don´t you comment on blogs? I find it so terribly fascinating that there are amazing blogs out there, (I´m talking perfume for today), and no one says a damn thing. I seriously wonder why. Perhaps some writing doesn’t motivate comments? I am sure the blogger can see how many people have tuned in to read though. That is something I am not privy to as I am a contributor and Portia is the blog host.

The Slow Decline of the Comment.

I have noticed with the blogs that I follow, and it is too many, that comments are getting to be less and less. I decided to have a chat with A Bottled Rose, The Candy Perfume Boy, and Bonkers about Perfume and see what they said. The one thing they all said in common, but in separate private chats with me, is that there is a marked decline in commenting. Hmmmmm.

“I ask a question, but no one ever answers. Rarely anyways. “
“I am not blogging for public feedback, but because I have things I want say, including off-topic things.”
“I wonder if people might think some bloggers have their heads stuck up their backsides ….” Read but don´t comment.
“I do love the regular commenters and the rapport I have with them, they count for a lot.”
“It is more of a fragmented scene now.”
“Some blogs don´t encourage comments anyway.”
“Some just read for information, not for interaction.”
“I think people are changing the way they engage. On social media it´s easy just to like something, or heart it, or drop a little emoji to say ‘I like this’. Most of the blogs have a like button too.”
“I have definitely noticed that people do not comment as much as they used to.”
“They do comment of FB, Twitter and Instagram though.”

Why bother?

A lot of work goes into a blog post. Perfume, books, fashion, food. Doesn’t matter. Fact checking, background research, spellchecks, punctuation, deleting random apostrophes. Blogs don´t happen on their own. They are ball busters to keep going. And the vast majority do it out of a deep love for the subject matter. I have made so many real life friends through perfume, and it would never have happened had they not taken the time to stick a comment on the end of post. Comments are our likes. But you know what? If nothing else, please keep reading, without you dear readers, there are no blogs.

What am I wearing today? Parfums Dustita`s Fleur de Lalita. Thanks for asking.

Fragrantica

Fragrantica gives these featured accords:
Top: May rose, magnolia, jasmine, white lily, galbanum, ylang-ylang
Heart: Ambrette (musk mallow), exotic floral notes
Base: Madagascar vanilla, sandalwood, tonka bean, ambergris

When do you comment?

Bussis
CQ